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Rattlesnake Rules

Rattlesnake Rules

By: Conrad J. Storad 
Illustrated by: Nathaniel P. Jensen
Publisher: Little Five Star, A Division of Five Star Publications 
ISBN: 978-1589851610 
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler 
Review Date: September 2009

We all have rules to live by, but not all of them are written down. Sometimes you learn by example and this is probably most evident in the animal world. If you pay close attention you’ll learn all about the rattlesnake and what their Mama tells them. She shakes her rattle and calls to her young to gather round to teach them some very important life lessons. Four little rattlers slither and slide down the rocks to listen to her lessons. Of course one of the first things she told them was that rattlers are beautiful. She described the shape of their heads and told them that they had great vision. Not all rattlesnakes look alike, but she did say they all have “fangs and venom” and think mice make for great snacks. Hsssssss! Mmmmm!

“Mama taught them rules for hunting.
She showed them how to play. 
She taught her babies rules for eating 
To help them survive each day. 
‘Rattlers hunt both night and day,’ she said. 
‘Cool days, warm nights are best. 
But when the weather gets really cold,
We coil in our dens to rest.’”

When she was teaching them how to hunt they squiggled and squirmed as they practiced attacking some fake mice. AND they used blindfolds and only used their pits to detect the heat of those mice. Those mouths were opened so wide they looked like they were yawning. There were so many things to learn if they were to survive. One of the critical things they had to learn was how to use their rattles to warn other creatures to stay away from them. ZZZZZZZZZ! Do you think you’d start walking or running away if you heard that sound when you were out walking?

This is a very well done story in rhyme about the life of the rattlesnake. The book relays a lot of information in a storybook format that makes it very easy for the young reader to learn without trying. Reluctant readers usually gravitate toward vibrant material like this because it is easier to absorb and get to the end without getting stuck on the first couple of pages. The artwork compliments this work perfectly with its bright colors and fun, animated rattlers. In the back of the book are factual sections about rattlesnakes and some suggested curriculum-based activities.

Quill says: This book would be a zzzzzzz perfect book to read and discuss in the homeschool or classroom setting!

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