Once or twice a year a packet of new releases arrives on my doorstep from Sylvan Dell publishers and we always enjoy that moment. If you are unfamiliar with this particular publishing company, they specialize and focus on books that integrate science, math and geography. How do they do this? Primarily through animals, which most children are drawn to. Their titles are a mix of fiction and non-fiction but each has scientific fact woven in or mathematical problems for the young readers to solve. It is a very unique publishing company, and one worth looking into.
As mentioned, a list of their new releases arrived and I’m here to share them with you today. (You’re welcome.)
Animal Helpers: Sanctuaries contains full-color photographs. This book, of all the new releases, contains the most text, explaining how animals are found and placed into sanctuaries. It also shares of how the animals are cared for, trained and loved. The book takes a look at six different sanctuaries around the country and gives the reader plenty of information to mull over as they consider how they might wish to help provide for or maintain these sanctuaries – or work in one for themselves!
The Deductive Detective, by Brian Rock was my oldest son’s favorite. There are 12 animals participating in a cake contest when the cake is discovered missing! Duck is called in to solve the case of the missing cake and as he eliminates the possibilities, the young reader practices a little subtraction. This is one of the more clever of Sylvan Dell titles that we have enjoyed that involves math. A big thumbs up from all of us on this title! It’s a winner for sure.
As you have likely ascertained at this point, Sylvan Dell titles rather give away the main idea of the book. On the Move: Mass Migrations, by Scotti Cohn is no exception! Each page spread features a different animal and their migration habits. We learned about horseshoe crabs, sandhill cranes, caribou and salmon, among others. As is typical of Sylvan Dell titles, the back of each book contains additional facts and information and, occasionally, some ideas for crafts and experiments. In the case of this book, the back contains more information on why animals migrate. If you are currently studying this topic, here’s a title you won’t want to miss!
Balloon Trees, by Danna Smith was my personal favorite. Mommy probably appreciated this book more than the kids because I knew absolutely nothing whatsoever about rubber trees. The kids loved the pictures of the balloons (naturally!) and I enjoyed learning how balloons are made. An informative, interesting read to be sure!
Lastly, for purposes of this post, is Shark Baby, by Ann Downer. This book follows the adventures of a baby shark who doesn’t know exactly what type of shark he is or where he belongs in the ocean. As he meets different sea creatures, he wonderes if he might be related to them. He can puff up, so does that make him a puffer fish, etc? In the end we learn that baby shark is a Swell Shark. As our family hadn’t heard of this variety, this was a fun adventure.
As I mentioned, Sylvan Dell has created a unique line of books. They also provides tips and ideas for how teachers, parents and home schooling families can use these books to their advantage as they expand their children’s knowledge of the world around them. Do check out their website for more information.
Many thanks to Sylvan Dell who sent the above titles my direction in exchange for my honest thoughts.
Carrie does blog about books other than childrens’ over at Reading to Know. However, given the fact that three of the readers in her home are under the age of 7, she features a lot of titles that are appealing to our younger reading friends.