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The Burgess Animal Book for Children

Thornton W. Burgess

Book Overview: 

Peter Rabbit goes to school, with Mother Nature as his teacher. In this zoology book for children, Thornton W. Burgess describes the mammals of North America in the form of an entertaining story, including plenty of detail but omitting long scientific names. There is an emphasis on conservation.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Chuck might make a nest on the ground the way Mrs. Peter and Mrs. Jumper do," replied Jumper meekly.

"No, siree!" replied Johnny. "Our babies are born in that little underground bedroom, and they stay down in the ground until they are big enough to hunt for food for themselves."

"How many do you usually have?" inquired Chatterer the Red Squirrel.

"Six or eight," replied Johnny Chuck. "Mrs. Chuck and I believe in large families."

"Do you eat nuts like the rest of our family?" inquired
Striped Chipmunk.

"No," replied Johnny Chuck. "Give me green food every time. There is nothing so good as tender sweet clover and young grass, unless it be some of those fine vegetables Farmer Brown grows in his garden"

Peter Rabbit nodded his head very emphatically as if he quite agreed.

"I suppose you are what is called a veg. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I am reading this with my 5-year-old animal loving son. We are having so much fun reading it. He begs me to read more & more. We have both learned so much from it & can't wait to read more of Burgess' books. After each chapter we rush to the computer to look up pictures & more info on the animals we

Read first in 2019-2020 with a second grader, reading it through a second time with my next second grader. Overall great information and told less like a textbook and more like a living book - but still somewhat dry. The first 13/14 chapters can be very repetitive to a child eager for the "big anima

4 stars & 4/10 hearts. I grew up on the Burgess books. <3 My mother read this one to me & my siblings for school and since then I've often reread it. This fall I read it aloud to my siblings--12, 10, 7, & 5. We all loved it! Some of this information is dated, but if does give you a good base of know

“Now we will close school. I hope you have enjoyed learning as much as I have enjoyed teaching, and I hope that what you have learned will be of use to you as long as you live. The more knowledge you possess the better fitted for your part in the work of the Great World you will be. Don’t forget tha

Definitely a living book- a fun way to introduce your children to the many, MANY different creatures in North America. It covers a lot of ground quickly, so if you're looking for in-depth details of different animals, this isn't what you're looking for. However, if you're looking for an engaging way

Great book of knowledge

Contains a fair amount of negative reference to hunters, which I chose to omit while reading aloud to my children. Still the book is full of wonderful information about all the mammals that live in North America.

Fantastic book of nature lore pertaining to North American animals. Accessible and well written. I dare say I liked it even better than his Bird Book. (AmblesideOnline year 2 book)

4.5 stars. Seems like Burgess books have to grow on me. At first I am always a little put off by the whole "lessons-through-talking-animals" thing. But by the end I really enjoyed this one and my kids (ages 10 and 8) loved it.

Although I've posted this review on the readily accessible Dover reprint of this children’s literature classic, that’s not actually the version The Eight-Year-Old is reading.

I generally love the Dover reprints. Most of our Burgess books are from the Dover collection. But in the case of The Burgess

I grant that this is a living book, but I just didn't enjoy it very much. The Burgess books cover a LOT of ground, almost too much to really retain much. It was usually one of my daughter's favorite school books at any given time, but she had trouble narrating it. I will try something different for

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