Time to Explore"Look at those wild turkeys!" said a friend last week. We were arriving at a country plantation for a tour. I was reminded of the last time I saw a flock of wild turkeys. I was with friends in a remote area of Ohio and the question on all of our minds was, "when and where can we see more of them?" They don't normally come near populated areas, so it is exciting when I come upon them.
In the coming weeks, turkeys will be front and center, with many classrooms creating 'hand' turkeys. Here are a few of the fun facts I discovered in my research.
Did you know? . . .
that they are 'omnivorous' - ground feeders that will eat most anything. They love nuts, seeds, berries, and insects.
that their ideal habitat is a wooded grassland - complete with nut trees to enjoy during the day and to roost in at night.
that they not only 'gobble', but cluck, purr, yelp, whine, putt, cackle, and 'kee-kee.'
that Benjamin Franklin rallied to have the turkey as our national bird.
that turkey hens feed their chicks for a few days after they are hatched, and then they must fend for themselves.
that the turkey population has grown from 1.3 million in 1973 to over 7 million today - worldwide.
Book Reviews for KidsAmber Brown is on the Move by Bruce Coville and Elizabeth Levy
Paula Danziger's Amber Brown series (Beginning with Amber Brown is Not a Crayon) is now in the capable hands of two good friends who continued the series since her death. Amber is now in 4th grade and is dealing with divorce and moving issues. Even more significant for today's audience is her difficulty with focusing (especially during those dreaded test 'exercises'). Early readers (6 - 10) will identify, appreciate, and be entertained with her dilemmas and how she deals with life. Early readers amy also enjoy, Amber Brown is Tickled Pink.
Summer camp is a great setting for adventure, new relationships, and problem solving. As Eleanor describes her experiences, she discovers that she can barely remember her fears and discomforts from the beginning days. It is a light, fun read, particularly geared to girls (early readers 6 - 10). Also read, Like Pickle Juice on a Cookie.
This Newbery Honor winner (The Underneath) has written another charming modern folk tale. She weaves a tale of delightful raccoons recently recruited to be swamp scouts with a warm 'human' 12 year old boy who will win your heart. Throw in the massive furry 'Sugar Man' - plus a profit seeking developer - and you have a regional story filled with drama, heroes, and imagination. (8 - 14 boys and girls)
Twerp by Mark Goldblatt
This book has a little different slant on bullying written from the perspective of a group of boys who ruled a neighborhood in Queens, New York, in 1969. The story emerges from a journal that 6th grader, 'Julian', is required to write in lieu of being suspended from school. Episode after episode will find you chuckling - and surprised - how enterprising and remorseful, the characters are. The audience would include fans of the 'wimpy kids' series. (9 - 13 boys and girls)
In My BackyardMy backyard is in desperate need of rain. The pond is the lowest ever. Rain may be on its way! I would like to close with a 'very' short tribute to the wild turkey.
Ode to Wild Turkeys
On a calm autumn day in the woodland,
A male turkey struts - oh so grand.
The hens scavenge close to the ground,
Looking for nuts all around.
Wild turkeys waddle and wobble,
Just listen for cackles and gobbles.
Some grace dining room tables,
But most look for food where they're able.
By Joan Bock
Until next time. . . .
Be Creative. . . . Inspire Others . . . . Enjoy Life
P.S. Be sure to try odysseylearning.com for holiday gifts (games) for the whole family.