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Birds: Nature's Magnificent Flying Machines Hardcover – July 1, 2003

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 850L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Charlesbridge (July 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1570915164
  • ISBN-13: 978-1570915161
  • Product Dimensions: 11.4 x 9 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.7 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,520,753 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 3-6-Veteran science writer Arnold offers another winner: a clear, interesting book about how birds fly. In an easy-to-follow text, she discusses the concept of lift and how birds' wings and feathers are structured to make flight possible. She explains taking off, flapping, gliding, hovering and soaring, and steering and landing, and also describes how birds are structured for the kind of flying necessary to their way of life, with facts about how fast and how long certain species can fly. The book ends with a look at birds that can't fly as well as other animals that can, along with some facts about birds' dinosaur-age ancestor, the Archaeopteryx. Each spread contains one or two paragraphs with a large, full-color illustration as well as smaller, captioned pictures that cover such topics as bone structure and preening. The colorful artwork consistently clarifies the concepts being discussed. Many different species are depicted and identified. Excellent as a source for reports or for general-interest reading.
Sally Bates Goodroe, formerly at Harris County Public Library, Houston, TX
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Gr. 3-4. The author of Hawk Highway in the Sky (1997) and many other natural history titles captures the wonders of bird flight in this brief but specific examination of avian bones, feathers, and other physical features. Illustrated both aptly and expressively by precisely drawn portraits of more than three dozen birds--plus a selection of other animal fliers and gliders--Arnold's text explains the principles of aerodynamic lift, then considers the ins and outs of taking off, hovering, changing direction, and, trickiest of all, landing. From this soaring alternative or companion to the likes of Sandra Markle's Outside and Inside Birds (1994) and Robin Page's Animals in Flight (2001), illustrated by Steve Jenkins, children will not only learn the differences between primary, secondary, tertiary, covert, contour, and downy feathers but also come away with a deeper appreciation of how they all work to give birds, as it were, a leg up. John Peters
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Caroline Arnold is the author of more than 100 books for children. She writes both fiction and nonfiction and recently has illustrated some of her books with striking cut paper art. To see prints and cards of her illustrations, go to www.etsy.com/shop/CarolineArnoldArt. Recent nonfiction titles include A Polar Bear's World, A Bald Eagle's World, Global Warming and the Dinosaurs, A Panda's World, Giant Sea Reptiles of the Dinosaur Age, Super Swimmers, and Easter Island. Her recent fiction books include Wiggle and Waggle, a collection of five stories for beginning readers, and The Terrible Hodag and the Animal Catchers, a tall tale.
Her books have received awards from the American Library Association, the National Science Teachers Association, P.E.N., and SCBWI. Recently she received the Washington Post/Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award for her body of work, the Leo Politi Award from California Readers, and from the Children's Literature Council of Southern California, the Best Written and Illustrated Suite of Nonfiction for children.
Caroline's interest in animals and the out-of-doors began when she was a child growing up in Minneapolis, Minnesota. After majoring in art and literature at Grinnell College in Iowa, she received her M.A. in art from the University of Iowa. Some of her new books are illustrated with her own art. Caroline lives in Los Angeles and teaches part-time in the Writer's Program at UCLA Extension.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on April 6, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Superbly illustrated by Patricia J. Wynne and informatively written for young readers by Caroline Arnold, Birds: Nature's Magnificent Flying Machines is an extraordinary picture book for children detailing birds and their amazing ability to fly. From the mechanics of flapping, to different styles of wings, to how some birds use thermals or ocean winds to soar, Birds: Nature's Magnificent Flying Machines is an amazing fact-filled tour of one of nature's common yet ingenious miracles. No school or community library collection should be without a copy of Caroline Arnold and Patricia J. Wynne's Birds: Nature's Magnificent Flying Machines.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By K. Roman VINE VOICE on June 16, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Focuses on the anatomical design of birds that allows flight and the physics of flight. At the same time, it is part field guide with detailed and colorful illustrations of a wide variety of birds. Some topics covered are lift, wings, feathers, taking off, flapping, gliding, soaring, and migration. There is a cursory mention of other flyers and gliders like bats, squirrels, and extinct flying reptiles. Karen Woodworth-Roman, Children's Science Book Review.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By S. Grentz on February 23, 2006
Format: Hardcover
My second grader had to do a research for her science fair project on "The Flight of A Bird" as she named her project and this book had perfect and complete information at that level. We did not have to go look anywhere else for additional information. It is very easy to read and understand and has lots of illustrations to explain the topics. I absolutely love it. Note that I did not know anything about how a bird flies and just by reading this book with my daughter I understand the topic as well as she does now. So we both learned from it.
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