Friday, October 26, 2012

Whales by Seymour Simon

Book Review- Whales by Seymour Simon
A.    Bibliography
Simon, Seymour.1989. Whales. New York, New York: Harper Collins. ISBN 0060877103
B.    Summary
Did you know that the humpback whale is longer than a bus and heavier than a trailer truck? And, the tongue of a blue whale weighs as much as an elephant! In this informative book, Seymour Simon, a trusted name in science, guides us through the underwater world of whales.
After interesting information about the whale species, Simon goes on to give us insight into the different types of whale. For instance, have you ever seen a whale that looked like a unicorn? This type of whale is called the narwhal, and it is known for its long tusk that sticks out several feet from its head! From the popular orca to the mammoth blue whale, Whales offers insight into Earth’s largest mammals.
C.    Critical Analysis
Whales is a collaboration between two very trusted names in nonfiction: Seymour Simon and the Smithsonian Institute. Simon pairs his flowing facts with lush, full-color photographs. The text moves from general whale information to specific facts about various whales. There is a short glossary and index located on the back of the book for reference. The book is recommended for ages 5-9; however, I would venture to say it is more appropriate for ages 9-12.  Some of the vocabulary is challenging with no subheadings for quick scanning.
D.    Review Excerpts
·         From Publisher’s Weekly: “…lucid, informative look at these intriguing behemoths.”

E.     Connections and Classroom Activities
·         Create a “Did you know..” mural or bulletin board about whales
·         Use this as a kick-start to a unit on sea creatures, mammals, or Seymour Simon’s work


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