Did your mother ever tell you, when you came into the house all dirty, that you looked as if you had crawled out from under a rock? What does live under a rock anyway? The fact is that underneath a rock in your backyard there is a habitat for all kinds of interesting creatures, such as earthworms, ants, spiders, beetles, crickets, millipedes, and slugs, each of which plays a very important part in nature’s cycle of life. Be honest – have you never peeked under a rock to see what was there? Author Anthony D. Fredericks is a nature explorer from way back and a former classroom teacher who has written over twenty children’s books, including several in a series on animal communities for Dawn Publicatons.
The rhythmic text, reminiscent of “The old lady who swallowed the fly” or “The house that Jack built,” with just enough repetition to make it fun reading for children, along with Jennifer DiRubbio’s engaging illustrations from a close-up perspective, will send kids outdoors to start looking under rocks and exploring nature. In addition, the back of the book contains two pages of “Field Notes” with further information and a fantastic fact about each of the species mentioned in the story. There is also page of “How to Learn More” with resources for digging deeper into ecology. Under One Rock has won several awards, including the Izaac Walton League Book of the Year. Any child who enjoys studying about nature will really like this book.
— Stories for Children Magazine – Wayne S. Walker (April 2009)
Here is a beautifully crafted book to introduce our youngest students to habitats. The illustrations – not photographs – vividly detail the life that goes on under a rock. The text is written as a rhyming cumulative story, with a phrase or two to describe each creature uncovered. “The rough-gray rock was discovered by chance/By a brown-skinned boy in ragged pants.” This attractive portion of the book will entice children; the “Field Notes” in the back provide some basic facts about the insects found in the story. Each bug also has a fantastic fact (for example, some species of slugs have more than 20,000 teeth). A “How to Learn More” section lists other child-appropriate resources to encourage further study. It also lists addresses and web sites of organizations working to preserve animal habitats. Recommended.
— Library Talk (May/June 2002)
“Dear Neighbors, There are many places to live. You may live in a large city. Or, you may live in a small town. You might live on a busy street or a quiet road. Wherever you live, you are part of a community.”
So begins a letter from “Your eight-eyed friend, Spider” in this book that is part of a series on habitats (this one focuses on what lives under rocks). The illustrations are big and bold, and the text is done in a rhyming cumulative verse form.
What child has not turned over a rock and seen a variety of critters scoot away? A whole community of creatures lives under rocks, the book explains – worms and ants, spiders and slugs, crickets and beetles. Creatures with no legs and creatures with many legs. Rocks are everywhere, so a whole new habitat lies just under your feet ready to explore. After reading this book, what child could resist turning over nearby rocks to see what is living there?
— Outdoor America (Fall 2008)
In a field on a summer day, a young boy lifts a large gray rock and discovers a rich community of life underneath. Fantastically detailed and realistic illustrations enrich the delightful cumulative verse of this book, providing young readers with factual information on a surprisingly rich habitat that is right under our feet. Included as an appendix is a “Field Notes” page of factual information on the seven organisms mentioned in the story.
— Green Teacher (Summer 2006)
This story starts with just one rock and as it unfolds, it describes all the creatures that live beneath the rocks surface. Children are given the opportunity to see a unique and different habitat through the community beneath the rock. The colorful and clear illustrations enhance the excitement level as readers discover the wonders nature holds. A list of informative facts about each creature mentioned in the book is included at the end, encouraging children to discover even more about these fascinating creatures. This high-quality book will teach children to look at everyday objects in a different way, to appreciate nature, and to understand how bugs live.
— Oneota Journal – Decorah Public Library (Fall 2008)
Colorful illustrations and playful verse make this a great book for beginning readers interested in ecology. The main story is fast-paced and engaging, while the “Field Notes” section provides great additional information and fascinating facts about the creatures discussed in the text.
A great invitation to go exploring this summer: if you do move a rock, do it gently because you may have uncovered the homes of many creatures.
— Skipping Stones Magazine (May-August 2002)
Anthony Fredericks combines scientific fact and poetry to create a book that teaches and entertains young children about the fascinating creatures that can be found living under rocks.
