Jonny Lambert’s Bear and Bird: Learn to Share

DK Publishing. Oct. 2022. 24p. Board $12.99. ISBN 9780744064476.
Toddler-PreS–In this simple science-themed board book, Bear and Bird explore spring planting together. While the pair begin with the intention of simply moving a potted plant outside, other forest friends seek out their guidance in replanting trees and flowers of their own. They discover which size hole will fit each plant, and observe how their garden attracts bees. A note on the back of the book succinctly explains more about bees and pollination. The story is told in mostly smooth rhyme but ends quite abruptly. The short board book format that attempts to introduce several horticultural themes will be unlikely to instill any real STEM knowledge in readers without significant scaffolding or further explanation. Lambert’s skilled illustrations involving paint and collage are charming. Bird is flitting and colorful; Bear is lumbering and wide; the supporting cast of sweet forest critters keep the action rolling along. The text intermingles seamlessly with the illustrations, with a pleasant balance of color and white space.
VERDICT It may be too brief to teach much gardening, but this board book packs an abundance of good will and inspiration about helping out; for middle- to large-sized board book collections.

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