March 28, 2012


By Mary R. Dunn

Pebble Plus, Capstone, 2012

Nocturnal Animals Series

ISBN #9781429666497

Grades PreK-2


“At night, fireflies rise from bushes and grass. These nocturnal beetles blink their lights in the darkness.”

Warm summer nights lit by fireflies in the deepening dusk is a favorite childhood memory. Even now, I stop to marvel at the blinking lights of these fascinating beetles. What a wonderful way to introduce young readers to nonfiction!

Fireflies explains the life habits and life cycle of these blinking insects in a controlled vocabulary. It introduces terms relating to fireflies as a nocturnal insect but does so in the context so early readers can understand the meaning.

Large, close-up photos provide a good look at these insects, and the one of a female laying eggs is particularly interesting. The back matter includes a glossary, read more section, internet sites, and an index. The front cover is appealing with a lit firefly on it and makes the book appealing as a nonfiction choice. The book covers aspects of the Core Curriculum for informational texts with its map and close-up images and good back matter.

This book covers a terrific topic for beginning readers and is a great introduction to nonfiction reading. The timely approach to summer and these lovely reminders of summer evenings makes it a perfect seasonal book.


Use the information in the book to draw and label the life cycle of a firefly. Add to the diagram by showing the food eaten at various stages of development. Don’t forget to show the bioluminescence!

The Texas A&M site has firefly information.

Here is a good example of a larva.

This site gives a brief description of the firefly life cycle.

This site has good background about fireflies.

National Science Standards: structure and function; growth and development of organisms

Book provided by Capstone


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