There is a Tree is a perfect book to introduce children to how magically nature seems to come alive when you sit silently for a few minutes. Animals, bugs, plants, and activity you didn’t notice at a glance becomes obvious and surprising.
If you have tried this activity with young children, as soon as they start seeing animals or other things, they will shout out, “Oh, look at what I see!” and the magic is gone. Then they have to try to be quiet and let it all happen again.
In this story, someone we never really see, has already climbed a tree and sits silently to let nature activity unfold above, beneath, and all around him or her. We only see the shoes up high in the tree, and never see the child climb down, except as a small shadow heading home. Amazing things begin to happen, and the author writes around the pictures to capture how the child must be looking around. A ladybug, nuthatch, squirrel, robin, bunny, fox, beaver, butterfly, and more are all seen slightly camouflaged . . . even a skunk!
The child seems to stay in the tree all day because it becomes night by the end of the book. Here is the invitation to other children to also silently observe nature when the book ends with, “Will you tell me what YOU see?”