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Friday, November 4, 2016

Plants Can't Sit Still, written by Rebecca E. Hirsch and illustrated by Mia Posada. Millbrook, Thomas Allen & Son. 2016. $30.99 ages 4 and up

"Plants can creep.
They slither underground
or crawl through tall grass
searching for the things
that all plants need:
water, sunshine, and
room to grow. And as
they search, plants can ... "

Who knew that plants moved in so many ways? Kids will be impressed with the learning this book presents in such an impressive and seemingly simple way. The text is not wordy. It moves across the double page spreads with the same grace as the plants themselves, offering up just enough information to satisfy its young audience. Word choice is exceptional, as you can see from the opening quote.

The watercolor and collage artwork fully captures the elegance of the flora described as they wiggle, reach, search , climb, surprise, nod and fold. I could go on. The images show plants as seeds, vines, flowers, fruits; each is as glorious as the next. They move for good reason, and we are witness to each search for the perfect spot to grow and flourish.

This is such a striking collaboration of words and pictures. It is sure to become a favorite for young scientists wanting to know about the natural movements of mostly familiar plants.

In back matter, the author adds a section that provides further information:

"Although scientists understand the reasons for many plant movements, sleep movements are mysterious. It is not always clear why plants fold or droop at night. For some plants, this may help keep them warm during the dark, cold night. For others, sleep movements may prevent nighttime animals from munching on them."

Older readers will be impressed with this. She goes on to describe each of the pictured plants and its species with a short paragraph of pertinent facts. Following that, there is an author's note meant to describe some of  her research, a glossary, and a list of books and websites to satisfy those wanting to learn even more.

I thought you might find the following videos enlightening and worthy of your attention. Enjoy!

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