Ocean Animals from Head to Tail
This nonfiction picture book uses a playful guessing game to introduce eight different ocean animals and some unique aspects of their bodies. First, readers are shown a close-up illustration of an unusual part of an animal's body and asked to guess its owner: “What ocean animal has a head like this?” Then the following spread reveals the animal's name (e.g., “A hammerhead shark!”), along with an illustration of the whole animal in its habitat. There's also a brief description of the animal's traits with a special emphasis on the featured body part. For example, readers learn that a blue whale's mouth contains baleen, which help it capture krill to eat, and that the tail of a seahorse curls so it can hold on to sea plants for stability. Young children will recognize that every animal has its own distinctive features and body parts that help it survive. Author Stacey Roderick has created a perfect beginning exploration of the physical traits of ocean animals that's both engaging and informative. Paper collage illustrations by Kwanchai Moriya in bright, eye-catching colors bring the animals to vivid and appealing life. The fun, interactive nature of the guessing game makes this book ideal for a read-aloud. It would be a terrific addition to an early life-science class on the characteristics of living things or on types of ocean animals. A bonus spread includes information on eight more ocean animals.