The Unite for Literacy team works with its partners to develop a wide range of free, online children’s books, narrated in multiple languages, to celebrate language, culture and a love of reading. These short books feature wonderful images, and short pieces of text on each page, and along with the narration, help children and their families who are learning to speak English, or other languages.
Amphibian Ark’s Community Education Officer, Rachel Rommel-Crump, developed the text for five books about amphibians, which are beautifully illustrated with photos from our photo competition, and others which have been generously supplied by some of our partners. The first five books can be found on AArk’s “bookshelf” on the Unite for Literacy page, www.uniteforliteracy.com/aark/arkbooks. The new books are:
Amazing Amphibians – Introduces these amazing animals, providing some basic biological information, and encouraging readers to “Bring a map as you explore your neighbourhood and mark the places where amphibians might live”.
Fantastic Frogs – Shares information about frogs from different countries, and different breeding strategies, suggesting that you can “Visit a pond and look for tadpoles swimming close to the edge, or frogs sitting in the water.”
Super Salamanders – Explains where salamanders live and how they can regrow damaged limbs and recommending that you “Learn the name of a salamander or frog that lives near you.”
Secret Caecilians – Introduces these lesser-known amphibians and suggests that children can “Lie on your stomach, put your arms against your body, and try to move like a caecilian.”
Amphibian Heroes – Talks about the threats facing amphibians, and how amphibian heroes in Madagascar, Argentina, Japan and the US are helping to save them. It also recommends that you “Join an effort to protect wildlife habitat in your community, or start one with your friends.”
These books include English narration, and Spanish will be available soon. We hope you enjoy them!
Special thanks to Amphibian Ark’s Anne Baker, Luis Carrillo and Kevin Johnson who provided creative and editorial support throughout project. Thanks to Paul Crump and Joe Mendelson for reviewing the final books and providing helpful comments. Also, thanks to Andy Gluesenkamp and Tariq Stark for confirming factual information about some specific species.
We would not have had such engaging photographs to share with children if it wasn’t for the generosity of Todd Pierson, Dave Huth, Candace Hansen-Hendrikx, Arturo Muñoz, Ben Tapley, Paul Crump, Brian Gratwicke, Norhayati Ahmad, Federico Kacoliris, Melina Velasco, Aiko Taguchi, Devin Edmonds, Cassidy Johnson, Wikicommons contributors, and the AArk calendar contest photo entry participants. Finally, thanks to Unite for Literacy staff member Holly Hartman for her expertise, and who made creating the books such a fun and easy process.
The Amphibian Ark Team