A creative-nonfiction look at animal migration. Each spread focuses on one animal, describing both its journey and the reason behind it – the change of season, to give birth or to search for food and water. An additional paragraph rounds out the information presented in the rhyming verses . . . The animals include a good mix of fauna from land, sea and air, and many will be familiar to readers. A final spread combines the migration routes of all the animals on a map focused on North America. DiRubbio’s realistic artwork places each animal in its own environment, complete with the surrounding colors and flora. While highlighting the individual animal “speaking” in the verses, she also depicts whether the animal is usually a part of a herd or solitary. Extensive backmatter features more facts about migration, a paragraph of further information about each animal, some activity ideas from the author including another example of creative-nonfiction writing and a list of resources for learning more about the animals presented. A solid introductory look at animal migration in a form that the youngest readers will appreciate.
— Kirkus Reviews (April 2010)
Teachers especially will welcome this poetic look at animal migration patterns. Ten critters, ranging from Canada geese to caribou and loggerhead turtles, celebrate their “going home” with a rhyme, a small paragraph of information, and a colorful, realistic illustration spreading across facing pages. A large map helps readers follow migratory patterns, and a closing section contains a look at the “mystery” of migration, further data on the creatures in focus, and a handy-dandy passel of suggestions, such as to “Write Your Own Story” about an animal not included in this book. Similar in scope to Berkes’s Over in the Arctic (2008) and Over in the Jungle (2007, both Dawn), the book is a pleasant way to tie creative writing and natural history in a simple package.
— School Library Journal (May 2010)
A winning combination of verse, factual language, and beautiful illustrations that describe the mysterious migration patterns of animals from loggerhead turtles to monarch butterflies to ruby-throated hummingbird to caribou. Resources at the end of the book include websites to learn more about the featured animals, and several lesson and activity ideas for educators.
— ForeWord Reviews – Teresa Scollon – (March/April 2010)
This introduction to animals’ migratory habits functions almost more as a comprehensive lesson plan than as a straightforward picture book. Poems written from the point of view of migrating animals themselves, accompanied by brief facts, are followed by extensive back matter including additional information about each of the animals, a map showing migratory paths, suggested books and Web sites, information about migration itself, and extended activities. Although much of the back matter will be of interest primarily to educators, the poetry and illustrations are child-friendly and should pique and hold young zoologists’ interest. The animals featured are ones that children know: turtles, monarch butterflies, and whales, among others. The poems feature accessible vocabulary and carry the theme “Going home, going home” throughout. Softly colored double-page spreads use a variety of perspectives to show the animals both close-up and in the context of their environments. Best for curricular use, in a school, classroom, or homeschool library.
— Booklist Online – Diane Foote – (February 17, 2010)
An engaging and informative look into animal migration, this book traces the migration habits of 10 different animals. each page tells a different animal’s migration patterns. The illustrations enhance the text with softly colored two-age spreads. This book is perfect for a read-aloud to introduced the topic of migration. The rhyming verse flows smoothly, enhanced by the informational text. The inclusion of the informational text allows for natural pauses to incorporate discussion as the book is being read. The end of the book includes further information about each animal including details on why and where they migrate. The mystery of how animals migrate can be explored through the activities included at the end of the book. Science teachers will love how this book introduces migration to young students.
— Library Media Connection – Lynn Christiansen (October 2010)
Poetry on each double-page spread of graphic art makes this beautiful book one you will want to share aloud. A second level of text provides background for the reader, making this an ideal book to read again and again. It was recognized as an NSTA/CBC Outstanding Science Trade Book for 2011.
The migrations of sea turtles, monarchs, manatees, and other animals are described in poetry and prose. Students who listen carefully and observe the photos will be challenged to determine what’s similar and different among the many migrating animals, from geese to gray whales. Why do they travel so far? There are clues in the poetry and some details in the supporting text. A great double-page spread map shows the route each animal follows. Perhaps the most valuable part of the book is the appendix, with a short section on the mystery of migration, a list of websites, and extra details about each species (written at an adult level).
