When Winter Comes: Discovering Wildlife in Our Snowy Woods by Aimee M. Bissonette; illustrated by Erin Hourigan. 2020. Published in Sasquatch Books.
Brief summary: A family goes playing in the snow sharing with young readers what is under the snow such as hibernating animals and animal homes that live in the winter wilderness. They go ice fishing and share what is under the frozen ice. They go skiing and comment about the creatures in the trees. We learn what animals and humans do when Winter comes.
Comments: I like how the family is shown living in the snow and how the animals are coexisting. This would be great to share with a winter unit.
Knock Knock by Tammi Sauer; illustrated by Guy Francis. 2018.
Brief summary: Bear is trying to get ready for winter and settle into hibernation when he keeps getting interrupted with knocks on his door.
Comments: A cute and clever story unfolds with the illustrations moving the story along with each knock knock joke. I would introduce this with the kindergarten unit on how animals get ready for winter.
Winter Dance by Marion Dane Bauer; illustrated by Richard Jones. 2017.Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
Brief summary: A beautiful fox sees that winter is coming and asks the forest animals what to do. He learns that the woolly caterpillar will wrap itself in a chrysalis. The turtle tells him to bury himself in the mud. The fox continues asking the forest animals and realizes that he cannot do what they do. He comes across another fox as the snow begins to fall and learns what foxes do.
Comments: This is a beautiful, softly illustrated story that explains how the forest prepares for winter. This is a great addition for those season book collections teachers request.
Dormouse Dreams by Karma Wilson; illustrated by Renata Liwska. 2017. Pencil, colored digitally.
Brief summary: The dormouse is deep asleep in his tree unaware of winter slowly turning to spring. The snow melts and animals come out of hibernation all around him while he continues to sleep and dream. A friend knocks on his door and wakes him. They get married and then are seen in the tree dreaming together.
Comments: This is an adorable book about that time when winter starts to slowing disappear and the hibernating animals are coming out to greet spring. This is not a narrative nonfiction book as several of the forest creatures are playing with darts, skiing and engaging in other outdoor games while the little dormouse is asleep in a tree above them.
I looked up dormouse, because I did not remember ever hearing about these type of mice when I was growing up. I found out why. First, they are not mice but are related more to squirrels. Also, they are not found in the United States but are in Europe, Africa, and Asia. They do hibernate for a long time– six months or more.
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