Friday, October 14, 2011

Let's Look at Dinosaurs - a review for STEM Friday

STEM Friday is here today!
(Science. Technology. Engineering. Mathematics.)
Please add your link below and thanks for stopping by!

Barry, Frances. 2011. Let’s Look at Dinosaurs: A Flip-the-Flap Book. Somerville, MA: Candlewick.

This book may skew a bit younger than your average STEM Friday contribution (ages 3-7), but it caught my eye for several reasons. First, I thought it needed rescuing. A thick (and very appealing) cover with substantial pages containing large foldouts and flaps, necessitates a wide and somewhat fluid spine. Due to the slack in the spine, or perhaps a difficult trip through the delivery process, mine already had a slight tear in the spine upon arrival. Since it’s such a nice book, I rescued it, and added it to my storytime collection, rather than putting it on the shelf.

It’s a worthy addition to the storytime collection, whether it needs rescuing or not. Many books about dinosaurs for the very young fall into one of two categories – too difficult or unrealistic. Let’s Look at Dinosaurs (567.9) strikes a perfect balance. The attractive collage art is both realistic and inviting. A wide book, its double-spread illustrations help convey the size of dinosaurs, though sadly, they are not in proportion to one another except on the front and end papers. Flaps are used for varying purposes: a 3D effect for the flying Pterodactylus, a neck extension for the huge Diplodocus, a pronounced frill for Triceratops. Each of the twelve dinosaurs represented has a foldout or pop-out component.
The artwork, however, is not the only draw for this book. Each dinosaur is listed by its name in large font, followed by a question,
I wonder why Anklyosaurus has a club at the end of his tail.

 The facing page contains a simple, large font answer,

It is made of solid bone; he uses it against attackers.

and strategically placed additional details in a smaller font, presumably for older readers,

Many dinosaurs had spikes and horns for protection against predators.

The final two spreads contain a very simple and concise explanation of fossils, and a cut out of dinosaur bones as seen in a museum.

Artwork and age-appropriate language and presentation make this a stellar introduction to dinosaurs.

Oh, one more thing – you’d better know your dinosaur pronunciations before reading this one aloud. You won’t find them here.
STEM Friday is looking for hosts for upcoming Fridays.  If you'd like to host, check out the STEM Friday site.
If you have difficulty using Inlinkz, please feel free to leave a comment and I'll add your post later.


  1. I like your linky, although I had trouble typing my blog name :-)

    Looks like we are animal-centric today.

    Thank you for hosting.

  2. Sorry that you had trouble, Roberta, but thanks for persevering!

  3. Thanks so much for including my book, Garter Snake at Willow Creek Lane, in our STEM Friday roundup. Happy Reading to All!

  4. Thanks for rescuing my book! Thanks too for your kind words, its much appreciated.
    Best wishes Frances