Author: Julia Hubery; Illustrator: Mei Matsuoka
Book Summary: “Robbie the Raccoon and his friends love Father Oak and worry that he is sick when his leaves begin to turn color and fall off, but Robbie’s mother explains what the change means and helps him plant some acorns as a sign of hope for spring.”
With colorful illustrations Robbie takes you on his inquiry journey as he tries to understand why the leaves are falling from his favorite tree. Like most scientists, his community of friends support him and add to his wonderings and possible reasons. Soon his mother appears to facilitate their understanding of the falling leaves, seasons, and their role in both the changing of the seasons, and the sustainability of their environment.
Great for a PreK-3 audience, this story has the potential for multiple science connections, discussions, and investigations. Since Robbie’s mom comes in to provide some answers and guidance in the middle of the book, I would recommend this read after generating a list of ideas from students, or after some student generated investigations. You could always start the story, and then pause it before Robbie’s mom appears, have some student investigations, and then return to the story for an extended discussion.
Broad Science Connections
- Forest Environment
- Forest Animals
- Life Cycle of a Plant
Broad Literacy Connections
- Story Elements
- Main Character vs. Supporting Characters
- Sparking Student Generated Investigations and the Writing that Corresponds
- Sustainability/Giving Back