Children’s Book Author and School Visits
Illustrated by Robin Brickman.
Published by Millbrook Press, 1996.
Have you ever wondered why birds have different shaped beaks? Many beaks are long and pointy while others are round and smooth. Some beaks have ridges; there are even beaks shaped like spoons. Birds can do the most amazing things with their beaks, from cracking open a shell to turning an egg. It’s all in a day’s work.
Stephen Swinburne’s lyrical, chant-along text and Joan Paley’s stunning paper collage illustrations introduce young children to a variety of wonderfully distinctive bird beaks of all shapes, sizes and colors.
This book has taught me to keep my “ears and eyes open” since you never know when you will get an idea for a book. One day a few years ago, I was coming out of my house when I heard “tap, tap, tap, tap, tap!” I looked up at the old apple tree out back and saw a woodpecker pecking away at the bark trying to uncover some bugs. While watching this woodpecker work away for its breakfast, I started thinking that how much its beak was like a hammer or chisel. I then thought how beaks are really like tools and that they are pretty unbeatable. That’s when I went upstairs and began my poem, UNBEATABLE BEAKS.