HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Over in Australia: Amazing Animals Down Under
Author: Marianne Berkes
Illustrator: Jill Dubin
Publisher: Dawn Publications, 2011
ISBN-13: 978-1-58469-136-5 (paperback)
ISBN-13: 978-1-58469-135-8 (hardback)
Language level: 1 (nothing objectionable)
Reading level: Ages 3-8
Rating: 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Berkes, Marianne. Over in Australia: Amazing Animals Down Under (published in 2011 by Daw Publications, 12404 Bitney Springs Rd., Nevada City, CA 95959). Do you know what a brolga is? I surely didn’t until I read this book. Providing both fascinating information about different animals in Australia and fun reinforcement in learning how to count, author Marianne Berkes tells how one crocodile hatchling snaps, two little wallabys hop, three baby koalas munch, four platypups (platypus pups) splash, five rainbow lorikeets chit, six wombat joeys dig, seven sugar gliders lap, eight brolga chicks dance, nine bilbies slurp, and ten emus zig. By the way, the brolga is a kind of tall bird in the crane family.
Over in Australia uses cute rhymes that children will adore and is filled with gorgeous illustrations by Jill Dubin. In addition, at each opening there is a surprise hidden animal to find! You might just see a kookaburra, although I don’t know if he’s sitting in an old gum tree. Also in the back are several pages of activities and further information about the animals. Other books by Berkes that follow the “Over in the Meadow” pattern are Over in the Ocean, Over in the Jungle, both of which I have read and reviewed, and Over in the Arctic. Dawn Publications is dedicated to inspiring in children a deeper understanding and appreciation for all life on earth, and further resources for teachers and parents can be downloaded from their website.