On a Snow-Melting Day: Seeking Signs of Spring


Product Details

Millbrook Press (Tm)
Publish Date
10.1 X 10.0 X 0.4 inches | 0.9 pounds
Library Binding

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About the Author

Buffy Silverman is the author of more than 90 nonfiction books for children, featuring topics from alligators to video games. Look for her nature-inspired poetry in anthologies and children's magazines, and visit her at www.buffysilverman.com.


"Using rhyming text and full-color photographs, Silverman introduces young listeners to the many signs that spring is arriving. The first three spreads declare, for example, 'On a drip-droppy, / slip-sloppy, / snow-melting day . . . / Squirrels cuddle. / Snakes huddle. / Clouds break. / Salamanders wake. / Icicles drip. / Chickadees sip.' Each phrase is illustrated with an appropriate photo, and many contain dripping ice or melting snow, appropriate to this changeable time of year. The well-crafted verses include expressive (sometimes invented) language that highlights the sights and sounds of late winter. The (mostly) stock photos are crisp-edged and well chosen; some, such as the chickadee sipping from an icicle, will amaze. As the story progresses, the photos depict more and more green, leading to the final spread, 'Welcome, spring!' which includes blooming flowers only. An author's note further clarifies details about the illustrations; a glossary and further reading are also appended. Pair with April Pulley Sayre's Bloom Boom! (2019) to delve further into spring."--Booklist


"Full-color photography and sparse, rhyming verse offer a look at early spring in a temperate climate. Text, art, and layout are clever, thoughtful, and engaging. One double-page spread gives the beginning of a sentence that will have several different endings over the pages that follow; the sequence is repeated four times. The opening pages start with 'On a drip-droppy, / slip-sloppy, / snow-melting day . . .' Each of those three descriptions is accompanied by a clear and beautiful stock photograph; contrasting black or white text over the photographs is large and legible. The pages that follow use rhyming couplets with their own photographs to end that preceding phrase: 'Squirrels cuddle. / Snakes huddle. / Clouds break. / Salamanders wake.' Plants, animals, and human beings are all included in the signs of spring; children will relate strongly to soaked mittens, boots in puddles, melting snowmen, and swinging on a tire swing. A particularly stunning photograph shows a chickadee, wings whirring, sipping water from a dripping icicle. Explanations of this and all the early spring phenomena depicted are offered at the back of the book, extending the age level from preschool to early primary grades. The overall theme, as well as the creative use of noun-verb combinations to form new adjectives, also lends itself to introducing children to the e.e. cummings poem that begins 'in Just-spring.' One photograph shows two humans, both presenting as white. Crocus-poking, mud-luscious enjoyment."--starred, Kirkus Reviews


"Spring arrives with melting snow, and plants and animals begin to come to life in a series of detailed photographs. Silverman's readable verse covers a wide array of familiar animals in their natural environments. Brisk rhymes and a musical refrain make this a lively nonfiction read-aloud. For example, in a two-page spread, Silverman writes, 'On a plink-plonking, marsh-mucking, duck-dabbling day . . .' The accompanying photos show a raindrop making ripples in a puddle, a snowy marshland in the process of unthawing, and two ducks sitting on top of an unidentified body of water. A section in the back matter covers scientific explanations for each animal or an event mentioned in the text. The glossary is extensive, and the list of further reading features several similar books, all published within the last five years. VERDICT A welcome addition to school libraries. Perfect for answering nature-related questions or crafting lesson plans."--School Library Journal