IMG_1070How much do you know about the puzzling platypus?

Title: Platypus

Written by: Sue Whiting

Illustrated by: Mark Jackson

Candlewick Press, 2016, nonfiction

Suitable for ages: 5+

Themes/topics: animals, nature, Australia

Beyond the snaking bend in the creek, where the water lazes in a still green pool, a scraggly gum tree perches on the edge of the bank. Its tangle of roots clings desperately to the earth, a catcher’s mitt for fallen leaves and broken-off branches.
Cleverly hidden behind this mesh of debris is the entrance to a burrow, and poking out of this burrow is a wide duck-like bill. But the bill doesn’t belong to a duck.

Brief synopsis
(from This new edition to the Nature Storybooks series is about one of Australia’s most puzzling and unique animals – the platypus. Platypus leaves his burrow in the riverbank and dives into the cool green pool. It is dusk and he is hungry. Platypus is always busy, always moving, looking for his next meal. Follow platypus as he plays, swims, dives and scurries around his riverbank home.

Activities and Resources:
Classroom ideas from Walker Books 

Why I like this book:
Platypus is packed full of interesting information about a very strange animal, but the book never feels like an informational text. The rich lyrical descriptions of the animal and habitat are accompanied by sidebars providing scientific details. The platypus’s world comes alive in the illustrations and language as the author slowly reveals the features of this puzzling creature and follows it through its day. Several other “Nature Storybooks” are available in the series as well.

Visit author Susanna Hill’s Perfect Picture Books for a plethora of picture books listed by title and topic/theme, each with teacher/parent resources.


9 thoughts on “Platypus

  1. And now I’m wondering what the plural of platypus is. I’d love to think it’s platypi, but truly thought it was platypuses, similar to Octopuses. But the correct term is platypodes. Isn’t that awesome?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is awesome – of course just when you think you’ve found the pattern in English, it doesn’t fit – ha! No wonder the author wrote the story with just one platypus! Thanks for sharing that interesting tidbit!
      (so would the singular of nematodes be nematus?)

      Liked by 1 person

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