National Geographic produced a theme issue of the magazine, a television special, and individual leveled paperbacks on this topic. Tips for extension assignments, which are included, are diverse and valuable. Students who use this book will gain a rich understanding of migration as an adaptive behavior, and they will share the wonder that shows in each poetic page.
— NSTA Recommends – Juliana Texley (December 2010)
What pushes an animal to travel thousands of miles to places it has never seen or to reproduce in the same spot as its ancestors did? The mysteries of the animal world are many and scientists still don’t hold all the answers. Exploring these topics with children can be exciting and a little daunting. I recently had the pleasure of reading Going Home to my kids and the timing couldn’t have been better. With fall changing toward winter here in Minnesota we have watched the bird activity increase as the flocks head southward toward warmer climes. This book provided a great jumping off point to migration in general.
Going Home highlights the migratory habits and patterns of ten different animals from Monarch butterflies to Manatees, you will be enthralled to learn about the unique things each species undergoes in the quest for reproduction and the continuation of the species. The story is told in a repeated poetic stanza, which offers a lovely continuity broken up by factual information about each species. The illustrations are beautiful and add to the information presented. Our favorite part of the book was the map that illustrated the distance that each animal travels on in journey. It really brought home how amazing this phenomenon is.
This book would be a lovely read aloud to a class talking about animals in general or about the fascinating migration patterns of the animal world. It is equally well received at home with a cuddle on the couch. The back of the book offers further information about migration as well as a book list, related websites and two movie suggestions to continue the conversation. I think that it would be a wonderful lesson paired with participation in the Great Backyard Bird Count (February, 2011 http://www.birdsource.org/gbbc/) or as part of a butterfly raising/release project in a classroom. Going Home would be a great addition to any school or home library.
–Clearing Magazine – Emily Baker-LaRouf (February 2011)
Going Home tells, in rhyme, the amazing migratory journeys of ten different North American animal species, spoken from the animals’ own voices. Each two-page spread features an eight-line verse from the animal, vivid and realistic watercolor and pencil illustrations, and brief scientific information about each species’ migratory habits. The final pages of the book are filled with additional materials, including a map of all ten animals’ migration routes, further detailed information on each species, teaching tips and extension activities from the author as well as a list of books and websites that will direct children who want to learn more.
–Green Teacher (Summer 2011)
Going Home, The Mystery of Animal Migration is a book of clear and clever poetry that tells all about different animals’ migration habits, patterns, and history. Each animal described is illustrated in a two page painting, a memorable descriptive verse, and additional information about the animal is presented in a paragraph at the bottom of the page. At the end of the book is a color coded list of the animals and their migration routes shown on a map of the world to further explain the amazing migratory patterns of the ten animals included. Additional books, websites, and movies are listed along with further information about teach animal species, and further tips from the author give good activity suggestions for further learning about animal migration. Designed to appeal to the elementary student, Going Home is a valuable resource for students, parents and teachers interested in learning more about animal migration.
— Midwest Book Review – (March 2010)
Explore the migration of 10 animals ranging from monarch butterflies to California gray whales in this accessible, slim book. Each animal’s migration story is accompanied by a short rhyming poem, two or three sentences about where and why the animal migrates, and full-color illustrations showing the animals on their migratory journey. The Arctic tern, Canada goose, caribou, emperor penguin, loggerhead turtle, manatee, Pacific salmon, and ruby-throated hummingbird present an excellent range of migration patterns. The poems and the explanations is well balanced with each other and would be accessible to early elementary school readers. The graphics are clearly presented and interesting . . . Pages at the back contain additional information about the animals’ migrations and distributions, as well as references and creative teaching suggestions from the author.
