book cover
Messner, Kate.
Over and Under the Pond. Illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal. Chronicle, 2017. 40 pages (978–1–4521–4542–6)

Ages 4-8

The activity above and beneath the water of a pond on which a boy and his mother are paddling a canoe as sunset approaches is distinct yet parallel in this lyrical account. Over the pond a blackbird flies with grass for her nest, a moose eats water lilies, a young goldfish is ready to fly. Under the pond, caddisfly larva makes a home in pebbles and sand, a beaver eats roots, tadpoles begin to transform into frogs. Each over/under pairing emphasizes both what the boy can see and what his mother knows about the natural world. End matter provides more information about pond ecosystems and the behavior of animals mentioned. The mixed-media illustrations on matte paper capture life above and beneath the water in strikingly composed scenes from a variety of perspectives. The boy and his mother are Black. ©2018 Cooperative Children’s Book Center

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