Snowman - Cold = Puddle: Spring Equations (Hardcover)
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Poetry + Math + Science = A new way of looking at spring
Math meets metaphor in this eye-opening exploration of spring. Each clever equation is a tiny, perfect poem that prompts readers to look at the ordinary and see the miraculous. Can you look at an egg in a nest and see a jewelry box? How are sunlight and heat like an alarm clock? Engaging sidebars reveal the science behind the signs of spring.
About the Author
Laura Purdie Salas knows that poetry and science are both about exploring the world. Part poet and part scientist, Laura is the award-winning author of more than one hundred books, including If You Were the Moon, A Rock Can Be, and Water Can Be. She experiences spring, summer, fall, and winter in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Micha Archer's radiant collage illustrations for this book grew out of a New England spring. Micha is the author and illustrator of Daniel Finds a Poem, as well as the illustrator of Around the World in a Bathtub, Lola's Fandango, and The Wise Fool. She lives in western Massachusetts. www.michaarcher.com
"Equation poems" explore the science and poetry behind the processes of nature. "I am in awe of the scientific processes that make sunsets, storms, and, of course, spring," states Salas. Her volume begins with late-winter scenes in New England as "spring tiptoes in." Each page is a pleasing mix of colorful tissue-paper collage art, equation poems, and a bit of lively exposition discussing the science behind the equations. "Riverbank + otters = playground" features otters at play and text stating that "In spring, otters slip and slide in the dirty, slushy snow. No mittens. No hats. Just messy, muddy, mucky fun." A pair of brown-skinned siblings initially decked out in colorful winter garb are on hand in some scenes, their clothes changing with the seasons. The children's sense of fun and wonder enhances each scene they are in. One particularly beautiful page offers "1 dandelion x 1 breath = 100 parachutes." It appears opposite the "dusk + skunks = parade" equation, but happily, skunks are nocturnal, as the text informs readers. Not every equation adds up, though. Is "stampede" the best word in "stream + snowmelt = stampede!"? All in all, though, beautifully original art complements the fun of the playful poetry. Poetry + art = beauty.
From Salas’ point of view, “science + poetry = surprise!” Celebrating the natural world as winter turns to spring, this unusual volume offers a poetic equation on each page, accompanied by a vivid illustration and several short sentences of related text. A snowy scene depicting a downy woodpecker on a maple tree illustrates the statement “bark + beak = drum,” while a short paragraph comments that this bird is hammering at the tree to find bugs, though it might use faster drumming in the spring to assert its territory or attract a mate. Sometimes the writing takes a more lyrical tone, as in the “frogs + night = symphony” page, where the text likens a chorus of different frog species to an orchestra and ends with “Bullfrogs honk low and loud on their watery trombones.” Created with a variety of traditional media and digitally arranged, Archer’s detailed, vibrant collages reflect a sense of wonder, while clarifying the literal meaning of each equation and its commentary. A handsome, original book for reading aloud each spring.