Tag Archives: Sneed B. Collard

Happy Father’s Day

21 Jun

DAD

My dad’s name is Earl. Here we are in the late 60’s. Dad is obviously in the centre. I am on the left and my twin sister, Andrea is on the right. We might have just woken Dad up from a nap, during which we put a teddy bear beside him and a blankie over him. I wonder now if he was awake the whole time we were doing that.

I won’t get to see Dad this year. I was planning on calling him this morning, but he fell and broke his hip a few days ago. He had surgery yesterday. He is 83 and has Alzheimers and I am feeling more than a little worried. If you are someone who prays, please put in a word for his recovery.

Since it is Father’s Day, I’m sure that most of you would agree that Atticus Finch is THE best Dad in literature. And when I think of Atticus Finch, I see Gregory Peck.

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Another great Dad, who loved unconditionally and did a lot with very little was Danny’s Dad, William, in Roald Dahl’s  Danny the Champion of the World. 

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This is a Dahl book that doesn’t get read as much as the others, but is definitely worth reading.

And how about the  Knuffle Bunny  Dad by Mo Willems? That man has the patience of Job.

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Or the Dad in Jane Yolen’s Owl Moon?

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Sneed B. Collard III takes a different twist with Animal Dads.

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What are your favorite Dad books?

Birdwatching

14 May

Yesterday, while walking the dogs, a Northern Flicker hopped across the sidewalk less than a meter in front of the girls. The girls, attentively sniffing the grass, barely noticed, but I marveled.

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I marveled, too, reading  Fire Birds:  Valuing Natural Wildfires and Burned Forests by Sneed B. Collard.

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The photographs captured my attention first, as I saw this book sitting on the shelf of my local public library. Full page photos of fire scenes contrast with close-ups of the birds who help rebuild the forest after the fire.

The opening chapter, “Inferno!”, quickly drew me in. Written in the present tense, it describes a forest fire from the initial strike of lightning to the vast wasteland left behind. It suggests that the forest might not be quite as devastated as it seems. The chapters that follow explain how birds use burn areas. We learn that more than fifteen kinds of birds prefer to nest in burned forests. Here they can find an abundance of food and places for shelter, often in the absence of predators.

 Fire Birds explores the complex  life of a forest after a fire. It contains many features of non-fiction that can be used as models with students including a powerful introduction, a table of contents, index, glossary, text boxes featuring different birds, and interesting headings.

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