Monarch X-ing, by Pecki Sherman Witonsky | Dedicated Review
Review sponsored by Pecki Sherman Witonsky
The Children’s Book Review | August 28, 2017
Written by Pecki Sherman Witonsky
Age Range: 6 and up
Paperback: 58 pages
Publisher: SeaGrove Press (2016)
What to expect: Butterflies, Metamorphosis, Lifecycle, Nature Studies, Conservation
Monarch X-ing is a non-fiction picture book aimed at educating kids about the monarch butterfly.
This book follows children in an elementary school located in Cape May Point, New Jersey, as they study the monarch and learn about butterfly conservation in their own neighborhood. It begins with a one-page explanation of the threats that monarch butterflies are facing and how communities of experts, gardeners, naturalists, and children can work together to fill gardens with fragrant flowers for nectaring and milkweeds for monarch butterfly procreation.
Readers can follow the butterflies through the seasons. In spring the focus is on the natural history of the monarch and when the planting of milkweeds takes place. In summer the focus is the environment and gardens. Fall covers the butterfly migration and their arrival in Cape May Point, the butterfly life cycle, and the fascinating tagging and releasing process to monitor the butterflies’ migration.
Collage style photographs fill the pages with the butterflies in their natural environment, close ups of the life cycle (from egg to caterpillar to chrysalis to the metamorphosis of becoming the butterfly), and children making butterfly and milkweed-inspired artworks for a cross-learning experience. Bold and large fonts emphasize top priority points and create excitement with statements such as “Look! They are here!” The majority of the text is factual and interesting.
Monarch X-ing could be used as supporting material to enhance any elementary learning segment that covers butterflies (specifically the monarch), the life cycle, and conservation efforts. Through the imagery, it offers a wonderful sense of community in which the young work together with each other and adults to build a healthy pesticide free environment and a greater understanding of the beautiful monarch butterfly. Young and old naturalists unite!
About the Author
Pecki Sherman Witonsky has had a lifelong interest in the preservation of the environment and animals. From being the educational director of a nature center, to studying Rhesus monkeys in Nepal, to swimming with dolphins in Florida, and studying the majestic elephants of Kenya, (not to mention raising mischievous baby goats in her farm kitchen), she has gained enormous respect for the wonders of Mother Nature. Since moving to Cape May Point, through her garden, she has marveled at the delicate symbiosis between monarch butterflies and the milkweed plant. In recent years, as the increased use of pesticides has threatened the very existence of the Monarch, she has made it her mission to educate children about the need to grow pesticide free gardens for pollinators. Following a successful Monarch education program she introduced to a Cape May, New Jersey elementary school, she decided to write this book to show how the children enthusiastically planted their school’s garden with milkweeds and painted a mural to prepare for welcoming the monarchs butterflies. This book serves as an example of how children have chosen to save the Monarch butterfly. Pecki is also the author of “The Cave of Reconciliation,” a book which celebrates the common roots of Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
For more information, visit: https://www.facebook.com/PeckiShermanWitonsky/
Dedicated Reviews allow authors and illustrators to gain prompt visibility for their work. Pecki Sherman Witonsky sponsored this non-biased review of “Monarch X-ing.” Learn more about getting a book review …
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