All Around Me I See is a good book for home schooling. Drawings that fill the pages invite readers into this tale about a family enjoying an outing in nature. The bold colors, sharp detail, and active illustrations are captivating. Readers of all ages may linger to discuss what they see, particularly if an adult and a child are reading the book together.
Readers will want to add their own impressions to the story. Laya Steinberg encourages young readers to be observant and to appreciate other creatures? views. All Around Me I See is one of numerous books from Dawn Publications promoting nature awareness. The vibrant front cover expresses beauty and action that will appeal to customers of all ages. The book is recommended for children ages 3 to 8. However, both adults and children will enjoy it. Place it face front, and watch people pick it up!
— New Age Retailer – Jean E. Hangsgen (July 2005)
The author presents a simple story of a family who goes on an overnight camping trip. The text flows as the reader shares the child’s experience from the moment she leavers her home and travels along the shore to the camping site in the forest. As the child travels in the family car, each part of nature she encounters is shared with the reader, viewed through the child’s eyes. The text sets the mood for this journey by being short and poetic. Each part of nature is described in this manner. The words match the pictures, which are beautifully reflective of nature, with vibrant colors and realistically portraying the animals and child’s family. The picture of the family driving shows the child with her hair blowing in the wind by the open window. The child eventually falls asleep in her mother’s arms whereby the author creates a dream sequence. This is beautifully presented as the child flies through the forest and space in awe of the beauty. This is a beautifully written book that is a wonderful introduction to nature for young children. The pictures alone could be used as a teaching tool to learn about animals’ habitats and the wonders of nature. Recommended.
— Library Media Connection (January 2006)
The exuberant joy of a child’s first nature discoveries – a frog, a deer, a fish, a beetle – are celebrated in this “realistic fantasy” of nature from a child’s point of view.
With eyes wide open to the mysteries of nature, a child on a hike with her family discovers wonderful creatures and relates to them with simple analogies to her human experience. A leaf is a boat for a beetle; the grass is a bed for a deer; a hollow is a hideout for a squirrel; and a blossom is a bowl for dew … Tired from her long walk, she sleeps – and in her dream, she frolics with a deer and soars among flowers and treetops to view nature close-up.
Illustrator Cris Arbo truly captivates with her colorful artwork, and evokes the emotions of childhood delight. Her techniques of fantasy realism portray the child’s eye view with magic and vitality.
— County Kids (February 2006)
Beyond the beautiful artwork and clever thoughts relating nature in this book, early childhood educators, workshop facilitators, and caregivers can use this book as a resource. Wrapped within the text are 20 poetic metaphors relating nature as seen through the eyes of a 3- to 5-year-old-child. Steinberg uses imaginative pairings of words to create images, or “mind pictures,” for her readers. While relatable and interesting for a student, I have most effectively used this book as a tool working with educators at early childhood professional development trainings. By breaking the quotes in half, and then asking participants to find the “match” that completes the thought, we bring the educator into the mind-frame of their pre-K audience. This exercise works extremely well with Growing Up WILD and Project Learning Tree Early Childhood trainings.
— Environmental Education Assoc. of Illinois – Sarah Livesay (July 2012)
We read our bedtime story by booklight. All Around Me I See by Laya Steinberg is a nature awareness story about a family who goes on a camping trip. The child describes all that she sees, from the moment she leaves her home and on into her dreams. The illustrations by Cris Arbo are beautifully detailed. It’s the perfect picture book to take camping with little ones. The thoughtful and nature loving folks at Dawn Publications provide a free discussion and activity guide to go along with the book.
— Mother Rising Blog (May 18, 2010)
Wonderful creatures of nature come alive through the curious eyes of a young girl in All Around Me, I See, a picture books by Laya Steinberg. This book, written for ages 3 to 8 combines the best of fiction and nonfiction, and shows the joy of discovering the beauty of nature.
— The Westfield Leader – Marylou Morano (April 22, 2005)
Looking for a Thanksgiving read-aloud? Surprise your family with this one—and keep sharing it throughout the year. Tots will adore the colorful board-book format, while older kids and adults will appreciate the poetic message about the interconnectedness of all things. The opening lines, “The rain is a drink for the Earth./A puddle is a bath for a bird,” find visual expression in vivid illustrations of a little girl preparing for a hike with her parents. Like the splashing bird in the picture, she delights in the puddle and other natural things she spots: the beetle’s leaf boat, the turtle’s log bridge and the fawn’s grass bed. Surrounded by her own loving family, she notices that, “[a] forest is a family for a tree” and falls asleep at the campsite to dream of the wonders large (the sun) and small (a dew-filled blossom) that fill our amazing world.
