Tree of Wonder: The Many Marvelous Lives of a Rainforest Tree is written by Kate Messner and illustrated by Simona Mulazzani. At first, this seems to be a beautiful counting book, filled with rainforest animals that inhabit the Almendro tree, but we quickly discovered that this book is much more than that!
Tree of Wonder showcases the animals that live in the almendro tree, through counting. This book could be read in different ways, I really appreciate that because to me it means it would appeal to wide age range. On each page, a quick sentence or two introduces the animal. Shadows of the animal for each page is represented in the amount that lives on the tree, for example 4 keel-billed toucans. These shadows are perfect to practice counting, even to the highest number of 1,024 for the leafcutter ants! Each animal page also has extra information, great for learning a little more.
There is a section at the back of the book named "Rainforest Math", with 5 levels of difficulty. These math problems were fun to do! The author also included some suggestions for learning more about rainforests, the almendro tree, and the animals living there.
Celeste and I were first attracted to this book by its colourful and vibrant illustrations. As we read the story, we became curious about the animals and the tree and wanted to dig a little deeper.
We watched the documentary mentioned in the book while doing a little art project.
Celeste enjoys working with pastels and we both did a rainforest themed picture. She continued on for much longer than I did! I think she was working on this for over two hours, adding pastels then blending it, then adding more..it's a fun messy medium to work with.
You can find Tree of Wonder: The Many Marvelous Lives of a Rainforest Tree at: Amazon.ca
and check your local bookstore!
Disclosure: I received a sample book for review from Raincoast Books. All opinions expressed are completely honest and my own, based on my personal experience. Your experience may differ. The amazon.ca link is an associate link.