Stars Beneath Your Bed: The Surprising Story of Dust

by April Pulley Sayre and Ann Jonas

Poetry and science grace one another in a lyrical picture book about dust. Sayre’s... read more

Poetry and science grace one another in a lyrical picture book about dust. Sayre’s narrative begins with reference to a fire-painted sky in the morning—the result of dust in the atmosphere scattering light. It ends by describing the pink, orange, and red palette of sunset—also the result of dust. In between, she examines many of the ways dust is created: dirt flies when we ride our bikes, when a meerkat digs, when cheetahs chase gazelles; cotton rubs off our jeans and becomes dust; so does the smoke from burning toast or the eyelash of a seal. “Old dust stays around . . . That dusty film on your computer screen / might have muddied a dinosaur.” And there is dust that comes from outer space: “The dust beneath your bed might be from Mars . . . or a bit of the moon.” Who knew? Dust may be small, but Sayre invites readers to consider it as an extraordinary element in the grand scheme of nature. Additional information about dust is provided in a short prose narrative at the end of the book that provides additional scientific information about dust and expands on information referenced in the poetic text. Ann Jonas’s bright water-color illustrations are a simple, strong backdrop for the words. (Ages 5–8)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2006

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