Planting the trees of Kenya : the story of Wangari Maathai (#39846Z1)

by Nivola, Claire A

9 reviews & awards | 5 full-text reviews

Hardcover Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2008
Price: USD 18.41
Description: 32 unnumbered pages : color illustrations, color maps ; 24 x 28 cm
Dewey: 333.72; Audience: Lower Elementary; Reading Level: 5.6
AR 5.9 LG .5 121421EN; RC 9.2 3; LEX AD870L
From the publisher: Grades Pre-K/K-3; Ages 5-8
From Kirkus: Ages 5-9; PW: Ages 5-8; SLJ: Gr 2-4; read the full-text reviews


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From Follett

"Frances Foster books.";Includes bibliographical references. Relates the story of Wangari Maathai, a native Kenyan who taught the people living in the highlands how to plant trees and care for the land.

From the Publisher

Wangari Maathai, winner of the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize and founder of the Green Belt Movement, grew up in the highlands of Kenya, where fig trees cloaked the hills, fish filled the streams, and the people tended their bountiful gardens. But over many years, as more and more land was cleared, Kenya was transformed. When Wangari returned home from college in America, she found the village gardens dry, the people malnourished, and the trees gone. How could she alone bring back the trees and restore the gardens and the people?

Bill McKibben, author of The End of Nature, says: "Wangari Maathai's epic story has never been told better--everyone who reads this book will want to plant a tree "

With glowing watercolor illustrations and lyrical prose, Claire Nivola tells the remarkable story of one woman's effort to change the fate of her land by teaching many to care for it. An author's note provides further information about Wangari Maathai and the Green Belt Movement. In keeping with the theme of the story, the book is printed on recycled paper.

Product Details
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux
  • Publication Date: April 1, 2008
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Edition: 1st ed.
  • Dewey: 333.72
  • Classifications: Biography, Nonfiction
  • Description: 32 unnumbered pages : color illustrations, color maps ; 24 x 28 cm
  • ISBN-10: 0-374-39918-2
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-374-39918-4
  • LCCN: 2006-038249
  • Follett Number: 39846Z1
  • Reading Level: 5.6
  • Audience: Lower Elementary
  • Grades: Pre-K/K-3
  • Ages: 5-8
  • Kirkus: Ages 5-9
  • Publishers Weekly: Ages 5-8
  • School Library Journal: Gr 2-4
  • ATOS Book Level: 5.9
  • AR Interest Level: LG
  • AR Points: .5
  • AR Quiz: 121421EN
  • Reading Counts Level: 9.2
  • Reading Counts Points: 3
  • Lexile: AD870L

Reviews & Awards
  • ALA Notable Children's Books, 2009
  • Book Links, 10/01/09
  • Booklist starred, 02/15/08
  • Horn Book Magazine, 05/01/08
  • Kirkus Reviews, 04/01/08
  • Parents' Choice Gold Award, 2008
  • Publishers Weekly starred, 03/10/08
  • School Library Journal starred, 04/01/08
  • Wilson's Children, 10/01/10

Full-Text Reviews
Booklist starred (February 15, 2008 (Vol. 104, No. 12))
Grades K-3. Kenyan activist Wangari Maathai was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004 for her environmental and human rights achievements. Founder of the Green Belt Movement, she has encouraged people to repair their economy, land, and health with simple, environmentally friendly acts, such as planting more trees. This beautiful picture-book biography echoes the potent simplicity of Maathai’s message with direct, spare prose and bright, delicate watercolors. Tracking forward from Maathai’s childhood in the rich landscape of Kenya’s highlands, the words and pictures clearly show how the activist’s deep connection with nature as a youth inspired her to develop sustainable practices as an adult. Nivola writes about potentially complex, abstract relationships, such as those between ecological preservation and human health, with clear language that shows connections that children will easily grasp. The story of how each human and tree can make a difference will inspire young people, who will want to linger over the wide, double-page landscapes picturing people restoring stripped land to green, thriving communities and forests. An author’s note offers more about Maathai’s inspiring story. Point teachers and parents seeking more information to Maathai’s autobiography, Unbowed (2006), which was named a Booklist Adult Editor’s Choice.

Read all 5 full-text reviews …

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