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Do you ever wonder how animals stay warm in the winter or cool in the summer? Well, they wonder how humans do too! In a twist of perspective, wild creatures question if humans use the same adaptation strategies that they do.
How do animals stay warm in the winter? Do they cuddle together in a tree or fly south to Mexico? Take a look through an animal’s eyes and discover the amazing ways animals cope with the cold in this call and response, rhythmic story:
Baby Fox: "Do they wrap their tails tight
‘round their bodies just right
as heaters to chase out the chill?"
Mama Fox: "No tail to drape them,
to cover and cape them.
Their blankets are cotton and wool."
Library Media Connection: Highly Recommended
"Young children often wonder how some animals can survive the winter cold. In this book, various young animals ask how humans can stay warm in the winter.
For example, a fawn asks its mama if humans grow hollow hair so they can trap heat during the cold months. Young readers will learn how these animals adapt to cold temperatures. Double-page illustrations capture the essence of the accompanying text. Eleven different animals are featured in this picture book which can be read as a stand-alone or as an introduction to a variety of science topics. School librarians and teachers will enjoy the additional information presented in “For Creative Minds” and, especially, the additional activities offered online through the publisher’s website. The teaching activities are cross-curricular and there are interactive quizzes available."
Sheila Acosta, Children’s Librarian, Cody Library, San Antonio, Texas [Editor’s Note: Available in e-book format and paperback.] HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
"A cozy “tail” compares the adaptations animals and humans have for surviving winter’s chill. Baby animals ask grown-ups how humans keep warm in the winter. A fox kit asks, “How do humans keep warm in the winter, Mama? / Do they wrap their tails tight / ’round their bodies just right / as heaters to chase out the chill?” Mama answers, “No fur tail for draping, / for covering and caping; / their blankets are cotton and wool.” Each baby in turn asks if humans adapt as they do. The wide variety of animals portrayed ensures that most winter adaptations are covered, though camouflage is lacking. The “For Creative Minds” section includes a spread of extensive further information and two pages of activities—matching animal to adaptation (the only place where the animals are identified by captioned thumbnails) and then sorting the animals into their four classes. More activities and learning materials are on the publisher’s website. Wald’s lifelike illustrations incorporate speech bubbles for the babies’ questions and include humorous imaginings of how humans would look with animals’ adaptations, e.g., a child with butterfly wings."
* The Feathered Quill: Reviewed by Ellen Feld
How do animals stay warm in the winter when the winds blow and the temperatures drop? Do they put on winter jackets and sit close to a fire? No? Then how do they stay warm? Other children’s books have asked these questions but this one, in a clever twist, answers them by having various animals ask their mothers how humans stay warm. Through this unique storyline, readers will learn how foxes, turtles, bears, birds and numerous other animals deal with the chill of winter. The drawings are bright and realistic and add much to the enjoyment of the book. Above each baby animal that asks the question is a bubble with an imaginary human dealing with winter the same way as that animal (with a fox tail, wings to fly south, etc.). As with all Sylvan Dell [now Arbordale] books, at the back are four pages of educational aids for teachers and parents with additional learning tools on their website.
Quill says: An excellent introduction to the various ways animals deal with the cold.
When summer heats up, animals find ways to stay cool. Do they dig under the dirt, grow special summer hair, or only come out at night? This companion to the popular picture book, A Warm Winter Tail, features many of same animals, but this time, with their summer adaptations, offering an important "compare and contrast" opportunity.
"...Budding naturalists will come away with a sense of the variety of ways wild animals living in temperate climates stay cool (human strategies, aside from sweating and swimming, aren’t covered). They will find further detail and activities related to seasonal adaptations both at the end and on the publisher’s website. With its companion volume, a first introduction to the topic."
School Library Journal
"In a rhyming text, Summer Tail takes a more lighthearted look at what animals do to keep cool in the summer. Each animal baby asks its mother if humans do whatever that animal does to stay cool. For instance, squirrels lick themselves to make heat disappear from their skin. Large paintings depict the animals enacting their summer routines, while a smaller pen-and-ink sketch shows a human trying to do the same." Susan E. Murray, formerly at Glendale Public Library, AZ from School Library Journal
"Author Carrie Pearson has penned two books in which she explores the biological seasonal changes in a creatively contrasted manner. In A Warm Winter Tail and A Cool Summer Tail (published by Arbordale Publishing), she inhabits the minds of young animals who wonder if human children prepare for the change in seasons in the same way that they do. A Cool Summer Tail features a baby fox asking his mother if humans stay cool in the summer by hanging out their tongues and panting. Baby bees ask if humans cool their hives by using their wings to blow in air, thus helping the Queen to survive. Baby hummingbirds wonder if humans migrate in search of a cooler summer home. In the end, a boy asks his mother if animals splash in a swimming pool to stay cool. In addition to the plethora of free online information offered on the publisher’s website, the final pages of both books include four pages of rich learning activities. These lessons, paired with Illustrator Christina Wald’s lovely detailed work and Pearson’s intriguing text, will undoubtedly enhance any study of the natural world and the fascinating creatures that inhabit it."