Although the average child may not want to touch a slimy earthworm or a crawly spider, many are curious about them and enjoy exploring their habitats. Under One Rock: Bugs, Slugs & Other Ughs brings these habitats to life and could be considered one of the most perfect children’s books. Poetry, detailed illustrations, and scientific fact come together in this instant classic. This book is written for children ages four to ten, but there is a good chance adults will learn a thing or two while reading it to their favorite youngsters. A section in the back of the book gives further information as well as some little-known “Fantastic-Facts” about each creature depicted in the story. Teachers or parents wanting to work a unit study with their children will find a wealth of resource ideas in the Field Notes guide at the end of the story. This book brings out the nature-lover in young and old alike. After reading this book, be prepared to make lots of stops on your next outing with your child to explore the environment under rocks. There is a whole, big, undiscovered world waiting to be found!
— The Kaboose Network (www.kidsdomain.com) – Candice Cooper(October 2004)
(three stars – highest rating)
This book is excellent for all the little boys in your life. Girls who can handle all of the “icky” stuff will love it too. Written by Anthony Fredericks and Illustrated by Jennifer DeRubbio, Dawn Publications has brought an excellent publication to the table with this treasure.
Full of colorful and descriptive artwork, this book is for ages 4-10 and is great as an additive to your science classes or a great stand alone treasure to read and discover.
It covers most of the commonly known insects and earth creatures, such as slugs, bugs, worms, spiders, you name it … they come to life in this great book.
The book is large size, 36 pages in length and contains field notes, ways to further discover the creatures found within it and covers the basic habitats and life activities for this little critters.
Every young child will enjoy the discoveries that are within. It is both a fun story and well able to teach as it walks them through the story.
Check this one out for your child today. Both they and you will enjoy it.
— Education Clearinghouse – www.educationclearinghouse.org (December 2002)
As usual, Tony Frederick hits one out of the park with his newest children’s book, Under One Rock. Whether we’re looking for a solid language arts experience, an exciting view of the denizens around a rock, or just a good read for our kids, this book fits the bill. Readers will be seduced by the rick language and imagery of this cumulative tale. I was.
— Patricia Broderick, Editorial Director – Teaching K-8 Magazine
What’s under a rock on a warm summers day? A little boy decides to find out and discovers a whole community of amazing creatures from eight-eyed spiders to “a sole millipede with a sensitive feel/Who slips through the dirt in search of a meal.” Borrowing the poetic form of the nursery rhyme, “The House that Jack Built,” the author gives a defining characteristic of each of eight creatures and tells how it relates to the next. Engaging illustrations add considerable charm to the text. Best of all is a section at the end called “Field Notes” where children will find brief but intelligent facts about the creatures featured in the poem. Should they want to follow up on Australia’s nine-foot earthworms or South America’s plate-sized, bird-catching spiders, there is even a list of references.
— Michael Chabin – Children’s Literature (2003)
No child will be able to resist looking under a rock after reading Frederick’s rhythmic, engaging story. The cumulative verse invites listeners to join in, and the Field Notes and Fantastic Facts inspires endless exploration. With its rich, earthy illustrations, Under One Rock provides the perfect balance of fact, fiction, and fun.
— Suzanne I. Barchers, Ed.D., Managing Editor -Weekly Reader
Kids who love bugs will pluck this creepy-crawly tale from library shelves. The story follows a young boy curious about the critters living under a giant rock in a grassy field. There he finds squiggly earthworms, ants, an eight-eyed spider, shiny black beetles, slimy slugs and singing field crickets. Big and bold 3-D illustrations seem to jump from the pages right into the reader’s lap. . . . Children ages 5 to 8 will be equally intrigued and grossed out by this dip into the underground world of bugs, slugs and other ughs. An excellent two-page “Field Notes” section presents basic scientific info on each creature. Attractively presented with art, the notes are accurate, interesting and well-suited for kids.
