Introduce Environmental Topics to Children Using the Picture Book "Fog"

Updated on June 19, 2017
chewtt2 profile image

Cindy Hewitt is a retired teacher with a passion for children's literature. Read-aloud stories add quality to a child's life experiences.

A Beautiful Picture Book with Insights for Saving Our Planet

Kyo Maclear's charming new picture book Fog is an enchanting way to introduce changes in our climate to young children. Does your child notice changes in weather or the environment in his/her neighborhood? Warbler, a small yellow bird, lives in Icyland. He likes to watch people. The environment changes for Warbler one day when a thick fog rolls in. His friends do not notice the fog or the other changes around the environment. A little girl comes into view, and she also notices the fog. She and Warbler want to find others that also see the fog. They wonder if the fog is going to stay. The little girl and Warbler come up with a surprising and creative way to communicate with others about the fog.

Maclear's Fog is a beautifully illustrated picture book that introduces the topic of global warming and the changes in our environment. Young children are always fascinated with weather, and Maclear's story can be used to open a discussion about observing changes in the environment.

Fog was published by Tundra Books, a division of Penguin/Random House. It is recommended for ages 4-8 and has an ISBN of 978-1-77049-492-3.

Picture Book Can Introduce Climate Change to Young Children

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Warbler's icy environment is changing
Warbler's icy environment is changing
Warbler's icy environment is changing

Meet the Author and Illustrator

Kyo Maclear is an award-winning author for both children and adults. She enjoys creating picture books, and her Good Little Book was on a shortlist for receiving the Governor General's Award. Her first novel for adults, The Letter Opener, was the recipient of the K. M. Hunter Artists Award. She lives in Toronto and can be frequently seen in bookstores.

Kenard Pak contributed his talents as an illustrator for Maclear's Fog. His illustrations are done in pastels and are a major part of this beautiful picture book. He is very familiar with fog because he lives in San Francisco.

Creative Author and Illustrator

Creative inside book jacket to introduce author and illustrator
Creative inside book jacket to introduce author and illustrator

Kenard Pak's Pastel Illustrations Add to the Story

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Warbler's friends do not notice the fog that rolled inThe little girl and Warbler find a creative way to communicate with others about the fogThe fog finally clears and everyone can see
Warbler's friends do not notice the fog that rolled in
Warbler's friends do not notice the fog that rolled in
The little girl and Warbler find a creative way to communicate with others about the fog
The little girl and Warbler find a creative way to communicate with others about the fog
The fog finally clears and everyone can see
The fog finally clears and everyone can see

Extending the Learning With Environmental Education Lessons

It is never too early to begin environmental education for our children. Early childhood educators believe that young children should be introduced to nature and how to care for our planet at an early age. Children can learn about their environment with a variety of hands-on experiences. Life experiences and interaction with their environment helps to develop an appreciation for their planet. Children should be taught respect and ways to care for their own natural environment. Simple and positive life experiences such as planting a garden in the backyard can be the beginning for children as young as toddlers.

Care for the environment can start in your own backyard. Grass, trees, and insects can all be found in the backyard. Children gravitate toward bugs and the concept that bugs can help in cleaning the environment can be introduced. Bird feeders, windsocks and rocks can also be found in one's own backyard. Wind socks bring an awareness of wind in nature. Parents and teachers can provide tools such as a magnifying glass, buckets, shovels for digging and planting, and even measuring tools for watering plants. Sensory experiences also teach appreciation for the environment.

Parents can model care for the environment by teaching children to recycle and use materials in different ways. Even toddlers can participate in sorting your materials to be recycled.

Encourage young children to notice changes in the weather. Maclear's Fog can be a beautiful stepping stone to help young children notice climate change.

Geography lessons can also be a part of opening a discussion on protecting our environment. The pastel illustration of the ice in Fog can introduce children to the lands where ice bergs are present.

*Lesson in creating fog

A simple way for children to experience climate change creates fog can be done with ice cubes and a tea kettle. Melt ice cubes into liquid. Call attention to the cold of the cubes before melting and the temperature of the water after melting the cubes. Pour the water into a tea kettle and heat until steam rises. Instant fog!

Young Children and Learning to Care for the Earth

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Questions & Answers


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      • chewtt2 profile imageAUTHOR

        Cindy Hewitt 

        2 years ago from Sarasota

        Hi, Rachel;

        Thanks for reading this review. actually, the pictures in the book are very pretty in watercolor-pastels-might be considered drab by some-but the book is actually beautiful. I love the pastel watercolor pictures. The author lives in Canada. Thanks for sharing the review.

      • Rachel Horon profile image

        Rachel Horon 

        2 years ago from Indiana

        I have never heard of this book, and I might not have picked it out because of the drab colors. It is a good story to book talk and introduce to children who would pick out the bright covers first. Like a message in a bottle, this gets the word out to everyone, especially children, about the impact we have on the environment. Thank you for sharing it!


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