Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday (13)

As part of the Non-Fiction Picture Book Challenge 2012 (Twitter: #nfpb2012), my goal is to read and review as many of the new non-fiction picture books that are released this year.  Wednesdays will be my primary day to post the reviews.

I just realized that today is the last Wednesday of the month.  Where did April go?  Seriously!!!  It is time for a giveaway.  And it is also National Poetry Month.  So I might be stretching this a bit to fit a poetry book into a nonfiction review, but I'll share why below.   My nonfiction giveaway of the month will be a copy of Douglas Florian's unBEElievables.  You have until Wednesday, May 2, 2012 to enter the contest.  It is open to international participants. 

Author/Illustrator:  Douglas Florian
Publisher:  Beach Lane Books (March 2012)
Number of Pages: 32
Source: Personal Copy
Audience: K-5
Poetry * Bees * Nonfiction

Description from the publisher's page:
The buzz is big for Douglas Florian’s new poetry collection about the unBEElieveably unique lives of honeybees—and the vital role they play in our ecosystem. Come inside the honeycomb—a busy, buzzy, bee-filled home—and learn about the unexpected wonders of these tiny insects’ lifestyles, families, and communities. In fourteen funny, fact-filled honeybee poems and paintings, Douglas Florian explores the natural history of these often-unappreciated critters, revealing them to be a totally cool—and totally important—part of our ecosystem. Indeed, these buzzy bugs have been in the spotlight lately as wild bee populations are dwindling, honey prices are rising, and beekeeping has become a popular hobby. 

My thoughts on this book:
When I first saw this book, I fell in love with it.  My initial thought was how cool to mix poetry and nonfiction in the same book. Florian has a brilliant concept within the pages of this book.  There are 14 poems about bees (bees, bee anatomy, queen bees, types of bees, and more), and they are all very accessible for children (or for those adults who are still trying to figure out poetry).  Though I really enjoyed the poetry, I was impressed with how each poem was accompanied by a corresponding "bee fact" about the same topic as the poem.  There was even a few further reading suggestions at the end.

This is certainly one of those books that can be used with various grade levels and also in different parts of a curriculum.  I love books that I can keep referring to all through the year and not just for a specific unit or feature in a month.  I also like things that I can share with more than one grade level and allows for multi-age projects.  Additionally, Florian's illustrations had this great "kid" feel to them which gave me ideas of how to combine both art and poetry into a lesson for the students.

If you want a chance to check out this book, don't forget to enter the giveaway (no reviews necessary but you do need to fill out the form.) 

Also, if you are participating in the Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge, link up a recent review. 

Don't forget to add a link to your own nonfiction picture book reviews from this past week. Thanks for participating in the challenge.