We all have a responsibility to look after our surroundings and care for the creatures who also make their homes in them. What I have today are three beautiful books with themes of protecting our environment and looking out for bees and other insects.
‘Omar, the Bees and Me,’ by Helen Mortimer, illustrated by Katie Cottle (Owlet Press) – publishing March 2021.
When Omar brings in some honey cake that reminds him of his beekeeping grandpa, it gives his teacher an idea and soon the whole class is absorbed in making their town more bee friendly.
Omar and Maisie discover a shared family passion around bees as their friendship blossoms alongside the flowers. A sustainability story about making little wins for our big planet and finding the things that connect us all. 4+
This is a gorgeously-illustrated book which highlights the importance of bees and what we can do in our communities to help them. I love the idea of creating a bee corridor of flowers for the bees to pollinate and enjoy – we shall be planting wildflower seeds in our garden to tempt in our fuzzy friends.
The story also highlights the importance of our families and things that remind us of home when we are far away – such as the honey cake Omar brought in to school which reminded him of his bee-keeping grandpa in Syria. A brilliant read full of facts and ideas to intrigue readers.
‘Poppy Goes Wild,’ by Nick Powell, illustrated by Becca Hall (Little Steps Publishing)
Poppy is on a mission to save her grandad’s farm by returning the countryside to a time when flower meadows grew wild and native animals flourished. Can Poppy succeed in helping nature to work its magic? 7+
Foreword by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall – the multi-award-winning writer and broadcaster known for his uncompromising commitment to seasonal, ethically produced food and his concern for the environment.
This story is jam-packed with the names of all sorts of creatures which children could hope to spot on a visit to the countryside: skylarks, peregrine falcons, and otters. It explores how the re-wilding of developed areas could help bring back species which have almost disappeared from our countryside and our dictionaries – leaving areas to reseed and sprout wildflowers, allowing rivers and streams to follow their natural paths and re-establish wetlands and so on.
Sure to spark any child’s interest in their natural surroundings and encourage them out into the great outdoors!
‘Lottie Loves Nature: Bee-ware!’ By Jane Clarke, illustrated by James Brown (Five Quills)
Lottie loves wildlife and dreams of becoming a nature show presenter like Samira, host of her favourite programme Every Little Thing. Lottie has been reading about the decline in the number of insects in nature. With the help of her tech neighbour Noah, she decides to build a bug-hotel to encourage their return. But buzzing-mayhem, they are interrupted by a swarm of bees invading Mr. Parfitt’s garden next door. Can Lottie help save the bees before the exterminator arrives? Nature Hooks: bee and bug facts, pollination, butterfly feeder, how to make a bug hotel. 6+
I really love how this series cleverly combines fact and fiction in one highly-illustrated package. The scrapbook-style pages break up the text for young readers and explain concepts like ‘habitats,’ the importance of insects and different species of bees. This book is also packed with activities and ideas to help boost the bee population and natural diversity. Perfect for showing readers how everyone has the power to make a difference.
I’d love to hear if you try any of the bee and habitat-saving ideas highlighted in any of these wonderful books.
*Many thanks to all the lovely publishers who sent me these titles to review*