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A Rock Is Lively

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  416 ratings  ·  108 reviews
From the award-winning creators of An Egg Is Quiet, A Seed Is Sleepy, and A Butterfly Is Patient comes a gorgeous and informative introduction to the fascinating world of rocks. From dazzling blue lapis lazuli to volcanic snowflake obsidian, an incredible variety of rocks are showcased in all their splendor. Poetic in voice and elegant in design, this book introduces an ar ...more
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published August 29th 2012 by Chronicle Books (first published January 1st 2012)
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Me...Jane by Patrick McDonnellBalloons Over Broadway by Melissa SweetA Seed Is Sleepy by Dianna Hutts AstonRedwoods by Jason ChinSwirl by Swirl by Joyce Sidman
Best non-fiction picture books
10th out of 220 books — 70 voters
Mr. Tiger Goes Wild by Peter  BrownOpen This Little Book by Jesse KlausmeierPete the Cat by Eric LitwinHank Finds an Egg by Rebecca DudleyA Rock Is Lively by Dianna Hutts Aston
Preschool Storytime
5th out of 33 books — 12 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 750)
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Lisa Vegan
Feb 13, 2013 Lisa Vegan rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: ages 8-12+- who are interested in nature, geology, art, history, the earth, gorgeous pictures
I’ve read the earlier three books in this series by this author-illustrator team: A Seed Is Sleepy and An Egg Is Quiet and A Butterfly Is Patient and I gave them all 5 stars, so I was very eager to read this 4th book. Also, I collected rocks and shells as a child, and so I was particularly curious about this book.

I wasn’t the slightest bit disappointed. In fact, I think this is my favorite of the 4 books.

I was charmed the minute I opened the book and saw a bunch of gorgeous rocks pictured on the
I love rocks. I have always loved rocks and will forever walk with my head down scanning the ground for specimens. This is a BEAUTIFUL book. Its watercolor illustrations are so perfect and real you have to look to be sure some are not photographs. And that is high praise in a publishing world of non-fiction informational books that is filled with mostly photos these days!

This book shows how rocks are formed, how they move, how they are used, what they create, and more. Each section is headed wit
Aug 25, 2014 Dolly rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a wonderful combination of poetry, science, and gorgeous illustrations. Our girls love to look at rocks, especially gemstones; they love to discover the wonders inside a geode or ponder the flecks of color in some quartz.

This book inspires the same kind of wonder and awe and I love that there's a science lesson woven throughout. It's a terrific book and we really enjoyed reading it together.
Another stellar collaboration by the team that created An Egg Is Quiet, A Seed Is Sleepy, and A Butterfly Is Patient, this nonfiction picture book focuses on rocks and minerals. The book begins with rock melted as magma beneath the earth. It talks about what makes up rocks and how old they are, as well as the rocks that we find in space. Rocks as tools and weapons are explored, mixed in with the amazing rock interiors that surprise and delight. The different types of rocks finish off the factual ...more
Perhaps only this incredibly talented team could have managed to make rocks seem so appealing to the uninitiated. For those who have spent time studying rocks in their infinite variety, this book provides visual and textual proof of why they are so fascinating. As in their earlier titles, An Egg Is Quiet, A Seed Is Sleepy, and A Butterfly Is Patient, the duo takes a close look at something in the world around them, in this case, rocks, and then characterizes it as "lively," "mixed up," even "gal ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
If you want Astonishingly Amazingly Beautiful in a children's book, look no further than the writing/illustrating team of Dianna Hutts Aston and Sylvia Long. A Rock is Lively is Aston and Long's fourth joint effort following the success of An Egg is Quiet, A Seed is Sleepy, and A Butterfly is Patient.

I knew this would be a lovely book, but I'd almost despaired of obtaining a copy in time to evaluate it for the Cybils when my librarian friend surprised me with the book last week.

I hope you'll f
Laura Salas
Beautiful illustrations and poetic, surprising text combine to make a terrific nonfiction picture book. If you thought rocks just sat there, think again. This book will make you look at rocks in an entirely different way.

