Reading/Interest Level: Primary
Author: Herman Parish
Illustrator: Lynne Avril
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Amelia Bedelia loves playing on her swing set in the backyard as part of her daily routine. But before she knows it, there’s a big problem—robins are building a nest right on top of the slide! At first, Amelia Bedelia wants to get rid of the nest and scare the birds away, but when her mom explains there could soon be a little bird family, she decides it’d be better to wait and see what happens. She even gathers twigs, leaves, grass, felt, and yarn to assist the birds with their nest-building. As expected, the birds rebuild their nest and watch over it protectively for weeks. Soon there are eggs and then little baby birds! Instead of playing on the swing set, Amelia Bedelia begins a new routine of watching these four birds grow up, and even though it is sad to see them eventually leave the nest and fly away, it was a wonderful learning experience which she then shared with her friends at school.
In this humorous and educational book, Amelia Bedelia, like most kids, starts off focused mainly on herself. However, when she chooses the more selfless route, there is immediately a lesson in respecting nature and enjoying a keen observation of the world. This book also has the potential to educate children about nature and the habitat and life cycles of birds. As for the illustrations, they are completely satisfying—they are bright, colorful, clear, situated differently on each page to keep interest, and enhancing to the storyline. The text is also perfect for new readers in clear black font against a white background, and even the lines are perfectly tailored to flow as sentences should. This is an excellent book in a wonderful series and a great way to teach young children how to read!