Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A PLACE FOR FROGS


By Melissa Stewart
Publisher: Peachtree
ISBN 13: 978-1-56145-521-8

FROM THE FLAP: Frogs make our world a better place. But sometimes people do things that make it hard for them to live and grow.

In simple yet informative language, award-winning children’s science writer Melissa Stewart introduces readers to some of the ways human action or inaction can affect frog populations. More than just a book about frogs, A PLACE FOR FROGS will open readers’ minds to a wide range of environmental issues.

Describing various examples—from the northern leopard frog in Minnesota ponds to the harlequin frog in rainforests of Central America—the text provides an intriguing look at frogs, at the ecosystems that support their survival, and at the efforts of some people to save them.

At the end of the book, the author offers readers a list of things they can do in their own communities to help protect these special creatures.

Artist Higgins Bond ‘s glorious full-color illustrations vividly and accurately depict the frogs and their surroundings.

KATE’S TAKE: Young artists will hop for joy when they read Melissa Stewart’s A Place For Frogs.

FROG ART, ESSAY, AND POETRY CONTESTS ( Visual/Spatial and Verbal/Linguistic)

If you go to the Save The Frogs website at http://savethefrogs.com , you’ll find rules and guidelines for the above contests. They have a category for elementary students and offer cash prizes to the winners.

FROG LIFE CYCLES (Naturalist and Visual/Spatial)

Have students draw a version of the frog life cycle illustrated on the first few pages of the book. Ask them to fold their paper in half twice to create four equal rectangles. In one space draw eggs, the next a tadpole, then a froglet, and last a frog. Don’t forget to add the circular arrow. Teachers in the intermediate grades may choose to add the tadpole with legs stage to the life cycles.

LEAP FROG RELAY RACES (Kinesthetic and Interpersonal)

Divide your class into groups of four kids and see which team can leap frog to the finish line first. This could be a fun school-wide Field Day activity.

MATH FROG FACTS (Logical/Mathematical and Kinesthetic)

Cut out lily pads and write a different number on each one. Give students frog bean bags and call out a math fact. Ask students to throw their frog on the correct answer. Students can work in groups of three. One person can call out facts while the other two compete to be the first frog on the correct answer. Then, players can switch roles. You can get a set of six different colored frog bean bags for $15.95 at http://www.cptoys.com or a set of six identical green frogs for under $5 at http://www.parties4kids.com .

SAVE THE FROGS DAY EVENT (Naturalist and Interpersonal)

The last Friday in April Save The Frogs Day is celebrated worldwide. As a class plan a school or community-wide event to help spread awareness about the declining frog population and the effect on our environment. Don’t forget to record your event at http://savethefrogs.wufoo.com/forms/save-the-frogs-day-registration-form/ .

BOOK BUDDIES:

-A Place for Birds by Melissa Stewart
-A Place for Butterflies by Melissa Stewart
-All About Frogs by Jim Arnosky
-Frogs by Nic Bishop
-Frog Rescue by Garry Hamilton

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