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Kelsey Rutter-Williamson

October 4, 2017

EDUC 5473

Professor Shaunda Wood

Annotated Literary Bibliography

Leger, D. C., & Churcher, D. (2002). Maxine's Tree. Victoria, BC: Orca Book.

Maxine’s Tree is a story about a young girl who travels with her father, Nannie, and

cousin, Eddie, to the Carmanah Valley on weekends, where her father builds trails, so people can

come and visit the ancient rainforest. One day, Maxine and her cousin hike up a hill, look out

over the valley and notice that the trees on a mountainside across the valley have all been cut

down. When Maxine asks her father if the forest will ever grow back, he explains that, while it

will be replanted, it will never be the same because all of the things that lived in the forest are no

longer around to work together and provide for each other, but he explains, that this is the reason

they are creating the trails, so that maybe outsiders can come and see the beauty of the rainforest

and be inspired to save it too.

When Maxine hears about the destruction happening in the rainforest, she becomes

worried for her favourite tree, and she searches for a way to keep it safe. Eventually, she comes

to the idea that she will claim her tree, and props a sign with her name on it in its branches, for

she decides that nobody can cut down another person’s favourite tree. The rest of her family

follows suit, and soon, four trees are all claimed as favourites. The next weekend, when Maxine

and her family return, she notices that the signs that her and her family have posted are not the

only ones anymore, but now many people have claimed trees as their favourites, and the forest is

now filled with signs.


Maxine’s Tree is a very simple book that could very easily fit the Next Generation

Science Standards (NGSS) in kindergarten when discussing Earth and human activity. It is a

great story about a young child who takes the initiative to help save her environment. The story

is so simple that it could be very helpful in explaining to young children that peoples’ actions can

have a drastic effect on their environment. There are many activities that can be produced from

this story; for example, a teacher could have students brainstorm how they can help to make a

difference in their own environment, and the students could create their own small movement to

help improve their environment just like Maxine did to save her tree.

Maillet, M., Mitcham, A., Sock, S., & Martin, R. (2005). Comment la rivière Petitcodiac devint

boueuse = Tan tel-kisi-siskuapuaqsepp Petikotiak sipu = How the Petitcodiac River

Became Muddy. Moncton, N.-B.: Bouton d’Or Acadie.

How the Petitcodiac River Became Muddy is just as its title describes: a short First

Nations’ legend about how the Petitcodiac River became muddy. The book, written in English,

French, and Mi’kmaq, tells of how, a long while ago before there was a Tidal Bore, the

Petitcodiac River was clear and mostly undisturbed but populated by lobsters and other fish

which fed the Mi’kmaq people. However, an eel came along searching for food and began eating

all the fish in the river. Those fish that survived feared the eel, so they begged Glooscap’s

messenger, Loon, to ask him for help, for they knew he was the only one who could help them be

rid of the eel. Glooscap complied and promised anyone who agreed to fight the eel special

powers. Nobody volunteered but a small lobster, who Glooscap instantly transformed into an

enormous lobster, and he waited for the eel, ready to fight. After many days, the lobster came out

of the battle triumphant, but the Great Spirit was unhappy with the destruction that the lobster

and the eel had caused, so he cleaned up their mess and created what is now called an eclipse. It
is said that, to remind us of these events, the Tidal Bore stirs up the mud in the Petitcodiac River

twice a day.

How the Petitcodiac River Became Muddy is a Mi’kmaq folk tale that seeks to explain

the creation of the tidal bore at the Petitcodiac River and the phenomenon called the eclipse. It

would be an excellent book that would meet NGSS required for the grade five unit pertaining to

the Earth’s place in the universe. The book would effectively introduce these new concepts and

how they have historically been explained, but after reading the book, the teacher could move

into the topic of tides and how they are influenced by the moon. It would also be a great

introduction to the concept of an eclipse. This book could also prompt a field trip to the

Petitcodiac River, which could enable students to see exactly what a tidal bore is, and further

activities could stem from this trip.

McAllister, I., & Read, N. (2017). Wolf Island. Victoria, British Columbia: Orca Book.

Wolf Island, a book beautifully illustrated with colour photographs, follows a lone wolf

on his journey to creating his own family. After he leaves the family he is born into, the wolf

finds himself on an island, neighbouring his old home, in the Great Bear Rainforest, where he

finds himself at home due to its abundance of his favourite foods. However, the book tells of

how the wolf longs to find a mate so that he can create a family. In the meantime, the wolf

enjoys his new home on the island and all that it provides for him. The book goes on to tell of

how each animal contributes to the maintenance of their environment and to the well-being of

each other. The wolf hunts the salmon, and what he does not eat, the birds will, and when they

are through, the insects and the worms take their turn. What is left behind is absorbed into the

earth, and nothing is wasted.


After some time, a female wolf arrives on the island, and eventually the male wolf finds

her with the help of some other animals. From then on, they remain together as mates. The book

goes on to tell how the two wolves’ pups are born in the springtime and raised into strong wolves

who eventually go on to follow in their parents’ footprints. The pups eventually must leave their

families, so they may too create their own.

Wolf Island could be an excellent introduction for a fifth-grade class to a unit on how

plants and animals are interdependent in our environment. The book explains how the fish

provide food for the wolves and that which is left over is food for the birds who leave food for

the worms who create a richer soil, and so on. With their class, a teacher could conduct a science

experiment comparing the growth of a plant that is able to depend upon its environment to aid in

its growth and that of a plant that is unable to rely on its environment to help it grow. This

activity could even be integrated with a math lesson as the students could monitor and chart the

growth of each plant.