— Science Books & Films – Judy Diamond (June 2010)
Going Home tells, in rhyme, the amazing migratory journeys of ten different North American animal species, spoken from the animals’ own voices. Each two-page spread features an eight line verse from the animal, vivid and realistic watercolor and pencil illustrations, and brief scientific information about each species’ migratory habits. The final pages of the book are filled with additional materials, including a map of all ten animals’ migration routes, further detailed information on each species, teaching tips and extension activities from the author as well as a list of books and websites that will direct children who want to learn more.
— Green Teacher (Summer 2011)
Dawn Publications, one of the nation’s premier publishers of children’s ecology books, is located in nearby Nevada City. Dawn’s mission is to inspire in children a deeper understanding and appreciation for all life on Earth. Since 1979 they’ve succeeded by publishing books of unusual beauty that help children and their parents understand nature, and how to honor and protect it. If these are values you’d like to share with your children, take a look at some of Dawn’s new books.
. . . Follow the amazing migration of ten creatures as they make their way around the world looking for food, warmth, a mate, or a familiar beach. “Going home, going home, dancing in the sky. Waking from our winter sleep, it’s time for us to fly.” See the magnificent monarch butterflies covering a tree and then taking off into the sun when they awake. There’s the manatee, Canada gees, caribou, and whales. Each double-page spread features an eight-line verse and information on the animal. The end material offers further reading, websites, and more. Perhaps most interesting is the world map that traces the land and sea migration of the animals. This book, like many of Dawn’s books, is perfect for reading at home or school.
— California Kids! Family Fun Guide – Connie Goldsmith (June 2011)
Going home, going home, / We feel the urge to go. / It’s time for us to travel on, / It’s something we just know. / Many of us look for food, / Others find a mate. / And when the weather starts to change, / There is no time to wait.
This book offers rhymes, migration routes, and educational information on Loggerhead turtles, Monarch butterflies, manatees, Ruby-throated hummingbirds, Pacific salmon, Canadian geese, California gray whales, caribou, Arctic terns, and Emperor penguins. The beautiful illustrations show the animals in their native habitats. “We chose this book because of its wealth of information on a difficult and mysterious subject,” says Izaak Walton League Environmental Education Committee chair Marsha Johnson. “Anyone of any age can learn about a new subject by reading a children’s book on it.
— Outdoor America (Summer 2010)
This award-winning book follows animals by land, by sea and by air. We follow the Loggerhead turtle from the ocean to the beach where she was born to hatch her eggs. Herds of caribou travel two thousand miles from winters spent in evergreen forests to summers spent northward on the Arctic tundra. As winter looms, Monarch butterflies travel south. They rest sleepily in the same trees their ancestors occupied the year before. Following these animals and many more, this book educates readers about these seasonal navigators. We admire their intelligence and their determination. How do they do it? They don’t have maps. How do they find their way? That is the mystery of animal migrations that the reader is left to ponder.
Lovely poetry paired with sidebars of interesting facts and beautiful illustrations tell the story. Back matter contains even more facts and several activities that could be done at home or at school to extend the book.
— Wild About Nature – JKim Hutmacher (August 29, 2010)
This creative nonfiction book explains the migration patterns of ten animals. The animals, primarily North American, include mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and insects. Every two-page spread includes a poem narrated in first person by the featured animal, followed by a prose paragraph naming the animal and giving more migration facts. Still more information is provided by the illustrations, which show each animal’s habitat. Each part of this book works well. The simple verses, each beginning with the refrain “Going home, going home,” retain their rhythm and rhyme scheme without becoming forced or sing-songy. The prose paragraphs do not follow any particular formula but rather share whatever is most noteworthy about each animal’s migration, whether it be the reason, the route, or survival strategies during the voyage. Each illustration features one animal in almost photographic detail, while the background and surrounding animals are portrayed in soft focus. The illustrator’s colorful but slightly muted palette adds to the pictures’ gentle tone. The final illustration shows a color-coded map of all ten species’ migratory patterns. An appendix offers still more detailed information about these animals, as well as a list of websites for further research. For teachers, the author suggests activities suitable for a first through third grade classroom. With its flexible text—a younger audience could be read just the poems, while the oldest readers could pursue the additional information in the appendix—this book is appropriate for ages four through nine; the inviting and informative pictures will also appeal to this wide range. Overall, this is a good nonfiction choice for home or school.
