A couple of weeks ago I was looking for books about trees for children. I was so excited when I found a picture book by Peter Wohlleben the author of The Hidden Life of Trees. In that book, he shares how trees communicate, feel and grow. Go here to read a blog post inspired by his book.
In the children’s book, Peter is writing a fictionalized version of himself as a naturalist who is talking to a lonely orphaned squirrel. Peter and the squirrel Piet start searching for tree children. Peter says that you can’t be lonely in a forest full of friends. The book is a reminder of the importance of preserving natural forests. A forest is home a many creatures.
Peter shares wonderful facts about trees as they wander around in the forest. They meet all sorts of creatures, from a family of caterpillars to a magnificent hawk. Peter talks about how the trees communicate and care for each other. Piet, the squirrel, begins to feel better when he realises that the beechnuts he has hidden and forgotten all about has turned into beech children.
“The most beautiful forest of tree children ever. And we found it.”
The message in the book is that trees need the protection of taller trees to survive and grow old. I like the book, but in contrast to his bestseller The Hidden Life of Trees, I do not love it. Writing for a younger audience is not easy and I do think that more amazing content about trees and their families could have been woven into the story. The last page has some interesting facts that you can use to further explore the exciting lives of tree families.
Peter has also written a book for older children – Can You Hear the Trees Talking. This book introduces children to interesting and fun facts about trees. Also, there are suggestions for outdoor activities and quizzes.
- How trees talk to each other – the wood wide web
- Why trees are important in the city
- How trees make us healthy and strong
- How trees get sick, and how we can help them get better
This book makes a lovely gift for curious nature lovers!