Reviews:

"In simple terms but with scientific vocabulary, Becker introduces such diverse topics as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, density, desalination, sea-floor spreading, global warming, tsunamis, oil spills, osmosis, camouflage and overfishing. Almost every spread provides readers with something to do, whether small lifestyle changes that will help the ocean or a hands-on demonstration. Over half the book is dedicated to the amazing adaptations that help ocean animals survive -- swim bladders, echolocation, blubber and body shapes are just a few. Fascinating facts appear throughout and are sure to amaze." --Kirkus

"After an introduction to the ocean and its importance to all life on the planet, Becker gets right down to the nitty-gritty, presenting dozens of hands-on activities illustrating ideas related mainly to sea creatures. Generally simple to carry out, the projects are presented with a list of materials, step-by-step directions, and a discussion section called 'What's Going On?' Topics include layers of water in the ocean, fat as an insulator for marine mammals, methods of camouflage used by sea creatures, and why some whales have baleen, while others have teeth. The full-color illustrations include digital drawings of the projects described as well as photos of the ocean and its inhabitants. Sidebars carry additional information related to the activities. While sounding alarm bells about changes in the temperature, acidity, and oxygen in the world's oceans, Becker encourages readers to learn about the ocean and to take action on behalf of Earth's 'Big Blue Sea'." --Booklist

"'You cannot live without the ocean. Your blood, sweat and tears are all versions of seawater we carry within us so we can survive on land,' writes Becker in a book that features hands-on experiments involving ocean life. Areas of focus include convection currents, which readers can explore by creating an underwater volcano in a jar; whale communication; and oil spills. Photographs, illustrations, sidebars, and charts combine a playful spirit with valuable insight into ocean health. Ages 8-12." --Publishers Weekly

"3 1/2 stars out of 4
Don't judge a book by its cover, especially this one. One person I showed this book to thought it was a primary book – probably by Dr. Seuss. Another person couldn't understand why it was called The Big Green Book when it is clearly a big blue book. The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea is really a book about the ocean ecosystem written for the junior grades. If you or your students/children get past the cover, inside is a treasure trove of experiments and activities using everyday materials to explain some simple and some more complex scientific concepts. To quote the press release, 'The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea is a sea-riously fun collection of simple safe science experiments and games illustrating the magnificence and vulnerability of our planet's oceans.'

The activities use common household items, as long as your house has some M&Ms, goldfish crackers, grapes, rice, masking tape, a bowl, a pencil, napkins, and a watch, for "How Many Is Too Many?" for example. The activities are presented step by step with questions to guide the learning.

Look inside the bowl. Is there less than three of any type of fish? If so, then that species has become "extinct" – there aren't enough left to reproduce.

Author Helaine Becker has created a fun, informative, reader friendly resource that should appeal to young scientists. Illustrated by Willow Dawson's coloured black-outline drawings, the book also includes a number of coloured photos of the ocean world.

Readers can learn about the global warming, icebergs, ocean life, how pearls are made, tsunamis, and the great Pacific garbage patch, to name just a few of the interesting topics in this book. The table of contents is organized in three major headings: "Wet and Wild", "Fun With Fish", and "More Marine Marvels". There is an extensive index at the back of the book.

In addition to the activities, The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea also includes pages of information and sidebars that provide background information about the ocean, for example, the dangers of overfishing. Frequently, readers are reminded of things that they can do to reduce the problems that are being discussed.

The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea ends with a call to action to the young readers with a topic titled, "The Ocean of the Future".

Much of what we learn in the future will come from you and people like you who care about our planet! So keep learning as much as you can, wherever you can. The ocean's well-being is in your hands, and in the hands of ordinary people everywhere who want to make a difference.

This book will make a very good addition to your ocean science library. Readers will enjoy the hands on learning – if you can get them past the cover.

Highly Recommended."-CM Magazine




"This book is perfect in every way! Kids will not only learn more about the sea, but they will be able to do fun activities while learning ways they can save it as well. This book teaches about the importance of all life on the planet and how each little part plays a big picture in the world.

We love this book so much and love fun and interesting activities it comes with. Your kids will love learning and experimenting with this book!

Experiments using everyday materials help explain scientific concepts, such as why the ocean is salty, how temperature affects water density and why fish don’t get waterlogged.

A focus on pollution and other ecological hazards raises awareness. Young scientists will gain a hands-on understanding of how “booms” clean oil spills and how a garbage patch roughly twice the size of Texas came to exist in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Newsy sidebars bring readers up to date on efforts to combat environmental hazards — such as the use of oysters to help squelch pollution in urban waterways. An ideal tool for classroom use or the perfect way to spend a rainy day, The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea is an essential part of any science library."- Social Cafe



"Kids learn best by doing, and when a book encourages them to make a sugar cube mountain, an iceberg in the bathtub, or a pair of undersea goggles, they’re likely to embrace it with great enthusiasm.

The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea presents oceanic science to kids using a conversational tone and fun ocean-themed experiments. Multitalented author Helaine Becker ups the book’s appeal with entertaining headlines and amusing introductions, while playing to kids’ love of all things funny and gross (“freshwater fish pee a lot!”).

