Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Picture Book (Science): The Glaciers are Melting (by Donna Love)

Summary of The Glaciers are Melting
As Peter Pika sticks his head out of the rock entrance to his home, a drop of water falls on his head.  Just as Chicken Little is convinced the sky is falling when an apple falls on his head, Peter Pika is sure the glaciers are melting when he feels that drop.  The little pika ventures off to find the Mountain Monarch to ask him what they should do.  As he journeys, many friends join him—Tammy Ptarmigan, Sally Squirrel, Mandy Marmot, and Harry Hare.  Each of the five friends is fearful of how the glaciers’ melting will affect them.  While they are resting, Wiley Wolverine sneaks out from behind the rocks and convinces them they are going the wrong way.  Before the Wiley Wolverine traps them in his lair, the Mountain Monarch comes to the animals’ rescue.  Unfortunately, he cannot help them stop the glaciers from melting. 

Donna Love cleverly uses the Chicken Little story framework to bring to the surface a genuine environmental threat.  After the Mountain Monarch reveals to the animals they cannot do anything to stop the glaciers from melting, Peter Pika delivers the final question: “But who?”  Parents and teachers can use it as an opportunity to discuss ways humans can make more responsible choices, such as recycling, carpooling, and turning unnecessary lights off.  The striking pictures (which I can't help but keep looking at over and over again) by Shennen Bersani illustrate the arctic habitat and the creatures who live there—many of which are not familiar animals to young children.  Using the resources provided by Sylvan Dell as well as Internet and library ones, children can research with their parents and learn more about these threatened animals and their habitat.  As you read together, discuss the alliteration in all the names (same beginning sound).  Brainstorm other words or find ones in the book with the same beginning sound.  Use a Venn Diagram to compare/contrast Chicken Little to The Glaciers are Melting!  Children can also participate in choral reading as key phrases are repeated in the text.  The appealing characters, vivid pictures, and familiar framework make this book ideal for children ages 3-9. 

As with all of Sylvan Dell’s picture books, there are activity pages in the back of the book, an across the curriculum teacher’s guide, and other resources at their website.  Also, Teacher Bits and Bobs has a beautiful Arctic Life:  Math and Literacy Centers unit.

For other books on arctic animals highlighted on Books4Learning, click HERE.


  1. This book brings awareness about a much needed subject...great review and thanks.

  2. Oh my gosh, this book looks adorable!

  3. Great lesson to be taught at a young age

    mk261274 at gmail dot com

  4. Cute!! Like how they show u how to approach reachable lesson
    Wuera_mermaid22 at hotmail.com

  5. Good topic and a hard one for little ones to grasp.


  6. I love these books. They are soo educational for our children, and so timely in their issues.

  7. My 5 year old granddaughter would so love this.

    alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com


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