I'm always on the lookout for superb information books. I buy them and ship them off to our board for cataloguing. Eventually, long after I have forgotten I purchased them, they return. Yesterday became celebration day as I opened up the box containing this series - just in time for spring and summer explorations in the garden.
I concede that the ants I discovered in my kitchen this morning is what made me grab and read Inside the Ants' Nest by Karen Ang. I also admit that I wasn't thinking kind thoughts about ants as I perused the pages. In spite of this, I fell head over heals in love with the book and consequently, the entire series.
These are fabulous information books for younger and or struggling readers.
Of course these books have what I consider the bare necessities - table of contents, glossary, and index, but there is so much more to these. Each pair of pages has a clear title. The text is simple and straight forward. The books are loaded with brilliant photographs and illustrations. The close ups are spectacular, albeit slightly creepy, especially the one of the queen ant being fed by the worker. Each book includes an inset map showing where these animals live. There are labeled diagrams and fact boxes. The occasional question box leaves the reader wondering and wanting to read more. Each book contains a section near the end titled Science Lab, that provides guidelines and questions for readers interested in thinking like a scientist and creating a report. I like that there is also a section at the end that directs the reader to other books on the topic. There are also online links. The biokids link did have considerable more detail about ants. I especially appreciated the section "What roles do they have in the ecosystem?"
Unfortunately neither the book nor the links helped me come up with a plan for how to get rid of the ants that have decided to move in with me. I'll have to hope the borax and sugar I left out does the trick.
We have four in this series: I'll try to track down the rest of them.
Inside the Bees' Hive also by Karen Ang,
Inside the Cricket's Burrow by Dawn Bluemel Oldfield
and Inside the Spider's Web by Natalie Lunis.