A Place for Bats
By Melissa Stewart
Illustrated by Higgins Bond
There are more than 1100 species of bats on earth. North America has 45 kinds of bats but we really do not know much about them. Maybe it is because they are “creatures of the night”, maybe because we think only of vampire bats and forget all the other species that make our world a better place.
Melissa Stewart does a good job educating readers about the good that bats do and how our interaction with bats impacts their population. In the chapter entitled, “Fascinating Bat Facts”, she reminds us that bats are mammals.
The book is written so it can be read in two ways. For the younger readers the book can be a read aloud of the text at the top of the page where the main ideas are presented. For example, the second spread tells that wind turbines can harm bats, and turning off the turbines on calm nights helps “bats.. live and grow”. Adults can explain this to the younger readers, depending on their level of understanding, while second grade readers can read the explanations provided in the sidebar.
The story tells of the many dangers to the bats, and what we can do to alleviate them. The lyrical writing draws the reader in: do (whatever is appropriate for that danger) so bats can live and grow. In urban centers, for example, the “small hidden places” disappeared when trees were cut down. We can we can build bat houses to provide shelter.
Each spread ends with the phrase ‘bats can live and grow” drawing the reader in with the lyricism. The readers become active participants in this journey to protect bats. The last sidebar lists things we can do to help.
The illustrations accurately recreate the bats different habitats without sacrificing a whit of vivd color and detail. The endpapers depict the habitat range of the different species. This book would be a worthwhile addition to any reading list.
WICN.ORG Inquiry: Interview with Melissa Stewart
Melissa Stewart’s Science Clubhouse – http://www.melissa-stewart.com/books/mammals/bk_plbats1.html
Install a Bat House: http://www.batcon.org/index.php/get-involved/install-a-bat-house.html
- Title: A Place For Bats
- Author: Melissa Stewart
- Illustrator: Higgins Bond
- Publisher: Peachtree Publishers
- Reviewer: Anjali Amit
- Hardcover: 30 Pages
- ISBN: 978-1-56145-624-6
- Genre: Nonfiction Nature
- Lexile Score: 1130