- Author: Lanie Keystone
Being an inveterate Children's Book lover, I'm always on the lookout for a new children's gardening book that really piques the imagination, engages the senses, offers solid information and just soars.
What's Inside A Flower, by veteran children's author, Rachel Ignotofsky was published this year and checks all those boxes and more.
Before I get to the “and more”, you might get a clue about the tone of the book from Ms. Ignotofsky's description of herself:
“Rachel grew up in New Jersey on a healthy diet of cartoons and pudding.”
Now for the “more”! The book is boldly illustrated by the author, whose background and training is in art. In fact, she was once a designer for Hallmark Cards. But the illustrations, as vital and elegant as they are, in a sense are the conduit for learning and understanding. For, the illustrations lead directly to and bolster that “solid information” that we hope to find in an important non-fiction book. One of Ms. Ignotofsky's primary goals in her work is to take complex scientific ideas and present them in exciting and understandable terms. As in her other books, she more than succeeds in helping readers of all ages understand. In this case, the knowledge is about the physiology, biology, and importance of plants and flowers and how they grow, flourish, exist, and co-exist in our world.
Learning about the development and growth of plants from seeds to roots to blooms gives children the foundation needed to build greater curiosity about science and inquiry right in their own backyard, down the block, or wherever one is lucky enough to find flowers blooming. This is a book that leads children, (and adults, as well), to ask more questions and confirm ideas already formed, because the author poses wonderful Socratic questions herself. Ignotofsky begins our exploration by telling us that, “Flowers grow everywhere….in cities, in jungles, soggy swamps, blistering deserts, on vegetables….” We follow her floral trail around the world which leads us to the heart of things—right “inside a flower!”
While “What's Inside A Flower?” is featured for children ages 4-8, older kids will grab onto the detailed information and be inspired to learn and journey even further into the wondrous world of flowers. This is a journey well worth sharing with the kids in your life, whether they be your in own family, your students, or the child within YOU!
You'll be engaged by the illustrations and nourished by the information—it's a winning combination.