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Gilles Brillon
Illustrated by Doris Barrette; translated by Christina Richards, $10.95 Waterloo (Que.), Quintin Publishers, 1994. 80pp, paper
ISBN 2-89435-010-4. CIP

Grades 3-7 / Ages 8-12

Reviewed by Peter Croskery

Volume 22 Number 6
1994 November / December

As one would expect, Discovering Insects follows closely the format of Brillon's previous publication, Discovering Spiders, Snails and Other Creepy Crawlies. And, once again, the delightful and precise illustrations of Doris Barrette complement the text. Brillon has divided his book into four principal sections, each dealing with a parti-cular insect family: Orthoptera (grasshoppers and crickets), Homoptea (aphids), Hymenop-tera (ants), and Diptera (house flies and fruit flies). For each, there is an identification card, which is a very detailed illustration of the particular insect under study. Following the Identification Card is a series of activities designed to utilize the species being examined. In all instances, Brillon reminds the reader to be respectful of the living organism being handled.

A nice feature of the book is the activity guide pictograms. These rate each activity as to whether it can be done indoors or outside, whether the assistance of an adult is required, and how long doing the activity will take, all in visuals. The appropriate pictograms are included with each of the activities. At the end of the book, Brillon provides a chart summa-rizing all of the activities by pictogram. Also appended is a listing of additional reading that adults working with children will find very useful.

Reasonably priced, nicely packaged and presented, and possessing good hands-on activities, this book is good value. It would be most suitable for eight- to twelve-year-olds, who could read and follow the clearly written activity instructions.

Peter Croskery in Grimsby, Ontario, is a biologist, freelance writer and instructor specializing in environmental issues

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