What Does A Caterpillar Do?

What Does Series

Children - Grade K-3rd
32 Pages
Reviewed on 09/07/2020
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Author Biography

I am a trained graphic designer and creative writer based in Victoria, BC. I have been imagining stories for as long as I can remember but, as a small child, struggled to read and write due to dyslexia. My early struggles with reading and writing are part of the reason I wanted to create a series of books which give children confidence to read. These days I don’t have the same struggles but they did leave me with a vivid imagination which I use to ‘live my stories’, even before they are written out on paper.

The What Does Series started as a simple game that I played with my son as I was driving him to daycare. He enjoyed the game so much that I jotted it down and read it to him again that evening. Seeing the way he joyfully reacted to the story was so wonderful I decided to turn it into a book – just for him. Around a year later a friend saw the book and suggested I write another and get it published.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite

What Does A Caterpillar Do? What Does Series is a non-fiction educational picture book for children, grades K-3, written by David McArthur and illustrated by Lucy Rogers. Through a series of questions, the author directs young readers to consider what a caterpillar actually does. He takes them through questions whose answers are fairly obvious to adult readers but may help young readers learn about caterpillars and the other insects they are apt to discover outdoors. And while most will agree that a caterpillar does not “light our way at night” or build webs to capture unwary flies, they will enjoy the question and answer opportunities the author provides as they read along.

David McArthur’s What Does A Caterpillar Do? introduces the marvels of nature in a story that quizzes the reader for their knowledge of what a caterpillar does. I loved the progression of questions and especially appreciated artist Lucy Rogers’ stunning illustrations. Each panel shows an array of insects complete with facial expressions. Her firefly panels are grand, showing a vast pine forest under a star-studded sky and crescent moon, with a lantern-bearing caterpillar and a friendly firefly on one page, and two children chasing fireflies on the following page. Each question sets the reader up for another adventure into the mysteries and marvels of nature. McArthur’s book is perfect for storytime, but it’s especially suitable for a new reader to try on their own. What Does A Caterpillar Do? is most highly recommended.

Emily-Jane Hills Orford

We all have a special job that’s meant just for us to do. Some of us will learn to fly; others will become great musicians or mathematicians. It’s the same in the animal world, as well as in the world of insects. Caterpillars don’t make music with their feet. Nor do they pollinate a garden, or have a hundred feet, or look like a stick. Other insects do that. And there are more. Many more. Each with its own special task, its own uniqueness. So, if caterpillars can’t do any of the things that other insects do, then what can they do? There’s a very special answer to that question and it will blow your mind away because it is such a beautiful thing they do (and only they can do it).

There are lots of books for children on insects, but David McArthur’s picture book, What Does A Caterpillar Do?, is a truly unique, interactive approach to introducing young children to a selection of different insects and what makes them so special. This is a question/ answer type of approach, where a question is asked in relation to caterpillars, like “Does a caterpillar catch flies in a web?” and the simple answer, “No”, is followed by the type of insect to which this unique, special trait applies. The question/ answer approach is clever and is coupled with colorful and insightful illustrations, each picture including the cheeky caterpillar that either can or can’t do all these amazing things. There will be lots of shared chuckles as the young reader studies this treasure of a book over and over again. This is a fun read as well as a great learning tool for both reading skills and understanding the uniqueness of different insects. Just like we are all unique and different.

Barbara Fanson

What Does a Caterpillar Do? is a beautiful book that takes children on a journey to discover caterpillars and other insects. Author David McArthur has created a wonderful story that helps children—and teachers and parents—explore the world around them, especially the insect world. A caterpillar walks around and meets all kinds of other insects and discovers what superpower they have. What makes that insect special? In the end, we find out what makes a caterpillar special. Teachers and parents will like this easy-to-read colorful introduction to bugs and discovering their special features.

The bold, full-color illustrations are fun and will draw children into What Does a Caterpillar Do? This children’s picture book features full-page illustrations and an easy-to-read story. The artwork by illustrator Lucy Rogers features an adorable caterpillar and lots of interesting insects. The artist adds expressive eyes and emotion to the faces in the artwork like the ladybug with the alluring eyes or the caterpillar sweating as he tries to show off his superhero strength. Children will love the bright colors and appealing characters as they explore the bug world. Perhaps parents will encourage children to draw some of the insects they see in the book. Author David McArthur introduces us to the insect world and invites us to explore nature during the day and at night. This book may stimulate children to look at flowers or in gardens for bugs. I think this book will be a wonderful addition to a preschooler’s shelf, a school kindergarten room, or a public library.

Bruce Arrington

What Does A Caterpillar Do?, part of the What Does Series by David McArthur, is a 36-page long illustrated children’s story, teaching young children (pre-k through grade 2) about nature. Using a caterpillar as the story’s theme, it asks many questions, most of which point to animals besides caterpillars. Finally, the story describes what a caterpillar can do.

First of all, I found the art delightful, detailed, filled with generous colors that seemed to pop from each page. It’s obvious the artist took her time with this project. It simply shows. Kids will love the dazzling colors and will want to read page after page. The call-and-response type of story draws the reader in. I can imagine a parent reading with a child, and the child answering so many questions with a resounding NO! in which the young reader can learn about the extraordinary abilities of Earth’s many wonderful creatures, besides butterflies. The story can also be used for the purpose of explaining how each of us is indeed unique, with varying talents and abilities, apart from others. So there is no need to compare ourselves with those of our age, as children are apt to do.

What Does A Caterpillar Do? by David McArthur pulls young minds into the often taken for granted wonders of nature. It reminds us to appreciate the wonders of the world and to pass that knowledge to the next generations. And yes, it does explain what a butterfly can do. Highly recommended.

Tiffany Ferrell

In What Does A Caterpillar Do? by David McArthur, we head off on a journey to discover what a caterpillar's job is. It doesn’t light our way at night; that’s the firefly’s job. It doesn’t catch flies in a web like spiders do, or make silk just as the silkworm does. A caterpillar doesn’t make a noise with its feet or have an ant's super strength. There are a lot of insects that do certain stuff that a caterpillar doesn’t do. It makes one wonder what exactly makes a caterpillar unique from all the other creatures? It does something that no other creature can do. The caterpillar turns into a very beautiful butterfly.

David McArthur has done a brilliant job in creating a colorful book that names a variety of insects and tells us what they can do that makes them special. If you have a child who isn’t a fan of insects and bugs, What Does A Caterpillar Do? would make an excellent story to help the child learn that they aren’t harmful and actually can do some pretty neat things. The illustrations by Lucy Rogers are absolutely beautiful and go perfectly with the story that McArthur is telling. Each image is very bright and colorful which certainly captures the attention of the targeted reading audience. The book is meant for younger children but I think that older kids would be able to appreciate the story for its facts and great artwork. It’s definitely a book that I would recommend to my friends with kids.