Baek, Heena. Moon Pops. Owlkids, 2021. 978-1-771-47429-0. Unpaged $19.95. Grades PreK-K.
In Korean folklore, the full moon is associated with a rabbit pounding items with a mortar and pestle. Author and illustrator Heena Baek puts a unique spin on this folklore in her story Moon Pops (translated from the original Korean by Jieun Kiaer). One hot night, in a city populated by animals, the residents of an apartment building attempt to sleep and escape the heat. When a steady dripping noise is heard, Granny (a wolf) discovers that the moon is melting! She runs outside and catches the moon drops with her bucket. Back in her apartment, she ponders what to do with the moon drops, when the idea of making cool, refreshing moon pops (ice pops made with moon drops). When a power outage hits the building (due to too many folks running their air conditioning), Granny distributes her refreshing moon pops to her neighbors, who are refreshed and cooled by the icy treats. Later, a knock is heard at Granny’s door–it is a pair of rabbits, dejected by the loss of their now melted moon home. Thankfully, Granny has another idea up her sleeve that might just result in the restoration of the moon. The story is illustrated with photographs of mixed media 3D dioramas that give the setting and characters depth and make excellent use of the elements of light and shadow. Of special note are the moon pops themselves, which emanate a glowing light reminiscent of the moon.
THOUGHTS: This title easily could be incorporated into units on folklore, Korea, or animal stories. After reading the story, students will want to enjoy an icy treat themselves–why not go out and enjoy popsicles as a class or create your own as a class project. Highly recommended.
Picture Book Elizabeth Henry, Lampeter-Strasburg SD
Perdew, Laura. Picture Book Science. Nomad Press, 2021. $8.96 ea. $116.48 set of 13. 29 p. K-3.
The Earth: One-of-a-Kind Planet. 978-1-619-30984-5.
The Moon: Small-but-Mighty Neighbor. 978-1-619-30988-3.
The Stars: A Gazillion Suns. 978-1-619-30988-3.
The Sun: Shining Star of the Solar System. 978-1-619-30992-0.
Endearing alien narrators tell the story of the sun, moon, Earth, and stars. The narrators discuss how they were all formed and how they are all related. Hands-on activities and glossaries are included in the end matter of each book, giving readers even more opportunities for learning. These informative, easy-to-follow narratives of our solar system are a solid addition to any elementary science collection.
THOUGHTS: I personally received and reviewed The Moon: Small-but-Mighty Neighbor, but there are actually four new releases in the Picture Book Science series (listed above). Additionally, there are 9 other previously published books in the series on topics such as energy, animal adaptations, and more. I especially like how these books bring scientific topics down to a level easily understood by elementary schoolers, and I appreciate the extension activities included in the books.
523 Solar System Julie Ritter, PSLA Member
Bausum, Ann. Moonbeams: A Lullaby of the Phases of the Moon. Little Bee Books. 2020. 978-1-499-81033-2. $17.99. Grades K-3.
The lullaby of the world calling to the moon and the moon calling back is an exquisite read. People and animals all over the world call out to the moon, “What do you see?” and the moon responds in kind with that it sees and the phase that the moon is at. As the moon travels through phases, the callers are never alone, even when the moon is not able to be seen. The callers know that they are never alone, wrapped up in the guiding light and hug of the moon.
THOUGHTS: This swell lullaby of the phases of the moon provides a simple story to young readers. More advanced readers will enjoy the informational portion at the back of the book that is filled with information about the moon itself, phases of the the moon and what they mean, and extended information that can be accessed both online and in print.
Picture Book Rachel Burkhouse, Otto-Eldred SD