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I absolutely loved reading Pebbles and the Biggest Number by Joey Benun. The storyline follows Pebbles, a beautiful and curious butterfly. After flying through his garden day after day, Pebbles realizes that there must be more numbers than his own two eyes, four wings, six legs, and forty-two flowers. Upon this realization he sets out to find the biggest number in the world, stopping along the way for readers to learn scientific fun facts. For example, Pebbles first flies to the desert, where he meets a camel amongst the sand. After asking this camel what the biggest number in the world is, the camel informs him that the biggest number he knows is twenty-seven million, the temperature of the sun above. Along the margins of the page, Benun includes a “Science Spot” where the reader can learn an interesting fact about the sun. This style of formatting continues for the rest of this storybook, as Pebbles travels to rainforests, beaches, oceans, mountains, and even space to find the answer to his question – What is the biggest number in the world?
I think the formatting of this children’s book sets it apart as stellar. There is a perfect balance of extra “fun fact” type information to the plot line, where little ones will not easily get distracted or confused. I also loved how these extra tidbits were incorporated into the stunning illustrations! For example, when Pebbles flew over the ocean, Laura Watson cleverly had this additional information about seagulls and clouds on the page. I loved how creative and playful her technique continued, in addition to all of her illustrations of Pebbles within the scene itself. Brightly colored, with plenty of detail, and friendly-looking characters, she did a fantastic job of making this children’s book fun to page through.
As a final note, I loved how versatile Pebbles and the Biggest Number is for the classroom, or just for at-home readers. With a focus on both math and science, this book could work perfectly as a read-aloud for teachers or librarians who want to emphasize STEM. The book is written with the information flowing naturally with the plot line. It could be used as a great tool to help children with numerical skills and general scientific knowledge.
Overall, I would highly recommend this book to parents or educators who are teaching numbers and science, especially those who want to do so in a fun, colorful way!
Reviewed by: Theresa Kadair
Author: Joey Benun
Star count: 5/5
Page count: 48 pages
Publish Date: January 24, 2023
Buy This Book: Amazon
Issue: April 2023