Do you see the shadow of the hawk as it soars above, hunting its next meal, or the swoop of the swallow in flight?
Do you see the pine needles, chestnut, oak and maple leaves all mixed together?
Gamblin’s doctoral research inspired the “See to Learn” series. Forest is a picture book that will have children looking all around the next time they take a walk in the woods. Patkau’s realistic looking digital illustrations show a variety of people walking through the woods as the seasons change. Questions on the page match what can be found in the illustrations. There are small details on the ground to look for, such as footprints, shadows, spiders, leaves, and pine needles. Looking higher up on the bushes and trees reveals caterpillars, mushrooms, and mosses. And looking up at the sky, children will see sunsets, birds, clouds, bees, and skies that are filled with falling leaves and snowflakes. Spring scenes show a doe and fawns in fields of flowers. Because none of the questions are answered within the text, children will be prompted to answer when they hear the book being read aloud. Children with a keen eye for “I Spy” type books will find tiny ladybugs on several pages. Back material in Forest includes an author’s note and a bibliography of books for young and older children.
Fans of the series will be pleased to know that Lake will be appearing in Fall, 2020.
Tanya Boudreau is a librarian at the Cold Lake Public Library in Cold Lake, Alberta.