Catchpole, Dr. Clive. Brian McIntyre. The Living World Deserts. Puffin; Reissue edition (March 18, 1985)

Ages 4-8
ISBN: 0803700377

     A simple, fascinating text and strikingly realistic artwork answer questions such as, "Are there any cold deserts? and Why do cacti have sharp spines instead of leaves?

Cherry, Lynne. The Great Kapok Tree: A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest. Voyager Books; Reprint edition (March 13, 2000)

Ages 4-8
ISBN: 0152026142

     In this breathtakingly beautiful picture book, Cherry combines illustrations that reveal a naturalist's reverence for beauty with a mythlike story that explains the ecological importance of saving the rain forests. The text is not a didactic treatise, but a simply told story about a man who falls asleep while chopping down a kapok tree. The forest's inhabitants--snakes, butterflies, a jaguar, and finally a child--each whisper in his ear about the terrible consequences of living in "a world without trees" or beauty, about the interconnectedness of all living things. When the man awakens and sees all the extraordinary creatures around him, he leaves his ax and "walks out of the rain forest." A map showing the earth's endangered forests and the creatures that dwell within ends the book which, like the rain forests themselves, is "wondrous and rare."

Cone, Molly. The In - Between World of Wetlands. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books for Children. 1996.

ISBN: 0871564807.

     Describes the damp environment of wetlands, the useful purposes they serve, and the plants and animals that inhabit them. Includes beautiful photos.

Cone, Molly. Squishy, Misty, Damp & Muddy. The In-Between World of Wetlands. Sierra Club Books for Children. 1996. Sierra Club Books for Children; 1st ed edition (April 1996)

Ages 6-8
ISBN: 0871564807

     This photo-essay introduces the variety and value of wetlands. Uncaptioned full-color photographs provide clear views of the plants, animals, and the general look of wetlands, while the text comments on their variety and environmental value, the destruction they've suffered, as well as efforts to conserve them. The relatively broad focus makes it a good introductory book for young children, though they will need to look elsewhere for specific information on the many types of wetlands and their inhabitants. An attractive resource for primary-grade classrooms. Carolyn Phelan

Dorros, Arthur. Rain Forest Secrets. Scholastic (July 1999)

Ages 4-8
ISBN: 0439063949

     A serviceable and somewhat engaging look at the ecology of rain forests, describing the animals and plants found there and exploring reasons why these places must be protected. Unfortunately, the text is occasionally weak. The word "canopy" is used twice before it is defined; some words are italicized but never defined or are merely labeled on nearby illustrations; and there is no glossary. The watercolor illustrations are more cartoonlike than realistic, which suits the informal tone of the text. The book's one map uses two such similar shades of green that it nearly negates its purpose: to differentiate between the locations of tropical and temperate rain forests. In addition, only continents are labeled, so the statement "Temperate rain forests grow along the west coast of North America, from northern California to British Columbia, Canada, and Alaska" is valuable only to readers with a good grasp of geography. Also, the text is at times vague; for example, many children will not know what country or continent the following refers to: "The Amazon river, flowing through the biggest rain forest in the world, carries one-sixth of all the earth's water that flows into oceans." Included is a well-balanced list of organizations to contact for further information. Adequate as a starting place for discussion since there is little available on the subject, especially for this age group; complete the picture with books about specific animals and places, and an atlas. --Ellen Fader, Westport Public Library, CT. Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Forsyth, Adrian. Journey Through a Tropical Jungle. Silver Burdett Press. (January 1994)

Ages 4-8
ISBN: 0382243773

George, Jean Craighead. Gary Allen (Illustrator). One Day in the Tropical Rain Forest. HarperTrophy (September 30, 1995)

Ages 9-12
ISBN: 0064420167

     George has again taken a microscope to a typical day in a natural region. An Indian boy leads a scientist who is trying to locate a previously unknown butterfly that the scientist hopes will halt the destruction of this particular rain forest. At the same time, a horde of army ants moves across the forest floor; a sloth comes down from a tree for its weekly visit; and other animals go about their daily business. Such ordinary happenings make an exciting sequence of events that holds readers' attention as they also learn facts about the flora and fauna of the rain forest. There may not be enough material here for a report, but the book is an example of nonfiction writing at its best, for readers learn facts and get a sense of the rain forest in diary form rather than straight factual writing. The description of the relationship between the destruction of the rain forest and the greenhouse effect is easy to understand, and the index helps readers wanting specific facts. The drawings are clear, but do not expand the textual information. --Margaret C. Howell, West Springfield Elem . School, VA Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Gibbons, Gail. Marshes and Swamps. Holiday House; 1999.