Excerpt: ...bubbling like a pot of soup deep beneath the earth's crust...liquid...molten...boiling

The poetic text alternates wtih straight prose: Depending on what type of rock it is, a rock melts at temperatures between 1,300 and 2,400 degrees Fahrenheit (700 and 1,300 degrees
This book has a lot of information and is one i would use to split up into multiple days and activities as it is very long to read all at once. This book focuses on all different kinds of rocks and how they are alike and different. It talks about how rocks are made up of different ingredients like a recipe and what those "ingredients" are for certain rocks. It talks abut the different states of a rock in comparison to soup that starts boiling at higher temperatures. This book also talks about ho ...more
Liz B
I really like geology, so this book was right up my alley. And I also love the title--as my husband said upon seeing it: "No it's not!" But Aston convincingly brings us back to her central idea of the liveliness of rocks, as she looks at science, art, and history.

I like this a lot for kids of all ages (well, over about the age of 3 or 4 maybe). It would work well, I think, even at the secondary level in an earth science class as an introduction or overview. In an English class, it can be used a
Another stunning book from the pair who brought us An Egg Is Quiet, A Seed Is Sleepy, and A Butterfly Is Patient. From the rock cycle, to rocks as tools, this is an engaging and informative introduction to geology.
Yusra Faridi
Similar to the other books in this collection, this book is very unique piece that introduces the concept of rocks in an informational yet entertaining way. The book discusses the various different types of rocks and how some of them are formed. This book can be read aloud to older elementary students as they make their way to learning about rocks and geology in science. The pictures in this book are extremely detailed and fascinating to look at. The information provided is helpful to not only s ...more
Allison Barry
I compared this book with Sylvester and the Magic Pebble by William Steig. I chose to match this book up with William Steig's book because they both mention rocks. Of course, a pebble is another form of a rock, but Sylvester ends up turning himself into a rock. The rock he found with his parents turned out to be a wishing rock and he was left up on the hill for a number of years before his parents found him. In A Rock is Lively, it discusses specific rocks like sedimentary, igneous, and metamorp ...more
Sarah VanDyke
I really liked this book because it was informative and the illustrations were attractive. I really liked how it talked about different types of rocks and its uses. I was surprised to read how some rocks are used in toothpaste and how crocodiles swallow rocks so they can stay underwater. I would recommend this book especially for science activities and older grade levels due to the vocabulary. I think it does a great job at presenting the information. In the classroom, the book would be better u ...more
Feb 15, 2013 Amy rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Amy by: Dolly
A Rock is Lively is an interesting, attractive book sure to appeal to young rock fans. The kids seemed moderately interested in this book; my niece was interested in the pages about geodes and petroglyphs, and my nephew was excited about the pages about space rocks.

I didn't really care for this book as much as I did for A Seed Is Sleepy, or An Egg Is Quiet. There is a tactile quality to rocks, and I think that much of the data I gather about rocks comes from handling them. The illustrations were
April Dawn
Book Title: A Rock is Lively by Dianna Hutts Aston

Short Description of the Book: This book is absolutely stunning from the word choice to the drawings of beautiful rocks and gems. I cannot believe that I have taught rocks and minerals without this in my collection!
Students will be captivated from the very first page. It is a must have!

FOCUS: Features I would Use in a Mini-Lesson:
1-Informational Text Structure: Comparison. Throughout this text, rocks and minerals are compared to other items. Fo
Gorgeous. Illustrations that make you want to reach right into the picture, touch the surface of the snowflake obsidian, feel the texture of the granite, put a fingertip on the billions of years of history contained in a meteorite. Will work for young listeners who can appreciate the large, simple sentences, as well as reward older independent readers who will pore over the text written in smaller type, which gives more in-depth info.
Looking at the title, I am captivated with the idea that a rock can be lively. Wouldn't you be? To me, rocks are lifeless and dull. Yet, as I read this book, I discover that each rock carries a story, a historical account of their origins. To be quite honest, I never knew how much we use rocks in our everyday lives. If you think we are the only ones who use rocks, you are sadly mistaken. Animals do this as well. What I found invigorating about this book, was the poetic inflication that each page ...more
Bubbling like a pot of soup deep beneath the earth's crust.....liquid....molten....boiling
This book can be on the border of a non-fiction book and a picture book. The author and illustrator have really come together to bring splashes of color to talk about how rocks can be lively. The use of color hightens what each rock does and its purpose, also shows where it comes from. Then going into how rocks can be galactic so on and so forth.