The 35 experiments feature instructions that are clear and easy to follow, and use simple household materials, such as tape, a turkey baster, dish detergent, food colouring, sponges, and various food items. The text explores environmental issues including ocean pollution, dead zones, tsunamis, and oil spills, while explaining the science behind buoyancy, air pressure, locomotion, and more....

With 80 pages of experiments and facts, this is a book that will keep young ocean enthusiasts entertained for months."     - Quill and Quire


"{FOUR STARS}  How do fish breathe underwater? Why is the ocean salty? Do otters really use tools to eat their food? Through simple experiments and fun facts, The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea teaches readers about the ocean and the importance of preservation. With a particular focus on pollution, ecological changes, overfishing and other environmental threats, this informative book promotes environmental awareness and suggests ways everyone can help to protect the ocean. Author Helaine Becker has created a book that uses educational hands-on activities to interest young readers in the watery world of the ocean and inspire them to develop their own ideas about environmental preservation. Although these activities are quite simple, each effectively demonstrates a scientific concept or animal adaptation. Every experiment has a set of clear step-by-step instructions and requires only a few household items to complete. Accompanying “What can you do?” sections suggest small environmentally-friendly changes readers can make in their daily lives to contribute to the health of the ocean. Willow Dawson’s illustrations add charm to the text. This book is an excellent addition to any classroom or home library."- Portland Book Review


"In most cases, parents have two main reasons they choose a particular book to purchase for their kids: education and entertainment. The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea has impressive amounts of both. Written by Helaine Becker, this book presents kid-friendly, fun information while still managing to be succinct in its educational delivery. Readers, even those with short attention spans, will learn a lot just by reading the book on their own. However, parents can take the educational process to another level by helping the kids with the various hands on activities and experiments included in the book. Here are some highlights:

What’s there to read?

Learn tips for saving water and energy

Find out about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Learn about glow in the dark marine life

Discover interesting information about different aquatic creatures

What’s there to do?

Ocean Layer Cake Experiment- A colorful way to see what happens when waters of different temperatures and from different locations (rain, snow, streams and rivers) meet in the ocean.

Red Fish, Blue Fish, One Fish, Two Fish– A game which experiments with camouflage for sea animals.

Zip! Zap! Zing! – Hands on activity for making a jellyfish stinger - with adult supervision of course!

What are kids saying?

“That’s pretty cool.”

“Can we try that?”

“Oh, I didn’t know that would work!”

Adults should be available to follow up with kids on the different scientific topics, ideas and questions they may have when going through the book. In addition, as with most “green” initiatives, The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea does include some information about global warming." -Bella Online



"4.7 out of 5 -  a great resource to teachers." - YAbookcentral.com



"Excellent top notch book! Don’t let the dreary boring cover fool you (and it might fool some of your students), because this book is stuffed with incredibly well explained concepts as well as fun experiments that would make great jumping off points for science fair projects!! My favorite is the experiment to illustrate how underwater creatures use camouflage.  The book is current and full of relevant tips for what a student can do to help make eco-friendly changes in their own life. The illustrations are simple, yet effective. A must have for a school library. Elementary – ESSENTIAL " - Kiss the Book




"What makes this book special is that it is not just a learning tool. It is also a book that will help children to see that each and every one of them can do something to help protect the world’s marine environments. Throughout the book the author the author answers the question “What can you do?” Readers will see that there are lots of things that they can do on a regular basis that will help keep the world’s oceans and seas healthy.

Packed with information and excellent activities and projects that are both educational and entertaining, this is a book that both teachers and parents will enjoy sharing with their children." - Through the Looking Glass




"Gr 3-5–This lively look at marine ecology and biology and the effects
humans can (and do) have on the world’s ocean will have broad appeal.
A chatty text introduces readers to an ocean in jeopardy and goes on to
present a baker’s dozen of marine experiments. From trying to eat a
pretzel-stick/cream cheese “sea urchin” otter style (without getting stuck)
to colorful “layer-caking” ocean zones, the activities offer a recipe for
ingredients, step-by-step procedures, a question as to what the results
seem to divulge, and a “What’s Going On?” explanation. Illustrations
include colorful art, photos, and diagrams. The book closes with a look at
the future of our liquid life-support system. Approachable and useful."
- School Library Journal








Winner of the
*Lane Anderson Award for Science Writing for Children*
and the
* Outstanding Youth Book Award *
from the Canadian Science Writers' Association!

Shortlisted for the
* Red Cedar Award *

Longlisted for the
* Information Book of the Year *
from the Vancouver Children's Roundtable

Based on the idea that knowledge is power, The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea shows how the ocean works and why this immense ecosystem needs our protection. Experiments using everyday materials help explain scientific concepts, such as why the ocean is salty, how temperature affects water density and why fish don't get waterlogged. A focus on pollution and other ecological hazards raises awareness. Young scientists will gain a hands-on understanding of how "booms" clean oil spills and how a garbage patch roughly twice the size of Texas came to exist in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Newsy sidebars bring readers up to date on efforts to combat environmental hazards -- such as the use of oysters to help squelch pollution in urban waterways. An ideal tool for classroom use or the perfect way to spend a rainy day, The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea is an
essential part of any science library. Kids Can Press ISBN:1554537460



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