Orangutan Hats and Other Tools Animals Use

by Richard Haynes (Author) Stephanie Laberis (Illustrator)

Orangutan Hats and Other Tools Animals Use
Reading Level: 4th – 5th Grade
Elephants that remove ticks with sticks? Otters that crack open their lunch with rocks? Crows that slide down a roof on a jar lid--over and over? Take a fascinating look at the use of tools by animals around the world. Move over, humans! We're not the only creatures who can invent and use tools to keep ourselves fed, warm, safe, healthy, comfortable--even entertained. Thanks to the careful observations of biologists working in the field, we now know that elephants use sunscreen, long-tailed macaques floss their teeth, assassin bugs use bait to lure their prey, orangutans make pillows, and crows will go sledding just for fun. Who's the clever one now, eh? Join writer Richard Haynes and illustrator Stephanie Laberis for a walk on the wild side and get ready to be astonished, delighted, and amused by this jam-packed exploration. Interested readers will find a map, an introduction, a glossary, an index, and a bibliography for further investigation.

Kirkus Reviews

Starred Review
Readers will devour this dynamic and informative explanation of the inventiveness to be found within the animal world. 

School Library Journal

Gr 3-5—Humans aren't the only ones who use tools to secure food, safety, shelter, comfort, health, and recreation. Many animals have found innovative solutions across continents. For example, orangutans use leaves as umbrellas and hats; crabs use stinging anemones to protect themselves from predators; ravens "play" catch. Biologists have discovered through observation that each tool has an important use. Informational paragraphs written by Haynes are accompanied by colorful digital art rendered and illustrated by Laberis. The gentle yet realistic illustrations flow with the text, giving readers time to absorb each particular tool type. Although the information may be overwhelming to consume in one sitting for younger readers, the chapters provide a good introduction to animals creating tools using their natural habitat. A map and table of contents are located at the front of the book. A glossary, a bibliography, and an index are included in the back matter. Similar reads include Atlas of Animal Adventures by Emily Hawkins and Tooling Around: Crafty Creatures and the Tools They Use by Ellen Jackson. VERDICT An informative and entertaining exploration of each category of tool animals use.—Hilary Tufo, Columbus Metropolitan Lib., Reynoldsburg, OH

Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

Stephanie Lebaris's comic illustrations are presented in both full and partial page spreads as well as in small circular vignettes that emphasize the types of tools the animal uses. . . the book provides an amusing browsing opportunity and could serve as a springboard to more in-depth research.
—School Library Conenction
Richard Haynes
Richard Haynes grew up on a farm in Pennsylvania, one of nine children. Every day of his boyhood was filled with adventure, much of it in the great outdoors. He is the author of the early chapter book Slingshot and Burp. Richard Haynes lives in Northern California with his wife, author Megan McDonald.

Stephanie Laberis is a character designer and illustrator who specializes in creating art for animation and children's publications. She is the illustrator of Prudence the Part-Time Cow by Jody Jensen Shaffer as well as the Grumpy Cat books and many other Little Golden Books. Stephanie Laberis lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Candlewick Press (MA)
Publication date
April 20, 2021

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