— Washington Parent – Mary Quattlebaum (November 2010)
Save this picture book for a read aloud treat on a quiet summer night, one of the ones where you can see fireflies and hear crickets. Almost a lullaby, it’s a softly rolling, gently rhyming homage to the wonders of nature as seen through a child’s eyes. Come along for the ride as the girl in the story goes for a hike with her family, sets up camp, and falls asleep to dream of flying through the skies. She notices everything around her with awe: “A rock is an island for a frog . . . a turtle makes a bridge from a log . . . the sky is a place to be free . . . the Earth is a home for me.” The pictures are as lush as the rhymes are; readers and listeners will easily be lulled into the proper mood.
— Parents Express – Bobbie Combs (June 2005)
Immersed in a child’s eye view of the world, the reader feels the child’s joy in nature – and then, dream borne, goes forth and becomes part of the animal world she sees. This flight of fancy sings with a quiet, true exuberance. All Around Me I See is an opportunity to allow children to love the earth first – just what they need to do, before we ask them to save it.
— Prof. David Sobel, Antioch New England – Co-Director of the Center for Place-based Education
Dawn Publications specializes in books for children that inspire a deeper understanding and appreciation for all life on earth. All Around Me, I See is a “realistic fantasy” about nature. A child on a hike with her family discovers that in our world everything has a purpose. The sun provides warmth. The rain provides plants and animals with water. The moon provides us light in the darkness. The meadow provides a feast for insects and animals of all kinds. As she falls asleep in the calm of the meadow, her dreams take her to many more discoveries in a dreamy and magical adventure. Recommended for ages 4-8.
— Southern Maryland Parent Line (January 2006)
This nature board book connects everything around us to nature in child-friendly terms. “A stream is a path to the ocean. A rock is an island for a frog.” Following a family’s backpacking trip in the woods from morning prep until night sleep, All Around Me I See focuses on a little girl who discovers plants and animals on the trail. In the river she spots a trout jumping. In the meadow she sees a bee buzzing in flowers. Gradually the forest comes to life at every level of the ecosystem and the books ends on sweet dreams under the stars. A great primer to a camping trip.
— Golden Gate Mothers Group Newsletter (April 2010)
The given ‘summary’ of this book states: “Illustrations and simple, rhyming text detail what a young girl observes during her first camping trip – even while she is dreaming.” The summary is true, however this book captures much more of the imagination and wonders of nature. “This planet, home to so many beings, is magical when seen through the eyes of wonder.” I actually smiled as I went with the young girl on her first camping trip.
— Missouri State Univ. Book Review Board (December 2006)
All Around Me I See is another good nature book for young children as it takes them on an adventure and shows them many wondrous things in nature including birds, the ocean, a whale, a river, salmon, a frog, a beetle, a turtle, a deer, a forest, a seed, a bee, a squirrel, a flower, an owl, the sun, the sky, the moon and the Earth. Beautiful illustrations complement the simple text providing the young reader with a glimpse of the natural beauty of the planet.
— Glenn Parrett – Metroland North Blog (March 2009)
While finding meaning in things occurring in nature, this book captures the eye, mind, and imagination–and you feel that exuberant joy of childhood when all things are possible and the best is yet to come.
— Barbara Geiger, President, Learning Explorations, Dayton, Ohio
One of the tasks, pleasures, privileges, of teaching in the church school is to help children experience; see and hear and sense the beauty and wonder of nature, God’s creation.
All Around Me, I See is to see from a child’s point of view, fresh and new. The child discovers and sees with her imagination, on a trip with her family into nature:
A river is a journey for salmon,
A rock is an island for a frog.
A leaf is a boat for a beetle,
A turtle makes a bridge from a log.
Then tired from hiking, she sleeps and dreams of frolicking with a deer, flying with a seed into the sky, the place to be free, and ends: “This Earth is a place for me.”
The poet William Wordsworth wrote, “Come forth into the light of things. Let Nature be your teacher.”
With the pictures of my favorite illustrator and the poetry of All Around Me, I See, this is truly a book that belongs in the hands of those who love and care for God’s creation.
— Church Educator (June 2005)