Life on Earth: The Story of Evolution

(2002) for ages 5 – 10 (secular). How have so many different forms of life developed across earth’s 4.5 billion year history? Using colorful torn-paper illustrations throughout, this book shows that some life forms are better suited to their surroundings and thus are able to survive and reproduce. “After many generations, variations and mutations can make a species larger, or more colorful, or different in some other way. Each difference is tested by natural selection: either as change makes a plant or animal better able to survive and pass on new features to its offspring or it makes survival less likely. After millions of years, accumulated small differences between one generation and the next have become big differences.” All of the illustrated creatures are named at the back of the book and, interestingly, the book includes several now extinct creatures. Children will appreciate these glimpses into the earth’s past.

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