Roy, R., Mitcham, A., & Sock, S. (2012). Glooscap, les castors et le Mont Sugarloaf = Kluskap,

kapitk aqq Sugarloaf Mountain = Glooscap, the Beavers and the Sugarloaf Mountain.

Moncton, N.-B.: Bouton d’Or Acadie.

Glooscap, the Beavers and the Sugarloaf Mountain is a Mi’kmaq legend written in

English, French and the Mi’kmaq language, that tells of how Glooscap created the Mi’kmaq

people in his own image and altered the size or strength of all animals, except for the beaver, to

ensure there was harmony on the Earth. He then taught his people how to survive and to use

rivers to travel, but one summer, as some families are camping next to the Restigouche River

trying to fish for salmon, they notice that the salmon are no longer moving upstream. The source

of their misfortune is soon revealed; the beavers have built a dam that stretches across the entire
river, which cuts off the flow of water. The Mi’kmaq people try to destroy the dam themselves

but with no success. They decide to ask the loon, Glooscap’s messenger, to find him for them,

and he soon arrives. The Mi’kmaq people tell Glooscap of their problem, and he manages to

destroy the beavers’ dam in one kick. Due to the debris that breaks off from the dam, Glooscap

manages to create new landforms. As the chief of the beavers is trying to escape the wrath of

Glooscap, he catches him by the tail, spins him around and lets go of him, and as soon as the

beaver lands, he is turned to stone and becomes Sugarloaf Mountain. Glooscap then turns to the

other beavers, taps them on the head with his paddle, and they are shrunk to the size that we now

know today.

While this book is a Mi’kmaq folk tale that attempts to explain how certain landforms

were developed, it could be used to introduce the Earth’s major systems, including the

geosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and biosphere, and how they all interact. The book, which

explains the legend behind this interaction, would effectively lead into a grade five unit that

explains how these interactions have historically created some infamous landforms that are not

so far away. This book is an excellent resource as children can easily relate to it because the

landforms described within it are within driving distance. It would once again provide an

excellent opportunity for a field trip during which the students would be able to experience these

phenomena first-hand.

Vries, M. D., & Benoit, R. (2010). Fraser Bear: A Cub’s Life. Vancouver: Greystone Books.

Fraser Bear: A Cub’s Life is a story that revolves around the first few years of a black

bear’s life, while simultaneously exploring the life cycle of the salmon. It begins by introducing

the cub nestled safely in his den with his mother and sister. Their sleep is interrupted by a man

and his daughter who pull the cubs and their mother from their winter home. The man seems to
be studying the mother bear, but his daughter snuggles the babies in her coat, and names them:

Fraser and Samantha. When Fraser wakes, he is introduced to the outside world, the sounds of

the other animals, the smells, and the cold snow on his paws. Him and his sister stay close to

their mother who protects them and shows them to hunt. She helps them prepare for the winter,

and they stuff themselves full of nuts and bugs and berries, and they are shown how to catch

salmon from the river. Soon though, they are ready for hibernation again, and when Fraser Bear

wakes, he knows that it is his time to leave his family, and with all that his mother has taught

him, he is able to go off on his own.

The book explores the interconnectedness of the environment and how every animal

contributes to the lives of one another in a way that is simple for children to understand. It also

briefly mentions human intervention in the environment, and how we tend to take from it, but we

do not always return the favour to the animals we encounter in our environment. The book also

includes some helpful hints about bear safety as well as some fun facts about black bears and the

chinook salmon located in the Fraser River.

This book could be used in grade five to meet the NGSS for discussing human impacts on

Earth’s systems, particularly in discussing how humans can affect the habitats of other animals.

Essentially, the story is a discussion of how humans can have major effects on the lives of the

animals in their environment in ways that they may perceive as minor. This story could be an

introduction to how human actions, such as fishing, can have an effect on the animals in that

environment. As this book also focuses on the life cycle of the salmon, it would meet the NGSS

for the structures and processes unit for grade three. Fraser Bear would be a good introduction to

this unit, and the teacher could follow this up by having their students study the life cycles of a
variety of different animals, which could then be compared to that of the salmon discussed in the

book.

Wallace, M. (2015). An Inuksuk Means Welcome. Toronto, ON: Owlkids Books.

An Inuksuk Means Welcome uses Inuktitut words to represent each letter of the word

‘inuksuk’, which is a stone tower that people living in the Arctic use to guide them across their

snowy land. They help to show people how to find food or get home, and can even be used to say

“Welcome.” Each letter of the word ‘inuksuk’ is used to describe life in the Arctic. From the

animals found in the Arctic to the transportation used to cross the seas to the attire worn to brave

the weather, An Inukshuk Means Welcome is a colourful guide to life in the Arctic. It not only

includes Inuktitut translations of each word used for the letters, but it also includes how each

word would be written using Inuktitut symbols. The book is a beautiful guide to the ways of the

Inuktitut people.

This book is an excellent introduction to a grade three lesson on habitats, particularly that

of the Arctic. A teacher could begin by discussing how some organisms are able to live in certain

habitats but are not able to live in others and proceed by asking students to study different

habitats and the animals that live in them as well as what characteristics those animals possess

that make them suitable for their habitat. It could also provide cross-curricular benefits because it

is written as an acrostic poem. The lesson could provide an opportunity for the teacher to

integrate science and language arts by asking the students to create their own acrostic poems that

describe the different aspects of each habitat.