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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
In Which Bird Are You? by Merrick Rosenberg, the Grade 5 class of Galen Elementary was on its way to Camp Discovery. It was an annual event and something all the juniors looked forward to. It was a time to learn away from the classroom, a time to bond and discover so much about oneself and the world. When Mr. Marsten began a story around the nightly campfire, he talked about communities of birds, eagles, parrots, doves, and owls, all belonging to the avian world, but who can’t get along and couldn't accept their differences. He challenged the students to choose one of the birds as their spirit guide, one that defined their personalities. As the week progresses, he shares more of the story and the students learn more about themselves and their bird spirit guide. The story becomes their path to learning as they share so much more each day.
Merrick Rosenberg’s middle-grade chapter book Which Bird Are You? challenges young readers to embrace who they are, to accept their personality and the power behind it. The plot follows a group of students setting off on a one-week camp adventure. As they learn through science and nature, it’s the nighttime story around the campfire that captures their attention and gets them thinking about themselves and the world around them. The descriptive narrative is engaging and invites the young reader into the story. The dialogue is well constructed and appropriate for this age group. The plot moves at a good pace and the story within the story adds another dimension that will attract young readers. A powerful and entertaining tale, cleverly done.