Please enjoy the following post by contributor Emily Carter of The Pilot’s Wife, which originally appeared in May of 2010. Do you have a budding geologist in your family?
In my neck of the woods, Spring has sprung and it seems summer will be right at its heels. While there is certainly a multitude of winter outdoor activities, warmer temperatures are more likely to tempt me into natural places.
In light of that, I wanted to introduce you to a book that will hopefully inspire a trip into nature for your family as well.
The book I’m going to share with you today I discovered last fall at a science workshop for teachers that I attended. Our presenter loved tying in fabulous literature with her hands-on science lessons, so we hit it off quite well.
One of my favorites was If You Find a Rock written by Peggy Christian with photos by Barbara Hirsch Lember.
Peaceful and Poetic
This book is just so lovely in so many ways. Even the cover is so peaceful, don’t you think? With poetic prose, Peggy Christian invites us to find and classify rocks in a beautiful way.
From the first page:
If you find a rock,
a nice flat, rounded rock
that sits just right
in the corner of your finger,
then you have
a skipping rock.
You toss it out
in the water just so
and see it trip
across the surface,
making a chain
of spreading rings.
With text like this coupled with gorgeous hand-tinted black and white photographs, I believe any child would be enchanted.
My educator-brain runs through the possibilities for this gem of a book: an introduction to geology, a look at nature photography, different forms of poetry, a beautifully calming bedtime story. The list could go on.
Appeal for All Ages
I also love the diversity of readers this book would be appropriate for. My toddler is enamored with rocks right now and tries to pick them up everywhere, so I know he would enjoy looking at the photos. The author’s way of classifying is simple enough for younger students to be introduced to the idea of sorting items according to a system.
Older students could compare and contrast the different types of rocks with their scientific classifications, or even create their own books classifying other types of objects in different ways.
I know you won’t be disappointed in If You Find a Rock. If you have a rock lover in your home, I highly encourage you to find this book soon.
What’s inspiring you to get outside these days?