Author: Marianne Berkes Illustrator: Jennifer DiRubbio
Age Level: 5-10 Years
Publishers: Dawn Publications
Going Home, The Mystery of Animal Migration by Marianne Berkes is an informational picture book for kindergarten through elementary/primary classes. The book highlights ten animals most of which migrate between the North and South American continents and a few that migrate from the Arctic to the Antarctic and vice versa.
Each animal narrates a short poem about ‘going home’ and there is a paragraph dedicated to giving more information about the animals’ migration. The book explores the migration of animals by land, air and sea.
The illustrations are very clear and provide supporting details about the animal. For example, while describing the migration of the Pacific salmon the illustrations show the fish swimming upstream while the ‘v’ formation of the Canada geese helps young readers connect to common sights in the fall season.
The last few pages of the book have a detailed appendix with additional information on the animals along with list of resources for teachers and parents, including a list of books and websites. Do check out the extensive activities listed in the Dawn Publications website. The author also shares some useful tips for teachers on how to combine the book reading with age appropriate and meaningful activities in the classroom. Going Home is an excellent resource for cross curricular learning in the animals in winter unit.
If you’d like to extend the lesson with information on migration of animals closer to home, here are some links:
For information on migratory patterns of Dugongs, a sirenian like the manatee:
Migration Patterns – Dugong
To learn more about why Siberian Cranes are not sighted in India any more:
Siberian cranes skip India
International Crane Foundation | International Crane Foundation
Did you know the dragonfly migrates just like the Monarch Butterfly?
Top Ten Most Amazing Migrations | Earth Rangers Wild Wire Blog
The following websites have stunning pictures on animal migration, including that of the Wildebeests in the Serengeti, the great Indian Horseshoe Bats and the Christmas Island Red Crabs. Use these as conversation starters in class or at home.