Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Night Becomes Day by Richard McGuire

Night Becomes Day by Richard McGuire
Rating: 4.5 stars

This is a random and unique and neat journey that takes the reader from day to night with one long poem and 1940s-style drawings that illustrate the journey (and help explain that the book actually is a journey to young readers).  Plus, it's a good way to teach the basic concept of environmentalism--oh and life, too: everything comes from somewhere or things are connected. 

Here's a sample of the first four pages:

"Night becomes day / And day becomes bright / Bright becomes sun / And sun becomes shine / Shine becomes sparkle / And sparkle becomes stream / Stream becomes river / And river becomes ocean."

And building becomes cloud
The book continues on in calm, lilting pattern until "Good becomes night" (at which Lorelei said the other day, "Hey!  He's saying good night!").  Ben loves the illustrations, Lorelei likes how one thing leads to another, and I like how the book shows and tells how everything is interconnected. 

There's even an overtly environmental part, about recycling, where "Trees become paper / And paper becomes news / News becomes trash / And trash becomes new."  With this book we've really had some good conversation about where things come from, especially paper and water.  We're not over-the-top green (we shamelessly but with a few tiny good reasons drive two SUVs, so we'd have to make some major changes in our life to drastically reduce our giant-sized carbon foot print!) but we try to do our part.  Little messages like this help me teach our kids.

We've checked out a few books from McGuire, and we've liked the random-ness and neat-ness of all of them, but need to look at some more.  Hope you enjoy checking his books out, too!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the review. It sounds like a good teaching book about environmentalism. We'll be looking for it at the library. My kids just read a wonderful book called "The Thanksgiving Coat" by author Elizabeth A. Hoadley. It has great illustrations by the author's daughter and teaches children about homelessness, hunger and sharing. A real treasure!