Flow, spin, grow Looking for patterns in nature

Patchen Barss

Book - 2018

Patterns appear again and again, sometimes in the most unexpected places. Why? Explores branching and spiraling (with mention of spinning, stacking, and cracking) to reveal the shared connections between objects expressing different types of patterns.

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Location Call Number   Status
Children's Room jE/Barss Checked In
Instructional and educational works
Picture books
Toronto, ON ; Berkeley, CA : Owlkids [2018]
Main Author
Patchen Barss (author)
Other Authors
Todd (Illustrator) Stewart (illustrator)
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 26 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

Large, rhyming action words on each page twirl, whirl, swirl, grow, explore will capture young readers' attentions. Smaller, more detailed prose explains the concept of patterns in nature, specifically fractals and the Fibonacci sequence. Although Barss doesn't specifically mention these terms, he provides numerous examples by describing the branches of a tree and the Milky Way galaxy. He then makes connections within nature, comparing, for example, tree branches to rivers and bronchial tubes, and spiraling galaxies to snail shells and pigtail plants. The author continues with even more discoveries as he tells how branching, whether of water or oxygen, indicates flowing, and that spiraling, whether in shells that spiral out or storms that spiral in, indicates growing or shrinking. Digitally enhanced silkscreen paintings feature children engaged with nature's patterns and encourage readers to make their own discoveries. A concluding author's note provides more information on different kinds of patterns. Pair with Sarah C. Campbell's Growing Patterns: Fibonacci Numbers in Nature (2010) and Mysterious Patterns: Finding Fractals in Nature (2014) for a rich experience.--Angela Leeper Copyright 2018 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-Nature and patterns go hand in hand, as Barss and Stewart delightfully display throughout this young nonfiction choice. Within these pages are multiple levels of story. At the most primary level, the biggest display words on the page-if read sequentially-create a simple poem that spans the entire book. (These big words are the poem that is displayed on the first spread.) At a more complex level, Barss heightens those display words by relating them to a pattern in nature through lyrical prose. At yet another level, Stewart's beautifully muted illustrations are filled with patterns. At first, readers may notice simple line formations and polygons creating the bigger picture; but when they look closer, they may notice lightly-colored lines in the background that relate to the words on the page. Although the light lines are much more noticeable on the darker spreads, a close look will reveal them on each page. The illustrations are immersive and jammed with detail, encouraging readers to scrutinize and appreciate each page. The author's note at the back of the book delves more into patterns in nature and recommends a number of additional books about the topic for readers of all ages. VERDICT- A good addition to any early nonfiction collection. An especially wonderful book to read aloud and discuss with young nature-lovers.-Kristin Unruh, Siersma Elementary School, -Warren, MI © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Horn Book Review

This lyrical introduction to patterns found in nature eschews formal definitions (the term fractals, for example, is never used). Instead, Barss's focus is on encouraging children to explore and ask their own questions about branching river systems, spinning planets, and spiraling seashells. Eye-catching patterns abound in Stewart's texture-rich illustrations, rendered with silkscreen printing and digital media. Reading list. (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

A science-based book designed to encourage readers to explore nature.The opening double-page spread shows children in a pastoral setting engaged in a variety of activities: lying in the grass, playing with sand, looking off into the distance beyond what appears to be a fence, etc. These actions all pair well with the text, which encourages readers to "Explore, find more, join the show." Each spread features a key word or words set in outsized type, though the design (specifically, the placement of words on the page) is not consistentodd in a book about patterns. The use of perspective in this book is particularly noteworthy, including aerial views, views from below, and cross-sections, which will help keep readers engaged despite the muted colors. The subdued palette is an interesting choice for a book focused on nature, which often comes in vibrant and rich hues. The illustrations (a combination of silkscreen printing and digital media) portray a racially diverse cast of characters and highlight patterns and details as the text gives examples of spinning, whirling, and twirling in nature. Barss emphasizes that different things can be examples of the same concept (like branches in trees, rivers, bodies), neatly communicating complicated ideas to youngsters. Though the design is inconsistent, the combination of clear illustrations and easy-to-read-aloud text will help make complex concepts understandable, especially for younger readers. (author's note) (Informational picture book. 3-7) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.