Cover image for Grandmother fish : a child's first book of evolution
Title:
Grandmother fish : a child's first book of evolution
ISBN:
9781250113238
Edition:
1st Feiwel & Friends ed.
Physical Description:
29 unnumbered pages : color illustrations ; 23 x 27 cm.
Added Author:
Summary:
Where did we come from? It's a simple question, but not so simple an answer to explain -- especially to young children. Charles Darwin's theory of common descent no longer needs to be a scientific mystery to inquisitive young readers. Meet Grandmother Fish. Told in a call and response text where a child can wiggle like a fish or hoot like an ape and brought to life by vibrant artwork, this book takes children and adults through the history of life on our planet and explains how we are all connected. The book also includes comprehensive backmatter, including an elaborate illustration of the evolutionary tree of life; helpful science notes for parents; and how to explain natural selection to a child.
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Summary

Summary

Where did we come from? It's a simple question, but not so simple an answer to explain-especially to young children. Charles Darwin's theory of common descent no longer needs to be a scientific mystery to inquisitive young readers. Meet Grandmother Fish.Told in an engaging call and response text where a child can wiggle like a fish or hoot like an ape and brought to life by vibrant artwork, Grandmother Fish takes children and adults through the history of life on our planet and explains how we are all connected.The book also includes comprehensive backmatter, including:- An elaborate illustration of the evolutionary tree of life- Helpful science notes for parents- How to explain natural selection to a child


Author Notes

Jonathan Tweet has been an innovative game designer for over 25 years and a fan of evolution for even longer. His award-winning games are well-known for engaging the players' imaginations and encouraging creative participation. Grandmother Fish, his first children's book, took 15 years to complete. It began when he couldn't find a book to help him teach his daughter about evolution, so he decided to write one himself.Karen Lewis is a Seattle-based illustrator for children's storybooks, history, and science. She strives to make her art accessible, accurate and visually delicious. She's the resident cartoonist for Cobblestone, an American history magazine for kids. Her children's books include Will it Blow - Become a Volcano Detective at Mount St. Helens, Amazing Alaska and Arturo and the Navidad Birds.


Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-This groundbreaking volume makes the complex theory of evolution accessible to young children. Using simple vocabulary in clear, direct sentences (for instance, "This is our Grandmother Fish. She lived a long, long, long, long, long time ago."), the author avoids concepts like specific prehistoric time periods-which are beyond a young child's comprehension-to create a truly inclusive work. The words and illustrations work beautifully together, showcasing the abilities of our ancestors and asking readers and listeners if they can do these same actions. Can readers, for example, wiggle or chomp like Grandmother Fish? Can they crawl and breathe in and out like Grandmother Reptile? The text and illustrations also invite further active participation, and this, too, makes the book understandable. Can readers find Grandmother Mammal among the illustrations of other relatives? Can they find Grandmother Ape? The book ends by noting that "Grandmother Human has many kinds of grandchildren" and reveals humans of different ages and races. Exemplary back matter includes a colorful, clearly labeled double-page diagram titled "Our Evolutionary Family Tree," which is excellent for close examination and discussion; examples of how to explain concepts of evolution to children; and suggestions for correcting common misunderstandings. There is a note addressed to parents, teachers, babysitters, and other readers, encouraging them to adapt the book and resources according to the needs of the child. VERDICT This selection can be revisited again and again as students refine their understanding of evolution. Highly recommended for homes, schools, and libraries.-Myra Zarnowski, City University of New York © Copyright 2016. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Horn Book Review

In a folktale-esque narrative ("Grandmother Fish had many kinds of grandchildren"), this book draws a path from fish to human along a branch of the evolutionary tree. Friendly illustrations paired with text inviting young readers to move or sound like animals make the subject approachable. An appendix includes "our evolutionary family tree" and extensive notes explaining concepts of evolution and how to discuss them with children. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Booklist Review

With simple text and vibrant, cheerful illustrations, this picture book offers a lively, accessible introduction to the theory of evolution to younger children. Opening with Grandmother Fish, who lived a long, long, long, long, long time ago and could wiggle and chomp, the text continues with direct-address questions (Can you wiggle?), which encourage animated read-alouds and active participation, as well as bold-type key terms. Grandmother Fish had many grandchildren, like Grandmother Reptile, who could wiggle, chomp, and crawl . . . and breathe air. In similar fashion, readers progressively meet Grandmother Mammal, Grandmother Ape, and, eventually, Grandmother Human (who could walk and talk), whose grandchildren can do all that and more. The enthusiastic narrator then says, I see one of them right here! and the accompanying illustration depicts a diverse group of smiling kids and adults. Though this is a complicated topic, the simplified presentation, cumulative format, and scrutiny-inviting visuals nicely illustrate evolutionary connections and provide a great starting point for further discussions. Back matter, geared toward adults, offers information on the book's content and suggestions to help further explain concepts.--Rosenfeld, Shelle Copyright 2017 Booklist