Written by: Jacques Pasquet
Illustrated by: Yves Dumont
Translated by: Shelley Tanaka
For ages: 9-12 years
Topics Covered: STEM, Environment, Nature, Sustainability, Activism, Pint-Sized Professor, Biology, Littering, Oceans, Marine Life, Weather, Climate Change.
Our Environment is helpfully broken up into 5 sections, one for each of the essential elements (water, air, soil, energy, climate) with bolded vocabulary words and a glossary in the back. The book walks a fine line between educating about the element itself, and explaining in detail the threats that are facing our planet. As depressing as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is, we do need to learn about it so that the brilliant young minds today can hopefully create solutions for it.
The book really focuses on the impacts of humanity on the environment without being scary, which is important. Scaring readers into the inability to act isn’t helpful, Our Environment gives scientific information first and foremost but doesn’t needlessly use scare tactics. It ends with a look toward the future, and an empowering call to action that implores us to be stewards of the land and transform our outdoor spaces for the better. One of my favorite lines from this section stresses to the reader that the importance isn’t the size of the gesture that’s most crucial, it’s the understanding of why it’s necessary and the actual choosing to do it. Reinforcing critical thinking and putting the planet before the easiest or cheapest option is a lifestyle change, but something that needs to be learned young. This book is a great step towards that, and a brighter more sustainable future.
This book was sent to us by Owlkids Books, but all opinions are our own!
About the Author & the Illustrator:
Jacques Pasquet is a writer and storyteller. He lived among the Inuit people for more than a decade and shared their hopes and fears. Now that his busy career as a professor is behind him, he splits his time between writing and visiting schools. Jacques is the author of nearly twenty books for children in Québec and France. He lives in Montréal, Québec. For more information, visit www.jacquespasquet.com . The website is all in French!
Born in France, Yves Dumont graduated from the School of Graphic Research in Brussels in 1999, and then moved to Quebec in 2008 to pursue his art. He has illustrated more than forty books for children. He lives and works in Montreal.