Monday, April 21, 2008

Quest for the Tree Kangaroo

Montogomery, Sy. Quest For The Tree Kangaroo. 2006. Boston, Massachusetts: Houghton Mifflin Company.

Readers will learn quite a bit of history, geography, culture and science in this book about an expedition to New Guinea. Lisa Dabek, a forty-five year old scientist takes a team of 14 people on a quest to find a rare mammel called the Tree Kangaroo. Lisa grew up in New York City and always had asthma, so as a child she could not participate in sports and therefore found herself studying the behavior of animals. She was fascinated about why they did the things they do. She eventually became a scientist who would study animal behavior. In 2003, she decided to form a team of people to travel and study the creatures abroad. Readers will learn about the struggles, hardships, and great rewards that are involved with studying animals in the wild.

This book is broken up into ten sections making it extremly easy for the reader to follow. It creates a timeline so that we know who Lisa is, where she came from, and how her life path led her to the study of mammals in the wild. We follow along as the group boards the tiny plane and heads to this foreign land. The information is abundant in this book. Facts are simply added into the text, making it an extemely useful tool for any science classroom. The pictures are amazing as well. They will take your breath away looking at all the beautiful mountains, and waterfalls. Readers will also get a glimpse of the beautiful languages, and culture of the people that are from New Guinea. The end of the book contains several websites with more information about the Tree Kangaroos and where they are located. It also has several words in Tok Pisin, one of the many langugage in New Guinea, that is a great tool for extending the lessons in this book. I highly recommend this book.

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