Monday, December 13, 2010

Let's Look at Sloths

Sloths fascinate me, and not because I'm envious of their laid-back lifestyle (though I am). There are just so many curious facts about these odd, alien-looking creatures. For instance, a sloth moves so slowly that algae grows on its shaggy fur, turning the animal green and helping it to hide in leafy branches.

Let's Look at Sloths does a fine job introducing this unusual animal to beginning readers. The text covers the basics, such as where sloths live, what they eat, what they do (not much), and which animals are out to get them (jaguars, ocelots, snakes, and harpy eagles). I thought I knew a fair amount about sloths, but one fact surprised me: Sloths are good swimmers and move faster in water than on land. The well-chosen photographs reinforce the text's meaning. Some are quite dramatic, such as a close-up of a sloth's long, curved claw. Captions provide additional information. The book's backmatter includes a map showing the sloth's range, a diagram of a sloth, an index, glossary, and a list of recommended books and websites for more information. Let's Look at Sloths provides beginning readers with a good overview of a little known mammal and should be a big hit in the classroom.

Other books in the series take a look at armadillos, bats, brown bears, earthworms, iguanas, monarch butterflies, pigeons, prairie dogs, sea otters, sharks, sloths, and snails.

Let's Look at Sloths
by Janet Piehl
Lerner, 32 pages
Published: August 2010    

Today's host for Nonfiction Monday is at Books Together.

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