Monday, July 23, 2007

26. A Mother's Journey by Sandra Markle


Nonfiction book annotation
By: Angela Wilcox
32 Pages



Markle, S. (2005). A mother’s journey. Watertown, MA: Charlesbridge Publishing.

Author Creditability: Markle has written over 70 children’s nonfiction books and has won many awards. She has been chosen twice to participate in the National Science Foundation’s program for authors in Antarctica. It was there she got the idea’s for this book. She also had help from professors and ecologists that specialize in the study of penguins.

Summary: This is a story of an Emperor penguin that lays her egg and leaves it with the male while she goes to hunt for food and avoids being eaten by predators. It takes the reader through the time period of the egg being laid to the birth of the chick. Markle does a wonderful job of helping the reader to understand what all the mother penguin has to go through to get food for her baby and mate and make it back to them alive.
Most Important Access Features: This book had background information on the author’s preparation for writing the book on the verso. There is inset text used to help with mileage conversions. The back end page has fascinating facts, other books to read, websites, and more on the author’s research if the reader wanted to further their study on penguins.

Description of Illustrations: Alan Marks used watercolor and ink to illustrate the illustrations in this book. The illustrations compliment the book very well and help the reader to understand what the penguins are going through just to survive.

Grade Level & Uses: K-5; This book would be appropriate to use while studying penguins or Antarctica. An inquiry project on penguins or mothers and their babies could be done.
Standards: Science as inquiry; Life Science
Related Texts & How Related: The following books could be used with A Mother’s Journey to do a unit on penguins or Antarctica.

The Emperor Lays an Egg by Brenda Guilberson & Joan Paley
The Emperor’s Egg by Martin Jenkins & Jane Chapman
Antarctica by Helen Cowcher
Penguins by Gail Gibbons
Emperor Penguins by Patricia Trattles

Quality/Awards:
2006 Boston Globe Horn Book Honor Book for nonfiction
2005 CBC/NSTA Award Winner

Personal Response to Book: I like how this book flowed very well. The author told about Emperor penguins, but did not lose the flow or craft of telling a story. It did not seem like you were reading a nonfiction text piece on penguins, it was more like a story.

1 comment:

Tassie Rosamond said...

I do a bird unit with my fifth graders and focus mostly on owls and nesting birds. I think that this would be a good book to use to expand my unit to include other types of birds. With all the penguin movies that are out, I thing students would be interested.