— Children’s Literature – Deborah Steinig (August 2010)
Going Home, The Mystery of Animal Migration by Marianne Berkes from Dawn Publications is a creative non-fiction picture book for ages 4-10 that uses verse to take students along on the migratory journey of ten animals including manatees, emperor penguins and the ruby-throated hummingbird. In addition to poetry and pictures, the book offers information about each animal such as lifestyle and habitat. For the teacher there are several classroom activities and a downloadable map for students to plot migrations. Go to dawnpub.com and click on Teaching Tools for the map and for resources for other Dawn books. There are outdoor education resources (with correlations for Project Learning Tree), downloadable activities for 19 titles and teacher’s guides for 6 titles.
— Arkansas Science Teacher’s Assn. Newsletter (March 2010)
Animal lovers will delight in Going Home: The Mystery of Animal Migration, written by Marianne Berkes. The author features 10 very different animals, like penguins and manatees, artic terns and caribou and writes rhyming verses about their migration patterns. Then the migration routes are beautifully mapped out. At the back of the book there’s a paragraph with more migration details about each animal. I, for one, am thrilled to learn new fascinating facts. For example, did you know that a loggerhead turtle migrates for some 20 years and travel around 8,000 miles in its lifetime?
Award-winning illustrator and environmentalist, Jennifer DiRubbio provides some marvelous pictures of the creatures in their natural habitats to round out this great book. I love the fact that Going Home teaches children about geography as well as animals. This book will encourage some great conversation with your children and generate many questions about our wide, wonderful world.
— L.A. Parent Magazine – Debbie Glade (May 2010)
What compels animals to migrate? This read-aloud picture book introduces the topic to young learners, and includes features that allow the book to be used on a number of levels. Including both fictional and non-fiction aspects, it is dubbed “creative non-fiction.”
Each two-page spread features a different migrating animal with a poem in the animal’s own voice, identifying the form of the migration. “Going home, going home/ Moving on our way. /Heading, for some icy seas /From a nice warm bay.” Then, a caption with the animal’s name in bold, gives additional facts. The illustrations enhance the text with realistic pictures of the animals in their habitats.
The book concludes with a wealth of helpful information. A map showing each animal’s route with differently colored arrows, a section on the “mystery” aspect telling what we don’t know and a list of books, websites and DVDs for further research are presented. Additional information on each animal and numerous ideas for extended activities make this a natural choice for teachers who want to enhance the curriculum.
Both author and illustrator have won numerous awards.
— New Jersey Youth Services Book Evaluation (Feb. 25, 2010)
This book is about animals and where they hibernate for the winter. The tiny hummingbird at your feeder may have flown non-stop over the Gulf of Mexico. The monarch butterfly in your yard may spend the winter in a particular tree in Mexico, and its great-great-great-grandchild will return in an astounding multi-generational journey. The Canada goose you saw in the park spent the summer in the Arctic raising her chicks. Sea turtles return to the same beach where they hatched. Fully-grown salmon battle their way up small streams to their place of birth. Penguins trek for miles over ice. Arctic terns fly 10,000 miles from Arctic to the Antarctic and back. Animals that migrate offer some of the most captivating stories of nature.
Marianne Berkes captures mystery as well as science in a book for children. Illustrator, Jennifer DiRubbio, captures the determination of these remarkable animals as well as the vastness of landscape they traverse.
