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A Is For Arches: A Utah Alphabet (Discover America State by State) Hardcover – August 19, 2003
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"We'll start with Utah's arches, made from wind, frost, and rain. Nature's rocky sculptures--an art that can't remain."
About the Author
Becky Hall is an elementary school teacher who lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband and two children. She is an active member of her local library/media association and the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. She loves children's bookstores and regularly attends writing workshops. In her free time, Becky hikes in the mountains of Utah with her dogs.
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Each page has a little rhyme to go with the letter but it also has a sidebar that gives more information about the topic for that letter. For example, letter B is for bees and it says,
"Busy Bees, that what we are--
Our symbol is the hive.
From mining to technology,
this helps our state survive."
Then the sidebar says, "The state insect is the honeybee. On the flag, bees buzz around a yellow hive. An early name for the state was "Deseret," which meant honeybee. Utah's nickname is the "Beehive State." The state motto is "industry" which means hard work. In 1847 Mormon pioneer settled in Salt Lake City in an attempt to find religious freedom. They had to be resourceful and industrious in order to survive in the harsh desert. They grew their own food, produced as much as they could for themselves, and mined the nearby hills. They tried to be self-sufficient and at one point, they even wanted to be a separate country. Found on the state seal and the flag, it makes sense that "industry" was chosen in 1959 as Utah's motto."
In case you want to know: A = arches, B = Bees, C = Coal and Copper, D = Dixie, E = Elk, F = Four Corners, G = Gulls, H = Handcarts, I = Irrigation, J = Jim Bridger and Jedediah Smith, K = Dr Willem Kolff (designed the first artificial heart), L = Great Salt Lake, M = Mormon Tabernacle Choir, N = Native clans, O = Outlaw Butch Cassidy, P = Pony Express, Q = Joe Quinney (formed the SLC Winter Sports Association), R = Railroad, S = Sego Lily, T = Topaz, U = Utahraptor, V = Vernal (Dinosaurland), W = Wasatch Mountains, X = Xeriscape, Y = Brigham Young, Z = Zions National Park.
Nine species of wildlife occur in the illustrations.
Brigham Young is mentioned 4 times.
The Utah Jazz is mentioned once.
Under "H is for Handcarts," Hall writes "The pioneers' success proved that using handcarts was an efficient and inexpensive way to move large numbers of people westward." Inexpensive, yes. Efficient... the journal entries describing the deaths and hardships lead to an alternative interpretation.
Nevertheless, this is a very nice book to give to anyone who would like o learn more about Utah.