Steve Jenkins's newest book Just a Second makes me ponder the meaning to even greater lengths. In a second, I learned, woodpeckers can hammer a tree trunk 20 times, and a human can blink 7 times. In a minute, a human heart beats about 70 times while a hamster's heart beats 450 times! In an hour, baby blue whales gain 10 pounds when drinking their mothers' milk. In a day, the worldwide chicken population lays 2,000,000,000 eggs. In a week, moose antlers can grow by 6 inches. Not one to usually memorize facts, I found myself fixated on the incredible statistics in the book.
Of course, his incredible cut-paper illustrations astound me! The crushed aluminum can (with accompanying facts about the landfill accumulation in a month) looks real! The details of eyes, tails, and teeth on the mice offspring (with a horrifying fact about what the worldwide population would be is all the original pair's offspring survived) are amazing. He is noted for his fabulous, fact-filled glossaries, and this book also includes terrific timelines and graphs. Students will love it as a book to peruse alone or to hear read aloud.