Balloons do come from trees—rubber trees. Told in rhyme, the story follows the wide variety of steps involved in making the air-filled decorations we all know and love. Starting with the tapping of the rubber tree, the ship that carries the liquid rubber to the factory, and the manufacturing process itself; readers will learn just how that balloon arrived at his or her house. This delightful, fun-to-read-aloud story is sure to give readers a new appreciation for balloons.
key phrases for educators: change in state of matter, production of goods (how things are made), natural resources, transportation of goods, geography
Written by Danna Smith Illustrated by Laurie Allen Klein
"Rhyming couplets and effective illustrations describe the general process by which latex is extracted from trees, converted into a colorful mix, shaped into forms, treated and sent to stores to be sold as balloons. Each double-page spread shows a separate step, watched over by what looks like a warbler with an observant eye. (Sharp-eyed observers will even see him through the red balloon on the cover.) At one point, the bird even comes close to becoming part of the process, shaking off the powder that coats each latex form after cooking. As in Smith’s Two at the Zoo (2009), the rhyming text scans well, making this a good choice for an informational read-aloud even for preschoolers."(January 2013) Kirkus Reviews
Danna Smith received excellent reviews for Pirate Nap and Two at the Zoo, which was featured in Parenting Magazine and is a Raising Readers board book special edition. The inspiration for her most recent book, Balloon Trees, came from her husband’s line of work running a rubber manufacturing plant. Although his company makes industrial rubber products, Danna chose to follow the creation of a fun product that is near and dear to a child’s heart: the balloon. She lives in Northern California with her husband, two grown children, and their cocker spaniel, Peanut. Visit her website at www.dannasmithbooks.com.