— The Nashville News – Mary Barrett (June 30, 2010)
Marianne Berkes’ creative nonfiction book, Going Home: The Mystery of Animal Migration, mixes poetry and facts to bring the reader a sense and understanding of the migration urges and routes of ten different animals. The poems are told from the animals’ viewpoints yet have a lyrical touch of wanderlust and restlessness, while sharing factual information. Together with the factual side notes, it is nicely reader friendly. The poem ends with the question, “How?” for children to wonder about and consider doing more research to find the answers. Color illustrations by Jennifer DiRubbio work well with the poem to show each animal and allow readers to understand what challenges they faced. A migration map with the final stanza of the poem has a color-coded key as well as colored arrows to show the routes that each animal followed in its travels. More information about migration and the animals themselves are at the back of the book along with a bibliography of useful books, websites, and movies, which can help the reader to learn more. Author Marion Berkes draws on her background as a teacher, children’s theater director, and children’s librarian to provide a good collection of activities in a Tips from the Author section for teachers, parents, librarians, and children themselves. It’s a fine, library-bound book for animal studies and general enjoyment which is why it has earned a rating of 4.
— Lane County ESD Reviews (Fall 2010)
“Going home, going home,/We feel the urge to go./It’s time for us to travel on,/It’s something we just know./ Many of us look for food,/Others find a mate./And when the weather starts to change,/There is no time to wait.” Migration by sea, air, and land of Loggerhead turtles, Monarch butterflies, Manatees, California gray whales, Ruby-throated hummingbirds, Pacific salmon, Caribou, Artic tern, Canadian geese, and Emperor penguins is presented through poems written from each animal’s perspective. Brief facts about each animal explain the how and why of their migration. Information at the back includes a color-coded list and migration routes, as well as suggested readings, web sites, and information on each animal. This wonderful introduction into the mysterious world of animal migration offers additional activities for classroom and home.
— The Children’s Hour (tchliteracy.com) (July 2010)
“By land, sea, and air, many animals migrate ‘home’ – sometimes over very long distances. They have no maps.” Ever wonder why, or how they find their way?
Going Home: The Mystery of Animal Migration (Dawn Publications, $8.95), poetically tells the fascinating story of animal migrations: among them, whales that regularly migrant 5,000 to 14,000 miles to find food or raise their young; turtles who roam the oceans and return years later to lay their eggs on the very beaches where they were born; the Humming Bird which flies non-stop across the gulf of Mexico; the Arctic Tern that seasonally flies over the oceans between the North and South poles, covering some 20,000 miles.
Going Home presents absorbing facts in a way that should be a delight for teachers to share with their young students. Author Marianne Berkes of Hobe Sound, formerly a teacher, children’s theater director and children’s librarian, now writes full time and presents frequently at conferences. Her previous seven children’s books have won awards including: Learning Magazine Teachers Choice, National Parenting Publications Gold Award, Moonbeam Children’s Book Award and the iParenting Media Award.
Handsomely illustrated by Jennifer DiRubbio, who has illustrated five other award-winning books, Going Home is a delight to view and well as to read, a win-win adventure for grades K to 4.
— The Stuart News – Marilyn Bauer (May 23, 2010)
How would you feel if you had to travel from New York to California and back – every year – without the aid of cars, trains, or airplanes? Yet some animals do just that sort of thing. They migrate, sometimes up to thousands of miles, by water, air, or land, for various reasons: to raise their young, to stay warm, or to find food. The monarch butterflies which fly from the north to California or Mexico, the California gray whales which swim from the waters off California and Mexico to the Bering Sea, and the caribou or reindeer of the tundra which travel over 1,000 miles using the same routes every year, are just three of the ten animals whose migrations are described poetically in Going Home: The Mystery of Animal Migration, which is another “Sharing Nature With Children Book” from Dawn Publications.
Author Marianne Berkes, whose Over in the Ocean: In a Coral Reef and Over in the Jungle: A Rainforest Rhyme, also from Dawn Publications, I have reviewed previously, uses what she calls “creative non-fiction,” enhanced with the lovely, colorful illustrations by Jennifer DiRubbio, to introduce children to the wonders of animal migration. The text is certainly entertaining, but the educational benefit is augmented by six pages in the back with further information about the mystery of migration; how to learn more about the animals with books, websites, and movies; additional facts about the migrating animals; and tips from the author which include checking the Dawn Publications website to find “Educator Tools” for Going Home. In addition to learning about the animals, there is some geography here too, with a map showing the different animals’ migration routes. This is a fascinating book that parents and teachers will find very useful.
