When Elephants Listen with Their Feet: Discover Extraordinary Animal Senses Reviews

Kirkus Reviews

An African elephant, rendered as a digital illustration, and a girl with brown skin walk side-by-side along a grassy path. The title of the book is When Elephants Listen with Their Feet. Written by Emmannuelle Grumndmann, illustrated by Clemence Dupont. Translated from the French original by Erin Woods.“Grundmann and Dupont highlight the ways in which various nonhuman animals display extraordinary sensory capabilities that human bodies lack….Small lessons in the science behind senses are interspersed amid the many short paragraphs about animals all over the planet. The text is graceful and often humorous, with an extensive vocabulary and fairly complex sentence structure….Overall, the book thoughtfully and exuberantly excites wonder in its readers. Sensational sensory stories.”

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School Library Journal

“This book highlights the extraordinary ways some creatures’ unique senses are highly developed. The text is organized by the five senses….The brief descriptions are clear and contain an appropriate amount of scientific terminology. Each section begins with a short introduction to the sense, usually comparing it to humans’ use of it. Text boxes feature a realistic image and are attractively laid out on the page to provide a clean, uncluttered format. An index of animals offers additional information about each creature and the corresponding page number. VERDICT A solid contribution to any elementary study of the senses.”
–Maggie Chase, Boise State Univ., ID

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Canadian Review of Materials

When Animals Listen with Their Feet is an enjoyable, informative text for children that manages to capture facts and curiosity at the same time. Using the senses as a framework, the author and illustrator take the reader on a journey through the wild kingdom by way of intriguing facts and images.

The text is informative, and the images match and complement with simple, yet true to life depictions. Children who love facts and who enjoy the animal world will find this book a pleasure to read. Teachers for grades K-4 will find this a wealthy resource for research units or writing/drawing activities.”

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YA (and Kids) Books Central

When Elephants Listen With Their Feet is a seriously cool collection of animal facts around the senses….There are some new facts that I did not know as an adult, and I love learning something new. This would be a great book for children who love to know unusual and cool facts….

A seriously awe-inspiring collection of facts about animal senses, When Elephants Listen With Their Feet is a delightful book to explore and learn. Highly recommend for older elementary school aged / middle grade readers who love cool and unusual animal facts.”

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Midwest Book Review

“Exceptionally ‘kid friendly’ in tone, commentary and presentation, When Elephants Listen With Their Feet: Discover Extraordinary Animal Senses is especially recommended for family, elementary school, middle school, and community library Wildlife picture book collections for young readers ages 8- 12.”

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Youth Services Book Review

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

What did you like about the book? This non fiction picture book shows how animals use their senses to interact with their environment, for food, mating, defense and more….I learned many facts I didn’t know, such as: the golden mole has no eyes; the Atlantic herring passes gas to communicate; the salmon can smell under water; a blue whale’s tongue weighs 3 tons; and birds have no nerve endings in their feet….

The text is conversational and informative without being didactic – I would say that this French translation is very successful. Charming realistic illustrations complement the text, and I appreciate that most of the humans in the book have non-white skin, which is rare in non fiction. There are indexes at the end, so this book can be used for elementary school animal reports. This is a great book to sample bit by bit to learn fascinating animal facts.

Anything you didn’t like about it? No

To whom would you recommend this book? For ages 8-12, especially kids who love fun animal facts….

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes, if you are looking for a fresh source on animal senses.”
Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA

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The International Educator

“A 40 page picture book, it has attractive art and lots of text boxes to encourage curious, budding biologists. From fish that pass gas to communicate to the taste buds of pigs and everything in between, this book is full of fascinating facts about senses.”

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Sal’s Fiction Addiction

“The tone of the text is conversational, the design well-organized and eye-catching, and the information provided is often quite remarkable. Initially organized according to the senses, the text then moves on to describe vibrations, electromagnetism, and the final part of the book deals with ‘superhero animals’. This gives readers a look at some pretty spectacular ways that animals have adapted to their environment….An animal index provides further tidbits of info and page numbers for each to allow readers to return to reread the parts of the book that hold specific interest.”

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San Francisco Book Review

“Emmanuelle Grundmann has found a new way to help kids learn lots of new, fascinating facts about a wide variety of critters. She looks at how animals use their five senses to help them navigate, communicate, hunt, stay safe, and more….Facts are laid out in text blocks with wonderful drawings by Clémence Dupont to support the text. This is a picture book for older youngsters, second through fifth grade. It is fascinating and fun. Don’t miss it.”

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Mr. Alex’s Bookshelf

“Not an encyclopedia, but maybe an illustrated primer on some of the wild and interesting things animals can do with their senses, WELWTF has an abundance of information for budding scientists to pour over should they want to engage in some animal exploration.

There is no discernible story, and only a very loose organizational structure (e.g. Superhero Animals, Good Vibrations, On the Nose, etc.) yet, the book’s charming illustrations do lure you in and the accompanying text does provide interesting, if not perfunctory data:”

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Jill’s Book Blog

Rating: ★★★★★ This picture book is about the amazing things that animals can do with their bodies. It goes through all five senses (sight, hearing, taste, touch, and smell) and the unique ways that animals use the senses to interact with the world around them.

I didn’t know most of these fun animal facts before reading this book, so I found it fascinating. I think adults and children will enjoy this beautiful picture book!”

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