There’s lots to celebrate in the month of September: Labor Day, the return to school, the first day of autumn. And we recommend a shout out to. . .Elephants! That’s right, this year Elephant Appreciation Day falls on the Autumnal Equinox, a perfect day for a double celebration! In honor of the occasion, we are recommending two terrific non-fiction books to inform and delight readers with the wonders of elephants: one for tweens and teens and one for younger readers.
The Elephant Scientist by Caitlin O’Connor and Donna Jackson
Be prepared to be blown away by the photographs of these elephants in their native habitat in the African desert of Etosha National Park. The pictures add to the fascinating story of how Caitlin O’Connor–the “elephant scientist” lived and worked with the elephants, discovering, for example, that they can listen and talk through their feet, how adolescent elephants bond with adults, why they rely on truly excellent memories, and more. It’s not only an informative book about elephants and their lives, it’s also an intriguing story of the research process and how dedicated scientists in the field learn about the animals they are studying. This book is deserving of the many honors it has won, including an Outstanding Science Trade Book for Children award and an Orbis Pictus.
AND, for younger readers:
Elephants (True Books: Animals) by Melissa Stewart
When young children get information books like this one in their hands, they can experience the delights that non-fiction books have to offer. The pictures are clear and compelling, the text is engaging, and the features like side-bars, glossary, and index invite more in-depth understanding of the world of elephants. We also really liked the “To Find Out More” section, with lists of resources, books, Internet sites, and organizations devoted to the protection of elephants. Highly recommended!