HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Crinkleroot’s Guide to Knowing the Trees
Author and Illustrator: Jim Arnosky
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Children’s Publishing, 1992
Language level: 1 (nothing objectionable)
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Rating: 4 stars (GOOD)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Arnosky, Jim. Crinkleroot’s Guide to Knowing the Trees (published in 1992 by Simon and Schuster Children’s Publishing). When I was growing up, we lived out in the country where there were many copses and thickets, and as we would go for walks in the woods my father often pointed out the different kinds of trees. In both eighth grade, when we studied life science, and tenth grade, when we studied biology, we had to make leaf collections. It is one of the things that I best remember from my school days. Even now, when I am out walking, I like to identify the different kinds of trees that I see. And both of our boys have done leaf collections too.
In this illustrated introduction to trees and woodlands with information on how to identify the bark and the leaves, the many ways that animals use trees, and how to read the individual history that shapes every tree, Jim Crinkleroot invites youngsters to come along as he walks through hard- and softwood forests. How do you tell the difference? Crinkleroot knows: it’s the light and the air. His charts show the leaves, stems, and seeds that help young readers identify trees. Author and artist Jim Arnosky includes illustrations of leaves, seeds, needles, and seed cones in this easy-to-read-and-learn-from handbook.
The Crinkleroot nature books, though using a fictional character, are rather nice introductions for small children to various things in the world around us. Other books in the Crinkleroot series include Crinkleroot’s Guide to Walking in Wild Places, Crinkleroot’s Nature Almanac, Crinkleroot’s Visit to Crinkle Cove, Crinkleroot’s Guide to Knowing Butterflies and Moths, Crinkleroot’s Guide to Knowing the Birds, Crinkleroots Guide to Knowing Animal Habitats, Crinkleroot’s Twenty-Five Mammals Every Child Should Know. They are cute and are just right for youngsters who are just beginning to be interested in nature.