— Homeschoolblogger.com- (February 17, 2010)
How animals find their way to a warmer climate in winter and back home again in summer is indeed a mystery.
Manatees migrate to warmer waters, following the same routes their parents and grandparents swam. Salmon live in the salty ocean until they are adults but then find the same river of their birth in which to lay their eggs. The arctic tern travels 20,000 miles every year. Tiny ruby-throated hummingbirds make a breathtaking flight across the Gulf of Mexico without a stop.
This captivatingly informative text is well supported with Jennifer DiRubbio’s sensitive, full-page paintings of these traveling wonders of nature.
— Topeka Capital-Journal – (February 14, 2010)
I’ve always been fascinated by “migration”. What are the subtle signals that trigger it? By air, land, and sea, migrating animals are “going home.” Salmon, turtles, whales and manatees travel by sea. Hummingbirds, butterflies and geese fly with determination. And caribou thunder across vast plains. Both illustrations and text capture a sense of movement and purpose – plus a sense of mystery and amazement.
— Boomeranger World (Vaboomer.com) – Virginia Cornue, Phd. – (October 2009)
Going Home is about what different kinds of animals do to survive. I like that it has enough types of animals to make it interesting but not too many to make it boring. The illustrations are nice because it shows the animal it talks about on that page doing what it is talking about. The background also looks very nice. I like the different shades of all of the colors. My favorite part was the part about the loggerhead turtle because I like turtles. I also liked the illustration on that page. I also think it is interesting how loggerhead turtles lay eggs and the baby turtles swim out into the ocean. I would recommend this book to any age because I think that many people would have a fun time reading it and would all like learning about what different types of animals do to survive.
— Coop. Services for Children’s Literature (CSCL)
P.N., Kenwood School – Third Grade (May 2010)
Grayce: “I loved it! I like how the colors lead the animals and show us their migration routes. I learned that migration is important to animals. I learned the little birds (arctic terns) travel all around the world. The pictures were pretty and I like the whale drawings best. I didn’t know the whale traveled so far. The bird one convinced me it was so far and they traveled around the world. Will you buy me more animal books, Mom?”
Grayce was engaged throughout the entire book and made many comments like, “I love manatees,” and “That’s a long way (when looking at the hummingbird’s migration).” This book is beautifully illustrated and the rhyming, sing-songy way the author tells the story of migration (each page starts “going home, going home”) makes it an easy read. As Grayce described, the last page depicts color-coded routes of all the animals in the book, which we traced with our hands and which led to further discussion. Going Home: The Mystery of Animal Migration by Marianne Berkes is simply outstanding!
— Kid’s Reader Views – Grayce Richardson (almost age 6) (March 2010)
The wonders of animal migration will captivate young readers as they read about tiny hummingbirds that fly across the Gulf of Mexico, sea turtles that return to a special beach after years at sea, and other amazing feats. Children will be caught up in the mysteries of these animal navigators, presented clearly and accurately.
— Professor James L. Gould, Princeton University, and Dr. Carol Grant Gould
Co-authors of The Animal Mind and other animal behavior books (October 2009)
We all see animals for a season or two, perhaps in our own backyard, and then they’re gone. We don’t think of where they came from or where they go. This book, with its magical poetry, beautiful illustrations, and enlightening information will give children a new appreciation of these animals and their amazing journeys.
— Don Salvatore, Science Educator at the Museum of Science, Boston, and author, Backyard Biology Web Site (October)
We’re completely smitten with this book about the wonders of animal migration. The lyrical text will captivate the wee ones and the factual blurbs will fascinate “big kids”. I especially love the map on the last page which gives one a sense of just how far some animals travel.
— Mother Rising Blog (motherrising.blogspot.com) (March 17, 2010)