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I hate bugs. I’ve always loved reading about animals, sharks, whales, ugly sea creatures, dinosaurs, and even bugs. But I hate bugs. Yet they still fascinate me. Bugs on paper. Great. Bugs in the real world. Not great. I had a class project in fourth grade where I had to pin bugs to a styrofoam board. Probably my least favorite project to date. Still, I’m happy now to have a fascinating book for Micah to learn from and the hope that he’ll find the real bugs to be a little less of a nuisance than I find them to be. What is this book?
This book will teach your young child about what a bug is (versus an insect), how to find bugs and why they sting you, and the different kinds of bugs. They will learn the different ways bugs move and how they do it so quickly, some of the bugs that like to be inside and why they choose your house, how bugs work alongside us outside, and ways you can make bugs feel “at home” in your garden. There are two pages with buggy definitions so you kids can talk like bug experts. Have your kids search through the book for a fly that pops up in 15 different places. Tell them to watch for imposters. (There are two pages that show where the 15 flies are.)
As well, 19 different bug-gy insects (including arachnids) are each given a two-page spread with 5-6 facts given about them. Bees do a “waggle dance” to direct other bees to fresh flowers. Most ants live for about three months, but the queen can live for up to 15 years. Down with the queen. The wings of an owl moth have spots that look like eyes to scare away enemies. Four ladybugs were taken up into a NASA rocket for scientific research. Flies are gross (thanks Jeff Goldbloom). They have over 4,000 lenses to catch the slightest movement. They can hover, spin, fly forwards and backwards. Their spit softens food to make it easier to eat. It’s feet ooze a sort of glue to make it stick to things. As if you needed any more reason to squish them. A giant centipede is as large as a dinner plate, and tropical giant centipedes eat frogs, birds, and bats. Praying mantises like to eat their prey head first.
This was a really cool book. Micah is under the age range (below), but he likes taking this book down (along with the others) so that I will read it to him. He found a spider the other morning, touched it repeatedly while calling it a “bee.” I’m glad he enjoys it, and that he can learn about them here. I think this book was great, and the illustrations are great. I think it’s a cool idea and a helpful way to get your kids interested in the strange animals in our backyard, front yard, basement, attic, garden, back closet, and over our bed.
- Series: The Big Book of…
- Author/Illustrator: Yuval Zommer
- Beast Expert: Barbara Taylor
- Age Range: 3 – 5 years
- Hardcover: 64 pages
- Publisher: Thames & Hudson (April 18, 2016)
- Other reviews in this series:
- The Big Book of Beasts
- The Big Book of the Blue
Find it on Amazon and the Thames & Hudson!
Disclosure: I received this book free from Thames & Hudson. The opinions I have expressed are my own, and I was not required to write a positive review. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html.