Racoons is one of the titles in my new favorite nonfiction series, Nocturnal Animals. Nocturnal Animals is published by Capstone Press under the Pebble Plus collection and you can't ever go wrong with a Pebble Plus book. Pebble Plus books are just right for emerging readers. On a two page spread the reader will find information on the left page and a full size photograph on the right side of the page. After reading the text, the reader is to easily identify the purpose of the photograph that illustrates the text. Each text page has about 5-6 lines of text with 3-4 sentences. Just enough information to think about and not get overwhelmed. Other features I like about this series is the table of contents, glossary, a page with more things to read about the topic, internet sites, and an index. All the traditional features one might expect with nonfiction books. Capstone always does a great job using words young readers could read and repeats many within the text. They also balance the amount of science vocabulary used for vocabulary growth and understanding.
I found lots of new learning for myself. A mother raccoon can have up to seven babies. They are born helpless and live in the den with her. When a raccoon shows their teeth, they are scared. There are three kinds of raccoons. Raccoons can live for 16 years. I love that I was able to read a book written for emerging readers and learned new things for myself.
The whole series will let us compare animals we may see in our own backyards. Other titles in this series are; bats, hedgehogs, opossums, porcupines, raccoons, and red foxes. I also think my students will enjoy making a connection to our learning about day and night. It's hard to visualize what might happen in the night, if we are sleeping.