How often do we find a picture book that combines rhyme with genetics? Hmmmm….never! Until now.
Why aren’t you fuzzy like a dog,
or buzzy like a bee?
Why can’t you eat ants with your nose,
or breathe beneath the sea?
Questions lead to questions until we start getting answers:
Now when you think of life that grows
with leaves or fur or wings,
cells are the tiny building blocks
of all earth’s living things.
And in the center of each cell,
too small for eyes to see,
there lie detailed instructions
for what it’s supposed to be.
Cue the standing ovation for Rajani’s smooth, rhyming text explaining the science behind DNA and what makes us US in a way that kids can absorb!
Back matter includes just the right amount of additional information about genetics and a BONUS Banana DNA experiment that allows kids to synthesize and see DNA up close and personal. Steven Salerno’s energetic and colorful illustrations add to the fun of learning. A great resource for parents and teachers!
Do the DNA experiment from the back of the book.
Make two different lists of traits that you share with each of your parents, such as eye, hair, or skin color; whether you can curl your tongue in the shape of a tube; whether cilantro tastes like soap to you; or whether your thumbs are double-jointed. Can you see how you get different traits from each of your parents? Are there any traits that you share with a grandparent that may have skipped your parent?
Title: The Secret Code Inside You: All About Your DNA
Author: Rajani LaRocca
Illustrator: Steven Salerno
Publisher: Little Bee, 2021
Themes: STEM, DNA, personal agency
Ages: Elementary school
For more perfect picture book recommendations, please visit Susanna Hill’s website.