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Sunday, August 7, 2011

Look At That Building, written and illustrated by Scot Ritchie. Kids Can Press, 2011. $16.95 ages 4 and up

"A foundation is the lowest part of a building. It keeps the rest of the building stable by anchoring it securely in the ground.
The taller a building is, the deeper and larger its foundation has to be. Some skyscrapers' foundations go four floors underground!"

If  your kids want to know how buildings are built, and how they hold together, this is a book that they will want to read. Yulee, Martin, Nick, Pedro and Sally are interested in knowing the same thing, and they are off to find out about them. I love the bird's eye view as they take a close look at those structures that we will return to in upcoming pages.

Sally has a tree house, and her friends are excited to see it. Again, we and the birds, get a close look at the house, the children inside and poor Max (the dog) sitting at the bottom of the tree, unable to climb up with them. That gets them thinking that maybe they could learn more about building a doghouse for Max,  if they get a book about it.

As they go, they notice much about the places on their route...a construction site, the floor and  beams in the library itself and even the constructions that animals make...nests, webs, and others. As they pass the school, they take note of the walls and other walls they can see nearby. Their learning has just begun.

Scot Ritchie makes that learning fun, and helps young readers to notice many things that they may not have thought about in their trips around town. He introduces foundations, beams, frames and shapes while entertaining us with comic-like artwork that tells more than the text does. Readers will learn as they go, and in the end, be ready to try a structure on their own. He provides the instructions in a clear step by step method that is very easy to follow. Max is going to love it!

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