Title: On Gull Beach (On Bird Hill and Beyond #3)
Author: Jane Yolen
Illustrator: Bob Marstall
Publisher: The CornellLab Publishing Group, 2018
Themes: starfish, beach life, seagulls, predators, Cape Cod, shoreline habitat, ecology, wildlife, New England
As I was walking on Gull Beach,
I saw a starfish within reach.
Set down my pail of sticks and stones,
Of shells and bleached small ends of bones.
On Gull Beach brings us to an idyllic shoreline in Cape Cod, where gulls hover, dive, and chase with pitched acrobatics in pursuit of a starfish. In pristine rhyme, Yolen takes the reader on another journey with the boy and his dog and the perilous situation of a little starfish in the beaks of those hungry gulls.
Why I like this book:
Yolen’s poetry creates a tremendous amount of tension as the little boy races down the beach concerned for the fate of this starfish. The contrast of blue spreads focused on the war in the skies and the pages with sea, sand and sky add to the pursuit as well as entrenching the story so clearly in its familiar Cape Cod shoreline. This is a thrill for nature lovers and a terrific fit for any elementary unit studying various habitats (as well as a unit with a New England focus, of course!)
As with all Cornell Lab Publishing Group books, 35% of net proceeds from the sale of this title goes directly to the Cornell Lab to support projects such as children’s educational and community programs.
4 packed pages of back matter explore life on a New England Beach, and how young readers can help our beaches and wildlife.
I highly recommend reading all three books of this Yolen/Marshall On Bird Hill and Beyond series with your children. On Bird Hill, the boy and his dog witness the miracle of a chick emerging from an egg. On Duck Pond, on a visit to a serene pond, the duo meets birds, frogs, and turtles.
Each week a group of bloggers reviews picture books we feel would make great educational reads. To help teachers, caregivers and parents, we have included resources and/or activities with each of our reviews. A complete list of the thousands of books we have reviewed can be found sorted alphabetically and by topics, here on Susanna Leonard Hill’s website.