Teaching Process Skills with Children’s Literature: Saguaro Moon


        “Planet Scouts is a club for kids who like to study nature.
We always keep a nature journal. I started this new
journal to record all the desert life I discover.
I bring it with me whenever I go exploring!”

Explore Arizona’s Sonoran Desert through Megan’s journal in Saguaro Moon: A Desert Journal, written and illustrated by Kristin Joy Pratt-Serafini. While being quite kid-friendly, Saguaro Moon also offers a ton of great facts about many desert animals and plants. This book is full of lots of scientific names, measurements, and beautiful watercolor paintings.

Curriculum Connections
This book would be a valuable tool in introducing students to scientific journals. In Megan’s journal, she classifies the organisms she comes across in the desert initially by common name, scientific name, and size/length using two different units of measurement (5.1 b,c) Sometimes Megan makes Fact Cards in her journal about a plant or animals’ habitat, diet, range, measurements, and tips on how to interact with them (5.1d, 6.1c)  She will point out the slight differences between closely-related species (6.1a), and she even clears up some common misconceptions. What a great way to introduce students to scientific observation and classification!

Additional Resources

  • Planet Scouts! You can become a Planet Scout too! Learn how to keep your own journal and read about the adventures of other Planet Scouts. The Mission of the Planet Scouts is to bring literature, art and environmental science together in a way that encourages direct, meaningful interaction between people and their natural surroundings.
  • Saguaro Cactus Seek and Find! Discover cool facts while comparing the plants, animals, and people of the Sonoran Desert with those of the Central Australian Deserts.
  • Explore the Desert ThinkQuest! Learn about the geography of deserts, animal adaptations, characteristics of desert plants, and the future of the deserts! You can even take a quiz to test your knowledge.

General Information

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