The Beavers' Busy Year

School Library Journal - June 2014

Busy Year gives a description of beaver activities through the seasons. It has more text than the first book and includes multiple facts, making it ideal for reports for the upper end of the grade range. It has a lot of full-color photographic close-ups of beaver life, perfect for browsing.-Susan E. Murray, formerly at Glendale Public Library, AZ

Booklist - July 2014

The text is rich in facts and is perfectly complemented with full-page color photographs of beavers on the move. A reproducible “creative minds” section in the back matter poses higher-order critical inquiries based on extra factual text and photographic clues. As a learning resource, the book is standards-aligned and ready-made for crosscurricular studies. Proof positive that nonfiction for emergent readers can be equal parts attractive, informative, and entertaining. — Erin Anderson

Horn Book Guide

Illustrated with full-double-spread color photographs, this is a lively exploration of beaver life. Holland reveals a wealth of information about these animals and the ways in which they are well-adapted to their unusual lives: e.g., their "see-through eyelids that serve as goggles" and hind-foot toenails used to "remove splinters from between their teeth." Denser additional information is appended.

Library Media Connection

Children love to learn about animals, and a real life photograph is very much appreciated by a young eye. Holland is a naturalist and nature photographer, and the book’s facts are double-checked by a naturalist at the Squam Lakes Natural Science Center. The publisher has provided free online teaching activities with pictures and quizzes. Overall, the layout is very clear, making it easier for young readers to follow. The life of a beaver is covered including being a mammal, having see-through eyelids, building a lodge, and grooming. Helpful to educators is For Creative Minds, in which text and photos may be photocopied. Missy Van Dusen, Librarian, Lubbock, Texas RECOMMENDED

NSTA Recommends - June 2014

The Beavers’ Busy Year is filled with beautiful photography of the animal in action. Inset pictures illustrate a point or provide a close–up like the beavers’ split toenails on its hind feet. The Creative Minds section at the back of the book may be copied for educational purposes and provides extended information about the beaver. Signs of a beaver’s presence, including types of lodges and their amazing work as habitat engineers, are featured. Additional content is also available online, including quizzes.

Science Books and Films - May 2014

The Beavers' Busy Year is a great, developmentally appropriate book for children. It can be used as a reference book for children as it contains an abundant amount of factual information on beavers. Every page contains realistic photographs of beavers in their environment and includes sharp macro photographs as well. As if the easy-to-read, yet descriptive content was not enough, the back of the book includes several pages of activities and a link to access additional information. It is a wonderful nonfiction book to add to any children's science library about beavers, nature's engineers.--Christina Conti, Liberty Science Center,, Jersey City, NJ

San Francisco Book Review/Kids Book Review - May 2014

This book is about beavers and what they do. There are a lot of interesting facts in “The Beavers’ Busy Year”.  I learned that beavers have see-through eyelids that work like goggles when they swim underwater.  I also learned that beavers have webbed feet. The book tells what beavers do every season. This book is very interesting.

There is a section in the back of the book called ‘For Creative Minds’.  A lot of information is included in this part of the book.  The section in the back of the book explains and shows pictures of beaver signs.  My brother, mom and I saw a beaver today. After reading the book, we went hiking to look for signs of beavers and saw a few beaver lodges, foot prints and a tree that had incisor bite marks in it. I like this book and I hope you like it to! I think it should be rated three and a half stars. I like the really cute photos.
Reviewed by Maggie, Age 9

Children's Literary Classics-July 2014

A Beaver's Busy Year is an excellent, and quite informative, book about beavers that will satisfy the inquisitive minds of even the most insatiable young reader. Engaging and educational, this book has a lot to offer without feeling "text-book-ish."  Author Mary Holland has left no stone unturned in regards to the fascinating lives of this elusive creature.

Home School Book Review Blog - March 2014

"Children love to learn about different kinds of animals. In A Beaver’s Busy Year, the informative text and the gorgeous, full-color photographs, all by Mary Holland, provide a lot of interesting facts about beavers and how they live. These fascinating creatures were once hunted almost to extinction for their fur which was used to make men’s hats. The “For Creative Minds” section in the back has additional material on beaver signs, how beavers engineer their dams, and their relationship to other pond wildlife."

Feathered Quill Book Review - March 2014

This is a marvelous photographic journal of beavers and how they live. One of the most appealing things about this book, of course, are the actual photographs that follow beavers through a season. There is an occasional oval sidebar that will add something of interest to the text. For example, when we see a lodge, there is one that shows an artist’s rendition of a slice of one so we can peek inside. Newly independent readers can tackle this beginning nonfiction book with a bit of assistance with unusual words such as “splinters.” In the back of the book are several activities that can be downloaded and printed from the publisher’s website. This would be an excellent book to read and discuss in the homeschool or classroom setting.

Batch of Books - March 2014

This book gives children an inside look at a beaver's life. Have you ever wondered what's inside a beaver dam? What do beavers eat all winter? How many babies they have in a litter? This educational book answers these questions and more. It is informative and interesting, yet short enough for even young preschoolers to enjoy. The photography is beautiful and adds to the visual interest of the book.  There are a couple pages of good information and beaver facts at the end of the book for kids that want to know more.

Sally's Bookshelf - March 2014

Natural historian Mary Holland takes us into the lives of beavers through a year of seasons. We learn about their teeth - and how they use them to gnaw down trees for their building projects. We learn about their special see-through goggly eyes and their strong webbed feet. We see them get ready for winter and emerge with kits in the spring. And we even learn the secrets of how beavers get wood splinters out from between their teeth.

MyMCBooks Blog - March 2014

Interesting read for animal lovers. Learn to spot a Beaver at bank lodge, floating food leftovers, chewed bark, beaver dam and more.  The author’s photos are vibrant and help tells the story. I highly recommend this book for classroom teaching.

Reader's Haven Reviews - April 2014

This book is a very informative book all about beavers. It teaches about how important beavers are to our habitat. 

Beavers are a keystone specie. Keystone species by definition  means that many different plants and animals depend on beaver ponds and wetlands for their survival. These aquatic animals are busy all year long, They are smart animals who know what they need for survival. Beavers make their lodge in unique way to keep predators away. 

This book has real life photographs through out it. I recommend this book for anyone who is an animal lover. 

Bookloons - June 2014

Whether you are a teacher or parent, you'll find that this beautifully illustrated book with full page, color photographs will be the perfect way to make your students or child appreciate the role beavers play in nature.

The informative text explains the significance of each photo and there are six activity pages at the end of the book that will further engage the reader. If you go camping where beavers may be at work, use this book ahead of time so your child will understand what is happening inside the beaver lodge and also how it was created.

You'll find this is an excellent introduction to the life of a beaver and a book your child will enjoy reading again and again.

Learning Table Reviews - June 2014

My kids and I see beavers often where we live, and this book gave us the opportunity to peek inside their habitat. We've often wondered what their lodge looks like inside, and The Beavers' Busy year shows us that and more. My son enjoys keeping this book beside him when he draws in his nature journal so he can see the details he's trying to capture. With the information in the "For Creative Minds" section, this book is almost a field guide to beavers.