Emily the Chickadee is featured in a three-book series by Carol Zelaya: Emily Waits for Her Family, Caring for Emily’s Family, and Emily’s New Home. This beautiful series illustrated by Kristin Metcalf is a group of rhyming books that teachhow children to observe nature. While I don’t typically review books as a group, I am going to do it here and see how it works.
In Emily Waits for Her Family, it is spring and a young girl spots a pregnant chickadee sitting in a tree. She names the mommy-to-be Emily and watches as she builds a nest in the flower box outside her window and waits while her three eggs hatch into baby birds. Soon four birds sit in the tree singing happily to their human friend below.
Emily and her family of three return in the summer to keep the little girl company and she cares for them in Emily Cares for Her Family. The girl buys the chickadees a feeder and fills it with seed. Then she buys them a birdhouse so they can stay warm and dry, and finally a birdbath so they can splash and play. The girl enjoys watching the birds in her yard through her window, where the reader sees the flowerbox that Emily had once built her nest in.
In the final book of this series, Emily’s New Home, the young girl is sad because she has moved away and she misses her birdie friends. Autumn has turned to winter and she wishes winter would just go away. Then one spring day the girl notices some twigs and straw on the floor of the front porch. Looking closer she finds a nest and her friend Emily waitng for another new family. The reader is then encouraged to care for her feathered friends with food and water and with lots of love to keep their birdie friends coming back.
This is a sweet and charming series that shows children how to observe their feathered friends and care for them properly. Each book includes a Chickadee Log at the end where readers can write down their observations and in what season they are viewing the birds. Metcalf’s cover illustrations for the books change swith the seasons and give readers an indication of the passage of time, which compliments the lyrical prose that mentions each season.
My youngest daughter is quite taken with the Emily the Chickadee books, and even my older daughter does not mind listening in because she enjoys poetry. More than fluffy books about a bird and her family, this series shows young readers how to appreciate, love and observe their feathered companions. The Emily the Chickadee series will make an excellent gift.
Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂
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