Ages 4-8
ISBN: 0823415155.

     In this excellent introduction to the delicate world of ecosystems, Gibbons describes the symbiotic relationships between plants and animals with just the right amount of detail for young readers. The differences and similarities between marshes and swamps are discussed and the evolution of the wetlands is explained in simple terms. Watercolor paintings done in muted, natural tones teem with creatures, labeled and shown in their natural habitats. After decrying the destruction of these important wetlands that upsets the delicate balance of nature, Gibbons then describes methods currently being used to protect and preserve them. A map of swamps and marshes in North American and a fact sheet on wetlands are included. Good easy-to-read nonfiction. AKit Vaughan, J. B. Watkins Elementary School, Midlothian, VA Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Hines, Gary, Robert Casilla (Illustrator) Midnight Forests: A Story Of Gifford Pinchot And Our National Forests. Boyds Mills Press (April 2005)

Ages 8-12
ISBN: 1563971488

     When Pinchot entered Yale in 1885 with the intention of becoming a forester, few Americans had heard of the profession, and he had to pursue his practical training in Europe. After successfully demonstrating the benefits of tending forests by managing the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina, Pinchot spread his message throughout the country. As head of the newly formed Forest Service, he trained others to tend public lands. However, his most enduring legacy came in collaboration with President Theodore Roosevelt when the two men carried out a plan to set aside huge forest reserves in the West. Without the work of this conservationist, the U.S. landscape today probably would include far fewer trees today. The full-color illustrations adequately portray the events described in the text. With ongoing debates about forest conservation and logging issues, this clearly written picture-book biography provides a timely introduction to the work of an important pioneer. –Kathy Piehl, Minnesota State University, Mankato Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Hirschi, R., Erwin Bauer, Peggy Bauer. Save Our Wetlands. (Audubon One Earth Books) Bantam Dell Pub Group; 1994.

Ages 9-12
ASIN: 0385311974

Holmes, A., David Neuhaus.  I Can Save the Earth: A Kid's Handbook for Keeping Earth Healthy and Green. New York, NY : Julian Messner, c1993.

Ages 9-12
ISBN: 0-67174-545-X.

     A positive, participatory guide. Advising children not to sit back and cry about ecological conditions on Earth or to think that wishing will bring about change, Holmes offers myriad suggestions for result-bringing activities and tactics that are within the reach of most youngsters. Experiments and tests show the results of action or inaction. Statistics are plentiful, but are presented in a clear, simple manner. Pen-and-ink cartoon sketches with green washes (what else?) add information and appeal. A thorough bibliography of current children's books, a lengthy glossary, and a useful index complement this very worthwhile volume. --Eva Elisabeth Von Ancken, Trinity Pawling School, NY

Kalman, B, Amanda Bishop.  What are Wetlands? Crabtree Publishing Company; 2002.      

ISBN: 0865059705.

     Investigates some types of wetlands, including swamps, salt marshes, bogs, and flood plains; the many plants and animals that live in wetlands; and the threats to these ecosystems.

Lawlor, Elizabeth P. Pat Archer (Illustrator). Discover Nature in Water & Wetlands: Things to Know and Things to Do (Discover Nature Series). Stackpole Books (January 2000)

Young Adult
ISBN: 0811727319

     Wetlands provide perfect arenas for nature study. Discover Nature in Water and Wetlands explores the properties, processes, and phases of water and the plant and animal life associated with it, from trees, cattails, and ferns to dragonflies, salamanders, turtles, and beavers. With just a few essentials, such as a field notebook, hand lens, and bug box, readers will find both straightforward information and all kinds of activities to uncover the fascinating, diverse ecosystem that surrounds our ponds, swamps, and other watery places.

Liptak, K. 1991. Saving our Wetlands and Their Wildlife. Watts. Turtleback Books Distributed by Demco Media; 1992.

Ages 9-12
ASIN: 0606055789.

