Pollination is critical in the modern food chain for humans and animals, and this book explains the process in a simple, memorable fashion. The book’s cover and first pages give credit to animal and insect pollinators like lemurs, bats, butterflies, and dragonflies but mostly focus on different kinds of bees, starting with a well-designed spiral chart that shows 22 different types of bees, labeled and arranged by size.
Cheney continues, using rhyming verse to boil down pollination and bees’ role in it to the essentials. She clearly explains points that can be tricky to young children, like why the bees “help us”: “Bees help because,/ the food that feeds them,/ is found inside flowers/ on branches and stems!”
The coordination of visuals and text is outstanding, with Overton’s colorful, up-close depictions of flowers, or bees at work, unobtrusively labeled on the illustration. The interior illustrations are repeated in thumbnail size in the book-end glossary, each accompanied by more detailed definitions or general facts related to the image.
As a bonus, Cheney provides a short song with sheet music—a tribute to flowers, farmers, and bees. Suggestions and resource list also help parents and teachers incorporate the book into science curriculums.
An excellent beginners’ science guide, Food in the Flowers offers an enjoyable way for readers of all ages to learn and better appreciate the wonders of nature.