Thursday, February 17, 2011

101 Freaky Animals by Melvin and Gilda Berger

If you’ve never heard of babirusas, pangolins, okapis, narwhals, or cassowaries, you’ll want to look at this book. If you’ve never seen a flannel moth caterpillar, or a giant clam, or a hooded seal, or a red-lipped batfish, you’ll want to look at this book. Each page in this full-color paperback features a headline which includes the name of an animal and an interesting tidbit like “Sea Cucumbers Shoot Out Their Insides” (#79), or “Temminck’s Tragopans Inflate their Horns” (#95), accompanied by approximately five sentences in a fairly large font. The information, organized alphabetically by the animals’ names, varies and sometimes elaborates on the headline and sometimes gives additional interesting facts. The brevity of these paragraphs makes this book a great starting point for inquiry projects or discussions about questions and questioning strategies. This is a great pick for reluctant readers who are scoring around a fourth grade reading level on the STAR exam but aren’t interested in fiction.

Berger, Melvin & Glinda. 101 Freaky Animals. New York: Scholastic, 2010.

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