This utilitarian look at America's wetlands gives an overview of all the reasons these endangered habitats should be preserved. Detailed lists of birds, animals, and plants found in a variety of types of wet areas are provided. In addition, there is a brief glossary and many words are defined within the text itself. Liptak discusses the many reasons for the loss of these areas. Illustrated with full-color photographs and with easy-to-read print, this is an attractive if not exciting book. --Eva Elisabeth Von Ancken, Trinity Pawling School, NY Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Reed-Jones, Carol. Christopher Canyon (Illustrator). The Tree in the Ancient Forest. Dawn Publications (CA) (April 1995)

Ages 4-8
ISBN: 1883220327

     A 300-year-old fir tree is the main character in a forest drama depicting the cycle of interdependence between plants and animals. The truffles that grow on the roots of the fir tree are food for the mice, who, in turn, are food for the owls living in the hollow of the tree that was created by a woodpecker, and so on. Reed-Jones' cumulative verse technique, which very effectively illustrates the ecological concept, will make this book a lively story-time or lap-share read-aloud as well as a good choice for choral reading. Canyon's superb double-page illustrations can be appreciated both as fine works of art and as detailed studies of forest flora and fauna. Lauren Peterson

Sauvain, Philip. Rain Forests. Carolrhoda Books, Inc. Minneapolis.(March 1997)

Ages 9-12
ISBN: 1575050412

     Describes the world's rain forests, including the plants, animals, and people found there, with case studies of specific forests.

Slattery, B. E., Alan S. Kesselheim. WOW! The Wonders of Wetlands, an educator's guide. 1991. Environmental Concern, Inc., St. Michaels, MD.

Ages 5-18

     This is an acclaimed, comprehensive, interdisciplinary curriculum guide for educators of grade levels K-12. The latest edition, co-published by Environmental Concern and The Watercourse (Bozeman, MT), includes more than 50 fun and effective learning-activities for both indoor and outdoor use. These activities focus on the three definitive wetland parameters: water, soil, and plants; there are animal-oriented exercises as well. Equally important, the user is given extensive background information on wetlands and a glossary of terms, either within, or cross-referenced with, the activities. The 330 page guide also contains some basic ideas for wetland enhancement, restoration, and construction, and a listing of other educational wetland resources.

Staub, F.J. America's Wetlands: A Carolrhoda Earth Watch Book . Lerner Pub Group. 1995.

Ages 9-14

     The author turns his attention and camera to the topical subject of America's wetlands. He presents detailed descriptions of the types of fresh- and saltwater wetlands in the United States, along with an examination of the many species of plant and animal life that can be found in them. An essential part of the earth's biosphere, wetlands have received increased public attention in recent years. Staub concludes by discussing the crucial need for wetland creation and preservation.

Stille, Darlene R. Wetlands (True Books-Ecosystems) Children's Press (CT); 2000.

Ages 4-8


Stone, L.M. 1983. Marshes and Swamps. Children's Press. (New True Book) 1983.

Ages 5-9

     Describes the plants and animals that live in wetlands such as swamps, marshes, and bogs, and emphasizes the importance of wetlands to the earth's ecology.

Thornhill, Jan. A Tree in a Forest. Silver Burdett Press. N.J. 1993

Ages 4-8
ISBN: 0920775640

From Publishers Weekly
     "Every tree in every forest has its own special story." When readers finish this book, they will no longer look at the crusty old bark on the backyard maple without some wonder and curiosity. Beginning with one maple seed's fluttering fall and gentle landing on a rotting log, Thornhill ( The Wildlife ABC ; The Wildlife 1 2 3 ) narrates a 200-year saga rife with danger (many saplings are gobbled up by forest animals, fire explodes nearby in summer's dry heat) and transformation (a branch torn away in an ice storm leaves a hole that will house downy woodpeckers). Text and illustrations teem with life and change. Thornhill manages to capture enormous complexity with ease and serendipity (look for the porcupine sliding down an iced hill). Her strong, precise illustrations--calling to mind the artwork of Lynne Cherry--hint at another story in the background: the stream of changing cultures from Native Americans to pioneer settlers to farmers to industrial families to subdivision commuters. This compelling presentation of the interdependency and rhythmic round of life will surely nourish readers. Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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