I think books is suited for 2nd through 5th grade. It's a grea
Megan Wismer
Audience: K-5
Genre: Nonfiction
Fiction Twin Text: The Blue Stone - a Journey Through Life (3-6th Grade)
A Rock is Lively does such a wonderful job of explaining the many uses of a rock. It explains a rock is helpful, surprising, inventive, and even creative. To take the idea of a rock being creative to the next level, I would use the book The Blue Stone. This book talks of a beautiful Blue stone. The stone is broken in half, one piece left and the other created into a statue. Throughout the book
Carla Pelayo
A Rock is Lively is the perfect title for this beautiful informational book. Readers take off on a journey through the world of rocks; finding out what they are made of, where they come from, and what they have been used for, to name a few. Aston’s poetic introductions and simple descriptions draw in the reader’s attention, feed us tons of knowledge, and keep us entertained. Long’s striking watercolors portray her excitement about her subjects while the vivid colors and details make us want to l ...more
Chelsea Cotton
Dianna Aston creates another beautifully illustrated informative book. A Rock is Lively explores a large variety of rocks while focusing on unique characteristics of each. The illustrations truly bring these rocks to live. This book is perfect for a student interested in studying rocks.
A rock is helpful, huge and tiny, galactic, surprising, inventive, creative. A mix of facts and poetic description about the different forms and uses of rocks.
Catania Larson
This is a beautiful book. It is also informative. Not only did I learn from it, but my two youngest (ages 5 and 3) also were interested in it.

This is a wonderful picture which provides basic information about rocks. The illustrations are colorful and beautiful and display rocks at their most attractive. Rocks are used by animals to digest food, access food and swim. Rocks change over millions of years and can be recycled. There are many important reasons for rocks. The target audience for the book appears to be about 4th or 5th grade when children begin to study rocks and minerals. Some sentences are written in cursive and more sophis ...more
Gorgeous illustrations with lyrical text make learning about rocks easy and enjoyable. I can't wait to read more in this series!
The watercolor illustrations are amazing, but other than that, it wasn't the best because of the evolutionary mindset.
During our summer vacationing we came across various rocks and precious stones. This book was a great follow up for me and my kids. It is beautifully illustrated and insightful. It also pairs nicely with the study of ancient civilization as it touches on petroglyphs, mortar and pestal usage and shows a large beautiful drawing of Lapis Lazuli which the Ishtar Gate of the ancient city of Babylon was made out of. This book paired nicely with an early reader book by National Geographic Kids entitled ...more
Valerie Midkiff
Beautifully illustrated picture book about rocks and minerals. Entertaining and informative.
The text and illustrations are gorgeous. Perhaps illegible to children--especially the script text--yet gorgeous.

A collection of fun facts presented in an almost poetic way. This would have made the childhood version of me want to research geology. It makes the adult version of me want to research geology.

For some reason, the title annoys me. Seriously have no idea why. It just seems...silly? Not entirely connected to the book? Too reminiscent of the phrase "Look lively everyone!" I am going to
Audience: Primary
Genre: Non-Fiction/Geology


Fiction-Twin-Text "If Rocks Could Sing" by Leslie McGuirk

"A Rock is Lively" gives the reader a visual of all different types of rocks and how they are made and where they've come from. It shows rocks in different colors, shapes, sizes, and their uses (if any). The Fiction-Twin-Text I chose is "If Rocks Could Sing" by Leslie McGuirk. In this book, rocks sing out the alphabet; they show the reader rocks shaped as the alphabet letter and rocks that a
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Dianna Hutts Aston was born in Houston, Texas, attended the University of Houston, and worked as a journalist for several years. LOONY LITTLE is her first picture book with Candlewick Press. She says, "It was one of the hottest summer days on record. My mind, of its own accord, kept wandering northward, to a wilderness of snow and ice, the Arctic. While listening to the news one evening, I heard P ...more
More about Dianna Hutts Aston...
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