Actual Size Steve Jenkins

 Actual Size by Steve Jenkins
summary, lesson/activity ideas, reading levels, etc



Striking paper collages depict 18 animals--or just a body part--in its
actual size. For example, a tiny dwarf gobi fish (only 1/3 inch big) is powerfully depicted right next to a huge atlas moth which has a 12
inch wingspan!  Even more powerfully, a double page spread covers
just the eyeball of a 59 foot long giant squid!  While I could give more
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examples, but really...the collages must be seen in person.

And if you like this book, be sure to check out Prehistoric Actual Size, which follows the same premise but feature a wide range of prehistoric creatures. To learn more about the book, click here.


Actual Size by Steve Jenkins

Reading Stats  
Interest Level:  PreS-Gr.5    DRA: 28
Reading Level: age 4-8        Lexile: 1080L

Topics Covered
animals & biodiversity   size & measurement

Awards & Rating
BCCB Blue Ribbon Non-Fiction Book Award
NCTE Orbis Pictus Non-Fiction Honor Book
Int'l Reading Assoc Children's Choices 2005
Booklist Editor's Choice Children's Book
NY Public Library 100 Titles for Sharing
ALA Top 10 Sci-Tech Books for Youth 2004
Avg Customer Rating:
5 stars (24 reviews)
Actual Size


Peek Inside
Below are two spreads from inside this book. Remember--the premise of the book is that animals (or animal parts) are shown in actual size. Now imagine these spreads are book size (in this case, an inch high and 2 inches wide!)  When your students see the book version of the first spread, for instance, they will get a fascinating insight into how big ostriches (the largest bird) truly are.


Actual Size by Steve Jenkins


Actual Size by Steve Jenkins


Related Lesson & Activity Ideas
If you are teaching about measurement, check out the following a lesson idea. Additionally,
if you use Actual Size for teaching measurement, please share your lesson/activity ideas.

Lesson Idea: Measuring Animals
This is a fun book to use when teaching students how to measure things! Give each student one a ruler and have one tape measure that you will use together as a class. Start by measuring hands, feet, finger, etc as practice--each student using his or her own ruler. Then, go through the book, and for each animal, say aloud the length and use the ruler or the tape measure to see how big or small it is. When you say the height/length of an animal [provided by the book], have the students look at their ruler and figure out if they can measure it with that ruler or not. If it's bigger, then use the tape measure (as a class) and pull it out as long as the measurement for that animal is. Sometimes it's fun to share the measurement first, then show the picture so they can see how HUGE an elephants foot is, how tiny a dwarf goby fish is, etc... Your students will probably really enjoy this activity, and may even want to walk around the room measuring things after that. :)  And as a side note, the animals and specific facts that Jenkins selected for this book are really interesting!



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