Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015

The last time I made a wish list of nonfiction titles I was coveting, I was not able to buy books (long teacher strike). Now, I am making a list with my book purchasing power back in place. Always, I try to budget (not successfully). And always, I dream (very successfully)! We’ll see how many of these end up on my classroom shelves before summer.

Thanks to all of the bloggers I follow for highlighting these titles and keeping my nonfiction wish list ever growing. Here are ten titles I have my eye on!

And yes, there is a bit of a water and whale theme happening here.

Listed in order of publishing date.

Emmanuel’s Dream: The True Story of Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah written by Laurie Ann Thompson and illustrated by Sean Qualls (January 2015)

Emmanuel's Dream- The True Story of Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

Raindrops Roll by April Pulley Sayre (January 2015)

Raindrops Roll  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

Winnie: The True Story of the Bear Who Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh written by Sally M. Walker and illustrated by Jonathan D. Voss (January 2015)

Winnie- The True Story of the Bear Who Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

One Plastic Bag: Isatou Ceesay and the Recycling Women of the Gambia written by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Elizabeth Zunon (February 2015)

One Plastic Bag- Isatou Ceesay and the Recycling Women of the Gambia  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

A Nest Is Noisy by Dianna Hutts Aston and Sylvia Long (March 2015)

Nest is Noisy  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

Wandering Whale Sharks by Susumu Shingu (March 2015)

Wandering Whale Sharks  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

The Blue Whale by Jenni Desmond (April 2015) 

The Blue Whale  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

Trapped! A Whale’s Rescue written by Robert Burleigh and illustrated by Wendell Minor (April 2015)

Trapped! A Whale's Rescue  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

Water Is Water: A Book About the Water Cycle written by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Jason Chin (May 2015)

Water Is Water- A Book About the Water Cycle  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

Woodpecker Wham! written by April Pulley Sayre and illustrated by Steve Jenkins  (May 2015)

Woodpecker Wham!  Nonfiction Picture Book Dreaming: Spring 2015 There's a Book for That

Thanks to Alyson from Kid Lit Frenzy for the inspiration to read and share more nonfiction picture books in 2015. Follow the link to Alyson’s blog to read about more nonfiction books you need to read!

#nfpb2015

The Last Polar Bear

the last polar bear

Tigluk looks out his window and sees a polar bear in the distance. It is Nanuk. She looks straight at him and seems to speak to him “Follow me.” Tigluk and his grandmother paddle out in the ocean searching the ice floes for the bear. They discover, not Nanuk but her cub and Tigluk names him Pilluk (meaning to suvive). “With the melting of the ice, he is the last polar bear,” says Tigluk and cradles the bear in his arms.

This sad story by Jean Craighead George forces us to confront the serious issue of how climate change is affecting the polar bear habitat.

We used this powerful book to practice asking questions as we read and then looked at our questions critically – Did we find an answer in the text? By inferring, can we answer the question? Do we need to do more research? After discussing things, are we left with more questions?

Some of the questions we examined further:

How many bears are in the Arctic? Someone answered this quickly: “It was in the story: Just one left.” Then we talked further and realized we would have to do more research to find out the actual population. Questions were asked about whether polar bears are considered endangered?

If nobody found the polar bear, would he survive? Most people thought that we needed to do more research to answer questions like: How long do they nurse? What exactly do they need to survive? before we could infer because we don’t have enough background knowledge.

Why would the cub be all alone? To answer this question, we needed to use our own thinking and our background knowledge. Some students reminded us about what we had learned about polar bears in the book Winston of Churchill which was that polar bears could drown if the ice floes were too far apart. So we decided that maybe the mother had drowned while hunting for food because the ice was melting and she had too far to swim back to the ice floe where her cub was waiting.

Why did Nanuk choose a boy to look after her cub? For this question, we decided that we should infer. A suggestion was made that maybe Nanuk chose Tigluk because he was young and would have many years to care for the bear and maybe even help change things. Everyone thought that this made a lot of sense

Our questions and thoughts after discussing the book:

If there is only one bear, how will it mate? How will any more polar bears be born?

Is the world really getting too hot?

If the polar bear became used to humans and human food, could it ever go into the wild again?

How will the people in the village survive without polar bears? If other animals in the Arctic are also becoming endangered won’t this be hard on the people in the North who hunt them and use their furs and skins?

So much to wonder and think about from one very special book.