Thursday, May 17, 2012

Picture Book (Science): Pandas' Earthquake Escape (Phyllis J. Perry)

In honor of Endangered Species Day, I am highlighting Pandas' Earthquake Escape. This book is compliments of Sylvan Dell Publishing.  They have  numerous wonderful books on animals, many of which are endangered.   

Summary of Pandas' Earthquake Escape (by Phyllis J. Perry):
On May 12, 2008, a 7.9 earthquake rocked northern China.  Following this natural disaster, a giant panda escaped from the safe reserve he lived on.  Author Phyllis Perry uses that incident as inspiration for this fictional story about a mother panda (Liling) and her cub (Tengfei).  The two giant pandas are sleeping in a tree when it begins to shake violently, causing Tengfei to fall out of it.  Her frightened mother quickly checks on her.  Finding she is well, the two-some begin running.  They come to the wall that keeps them safely in the reserve.  In the chaos and panic, they continue to run with Liling leading the way.  When Tengfei gets separated from his mother, he begins to cry out.   Fortunately, they are reunited.  Deeper and deeper they flee into the forest where they eventually find a cave to take cover in.  The two pandas huddle close until they feel safe enough to leave to forage for food and water.  The workers from the reserve eventually find them and return them safely to their home. 

Pandas' Earthquake Escape depicts how wild life is impacted by natural disasters.   Even in the midst of the confusion, though, the mother is quick to protect her young.   Animals have amazing survival instincts and resilient spirits.  This book reminds us how the panda’s habitat and food supply are endangered. As a result, there are reserves (like the one shown in this book) that help protect them, so they may continue to thrive and multiply. The story, though fictional,  is believable and appealing.  Artist Susan Detwiller has created striking illustrations with texture and depth.  The pandas’ features and emotions are captured brilliantly.  Their habitat is vivid and realistic.   I recommend this book for ages 4 and up. 

Sylvan Dell is an educational partner with parents and teachers.  They provide books on science and math concepts to accompany and promote learning at home and in school.   In addition, there are always valuable resources on the book pages, including a free teaching resource guide with lots of extension activities. 

This post is linked up with Read Aloud Thursday at Hope is the Word.  

Disclaimer: As per FTC guidelines, I received a copy of this book from the publisher or author in exchange for my honest review. I received no monetary compensation. All opinions expressed here are mine and mine alone.

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