— Today’s Librarian (January 2002)
Children will be entranced by the repetitive sounds of author Frederick’s rhyming narrative as they absorb some basic facts of nature. The information is clearly presented and easily assimilated, though purists will object to his near rhyme (aloud/ground) and a grammatical error (lay instead of lie). Two pages of field notes on the mentioned creatures, as well as addresses for environmental organizations and a list of other books for children make this a valuable resource for teachers and parents. Brilliant illustrations by Jennifer DiRubbio add to the readability of this early science title for young children.
— Hutton Book-Review Services – Linda Hutton (Nov. 2001)
I am a technical services employee at the Emma Clark Memorial Library in Setauket, New York. We received a catalogue from Dawn Publications and I was drawn to your books immediately. I have purchased and today received Under One Rock and In One Tidepool. I bought them to hold onto when I have grandchildren. The illustrations are breathtaking and I love the cumulative prose. It is a joy to read and in the style it is written it reinforces information while delighting the reader.
Before my own daughter was born I already had purchased a collection of books for her. She still loves to read and wants to work in education with children. She was thrilled I bought books for her future children and didn’t think me crazy. I look forward to adding more books from Dawn to my personal collection. Thank you for raising the bar in children’s books. Your writing shows respect for children.
— Pat De Maria (Note to Author – September 2002)
Under One Rock: Bugs, Slugs and Other Ughs is a charming picture book illustrating a nursery rhyme-style poem about life around and below a gray rock in a meadow. The activities of slugs, millipedes, crickets, spiders, etc. are described in a simple manner. The poem is cute and its content is generally accurate (although I’m not sure that turtles “lay in the shade” (p. 3). Likewise, the illustrations are simplified, yet generally accurate and not anthropomorphized in any way. The book is enriched with two pages of information on the animals described in the rhyme, a list of nature books for young children, and the names of conservation organizations including their websites. This book respects both the animals it describes and the children who will enjoy it. Read it to a kid. One quibble: the subtitle is at odds with the positive aspects of the rest of the book.
— Science Books & Films – Catherine Reed, Univ. of Minnesota (Sept./Oct. 2002))
Underneath rocks lives a whole community of creatures just waiting to be discovered. This book is informative, yet rhythmic and engaging. With the repetetive verses, children will soon be reading along. Come discover this hidden habitat with your budding ecologist.
— National Wildlife Federation – Backyard Buddies – www.nwf.org (May 2003)
Under One Rock is a poem-formated book about insects and a little boy. This boy picks up a rock and finds many insects such as earthworms, ants and spiders. I liked the artwork because it almost looked real, especially with the bright colors that stick out.
I also enjoyed this book because the author describes the bugs very clearly. I also like how all the bugs are friends and neighbors. I recommend this book for children 2 to 10 eyars old, and for any children who love poems and insects.
— Alaska Wellness – Kodi Ace, age 11 (July/August 2007)
Under One Rock explores the interconnectedness of all living things, told in a similar cumulative format as the Mother Goose classic, This is the House that Jack Built . . . only what could be better than bugs and slugs!
— Mother Rising Blog (motherrising.blogspot.com) (March 17, 2010)
Cayden’s comments: “This book is kind of like the other one that we read, On One Flower. In that book they all lived on a flower but in this book all of the things live under a rock! In the beginning of this book there is a letter written by a spider. There is a big rock in the grass and a boy lifts it up and sees what is under it. He found worms, a spider, beetles, and some other bugs too. There were a lot of things that lived underneath that rock. I liked the part in the back of the book where it tells more things about the bugs in the book. It said that some slugs have more than 20,000 teeth! That is a lot of teeth! I want to go outside and peek under some rocks to see if I can find some of these things.”
Parent’s comments: Like, On One Flower, Under One Rock: Bugs, Slugs and other Ughs is a great educational book for a young child. My son loved seeing what different types of creatures lived underneath the rock and learning more about them. He is definitely excited to do some exploring of his own and I am sure there will be no rock left unturned in our yard!
— Kids Reader Views – Cayden Aures (age 6) and Mom (October 2010)