Treemendous: Diary of a Not Yet Mighty Oak
Hello, world! This little acorn is so excited to grow!
Told in the diary entries of an acorn, this picture book follows a young acorn and its long life as an oak tree, from being buried by a squirrel to towering over other trees. The text communicates the basic science simply and with humor, and the illustrations up the fun factor! Parents will love the sweet story and charming illustrations, and teachers and librarians will love the extra resources at the back.
The pictures are charming, with the trees having slightly cartoonish, anthropomorphic features that are quite endearing. I am basing the gender of the tree on the fact that she talks about her mother and grandmother tree, and also the fact that she has eyelashes, whereas some trees do not. There are plenty of animals and insects populating the forest as well. Many of the illustrations have a glowing quality to them, showcasing light streaming through tree branches or illuminating a creek.
Introducing STEM topics, as well as environmental ones, at a young age is a great way to encourage young readers to enjoy science and to eventually pursue careers in it, and to take care of the earth. This book could lead to a lot of fun discussions and activities, such as trying to grow a seedingly from an acorn. Teachers who use picture books in elementary settings to teach about the natural world will want to include this among such tree books as Rusch's Zee Grows a Tree, Valentini's Stay, Little Seed and Long's Little Tree.