I know I haven’t been as vigilant about science posting. Still, we’ve been at it, studying plants, including taking advantage of the National Botanic Garden’s new homeschool classes, peering in microscopes at onion cells and flower pollen, measuring trees and, as always, reading books and watching videos.
By far the best tree books we found were the four Tree Tales by Barbara Bash. Each book covers a different tree in a different place: the saguaro cactus, the douglas fir, the baobab, and the banyan. The books show a tree’s whole life span and how the tree fits into its ecosystem, both as a home for animals and, in some cases, a useful tree for humans as well. These books hit the sweet spot for me with science books. They were long enough to feel substantial, but not so long that they were overwhelming. They were narrative instead of blurby. And, so rarely these days, they had a beautiful writing style that was both informative and evocative. The author’s background is as a calligrapher, so even the lettering was lovely.
For videos, we greatly enjoyed Climbing Redwood Giants, which you can find on Netflix streaming here. The kids were captivated by just watching people climb these enormous trees. Can you imagine that some animals live their whole lives inside them? In case you don’t have Netflix, there’s a clip from the film here on Youtube: