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How Big Were Dinosaurs?
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How Big Were Dinosaurs?

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  169 ratings  ·  54 reviews
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published August 27th 2013 by Roaring Brook Press
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The Boy Who Loved Math by Deborah HeiligmanOn a Beam of Light by Jennifer  BerneA Splash of Red by Jennifer Fisher BryantLocomotive by Brian FlocaWho Says Women Can't Be Doctors? by Tanya Lee Stone
Childrens NonFiction 2013
117th out of 119 books — 39 voters
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NPR Best Books of 2013
96th out of 138 books — 93 voters

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Community Reviews

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Dinosaurs roam the pages of this picture book, which puts the lie to the notion that all dinosaurs were enormous in size and lived in similar habitats. Because the author/illustrator juxtaposes different types of dinosaurs against animals with which most readers will be familiar, it's easy to see that they were actually various sizes. For instance, the Microraptor was slightly smaller than a chicken, the Leaellynasaura was only two feet tall and lived near the South Pole. And the book makes it c ...more
Petter Ruenes
Feb 25, 2015 Petter Ruenes rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: PreK-3rd Grade
About the book:
I like the simplisity of this book. It is very up to the point about it's mission. The title of the book is a question, a question I think can interest a lot children. It is also a question the book answers in a detailed, yet simple way. It also tells the reader how they can measure dinosaurs lenght and height. The text is short and concrete. The illustration covers the whole pages and the text is inside the illustration. It also has some sense of humour in the way of explaining t
Heather Hilliker
This picture book is a nonfiction story that evaluates the sizes and facts of various dinosaurs. The author compares dinosaurs to animals that exist currently, such as when she compares a microraptor to a chicken. The author tells the readers further facts about each dinosaur that she chooses to compare, such as that even though a microraptor is deadly, a microraptor is indeed small. This book is filled with humorous drawings that show confused or fearful looking cartoon animals and dinosaurs th ...more
Sean Albright
How big were Dinosaurs? By Lita Judge

Twin text: How do Dinosaurs go to School? By Jane Yolen @2011

Rationale: I chose this fiction piece because it both relates to the non-fiction book I’ve paired it with and puts the dinosaurs in the same shoes as the students, which is fun for kids to see. The fiction book is written about dinosaurs and shares some brief insight into their former existences, but mainly places those same dinosaurs in today’s classrooms to see how well they would perform in relat
Danielle Zuhlke
1.)I’m Big! by Kate and Jim McMullan (August 31, 2010).
2.)The twin-text is a story about a dinosaur that overslept and lost his herd. He is on a search to find them, and he comes across many different dinosaurs as he looks. There are references to size, “I’m going up, up, up…check the neck, five stories high!” The story relates to How Big Were Dinosaurs? in both relating to size and by showing a variety of different dinosaurs.
3.)The text structure the author uses includes description, compariso
Lindsay Weideman
Twin Text: Dino Pets Go to School by Lynn Plourde

Rationale: I picked Dino Pets Go to School by Lynn Plourde as my twin text for How Big Were Dinosaurs by Lita Judge because I loved how it related to the size of dinosaurs that is discussed in the nonfiction book. The boy wants to take dinosaurs to school for Pet Day, but one is too tall for the bus, another is too loud for class, and the third is too spiky to play soccer. I think that students could relate the dinosaurs discussed in How Big Were
I got a request from one of my regular third grade classes, who visit every other Thursday, to do a nonfiction readaloud, and I wanted it to be something that would really open up their eyes to the possibility of what nonfiction can be. I pulled a ton of high-interest picture books on a cart for them--everything from grossology to mummies to hurricanes to bugs--and decided on How Big Were Dinosaurs? to read, as well as a little booktalk of Chuck Close: Face Book (which I've been trying to get th ...more
I have a few picky issues with this book comparing dinosaurs to modern day animals. First I think it is a good way to relate the sizes of the dinosaurs to children, but I found a couple to be a bit confusing. The reader is told Stegosaurus weighed as much as three cows but with bony plates on his back up to 3 feet long he looked much bigger. Is that bigger in weight or height? Seems like it should be height. Also I think instead of showing someone trying to brush Tyrannosaurus Rex's teeth, which ...more
Amanda Dietsch
How Big Were Dinosaurs? by Lita Judge is the non-fiction book I chose. The non-fiction book gives a good breakdown of the different dinosaurs that were around.
The twin book I chose for this is "Harry and the Bucketful of Dinosaurs" by Ian Whybrow. It is a story that connects to a lot of young readers. I chose this was a twin book because they are both about dinosaurs. Also, because feel that the same type of audience would enjoy and relate to both books. Regardless of whether a child has a toy
Heather Wright
"How Big Were Dinosaurs?" is a nonfiction book for children of the age 6-9. This book explains the realization and the size of all different animals comparing them to the animals we see today. The author explores 12 different dino's and how fossils are made and how scientist can determine a don's size by the fossil. I really enjoyed this book. I loved how the illustrations were silly and enjoyable at the same time. I also really enjoyed the fact of how it compared the dino's size to actual anima ...more
Pam Davis
This book would be great for the little students learning about dinosaurs but don’t quite understand the concept of size. It offers great illustrations in comparing dinosaurs with things from today such as the Microraptor with a rooster or the Struthiomimus with a race horse. I paired this book with Galaxy Zack: The Prehistoric Planet by Ray O’Ryan. This book is about a boy and his dog that travel to another planet, which is inhabited by dinosaurs, to return a baby Pterosaurs to its mother. I th ...more
Maria Fitz
Bookshelf Entry #4

Non-Fiction: “How Big were Dinosaurs” by Lita Judge
Fiction: “How do Dinosaurs say Goodnight” by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague

This book has all the facts about how big dinosaurs really were by measuring the bones and remains that archeologists have found throughout the years. It has silly pictures in it, which engage the children while teaching them the facts about these majestic animals. I think it’s an awesome book to get the children interested in something they will never see a
When ever I thought of dinosaurs as a kid, I always thought of giant and huge animals. "How Big were Dinosaurs?" by Lita Judge is a great book that gives some reality in a way that young children can connect with. This book has great facts about dinosaurs. The pictures are very realistic and engaging.

This book could be used in a dinosaur unit, measurement unit or a comparison unit.
Content Statement
1.) Dinosaurs were different sizes.
2.)Dinosaurs are animals.
3.) Dinosaurs are extincted.
Lots of little kids love dinosaurs. They are mythic in proportion and detail, with the added allure of having been REAL. Author/illustrator Lita Judge seems never to have grown out of this fascination, and in this book applies her masterful technique to her favorite extinct animals. Creatures like velociraptor and argentinosaurus are drawn side-by-side with living species, contextualizing their scale while imagining humorous interactions, giving the reader a sense of each animal’s likely tempera ...more
Whenever you think of dinosaurs, they are like the one on the cover of the book. Huge, green and either placid plant eaters or ferocious meat eaters. This nonfiction picture book takes a look at dinosaurs that are quite different. There is the microraptor who is the size of a chicken. The long-named Leaellynasaura stood as tall as an emperor penguin and lived in that same climate. Of course there were bigger dinosaurs too. The akylosaurus stood as tall as an SUV. There were dinosaurs with huge c ...more
Sometimes I look at scientists' depictions of dinosaurs and think, How do they know that? How do they know that dinosaur was that color? Truth is, they don't. It's their best guess. Beyond what scientists say about dinosaurs, the average person thinks of dinosaurs the way we've seen them depicted on-screen. i.e., Jurassic Park. So imagine my surprise when I opened this book and read that velociraptors were only about as big as a medium-size dog. What? Can't be, because I saw two of them fight a ...more
Another winner by Lita Judge. I love the way she compares the different dinosaurs to things that students are familiar with today. "A Microraptor would look a modern-day chicken in the eye." And "the Protoceratops is no bigger than a baby rhinoceros." The illustrations are wonderful. This is sure to be a heavy favorite with students.

Note to publisher: phonetic spelling of the dinosaur's names would be extremely helpful for adults who want to read this to kids.
This is a nonfiction book intended for children of elementary school ages. It is a cut and dry comparison book for sizes of dinosaurs in respect to other animals. The illustrations are funny and entertaining. I can definitely see the appeal for young children. The dinosaurs in the book are put side by side with animals and objects from every day life so that kids can see how they size up. A great choice for young children to learn about dinosaurs while also getting a good laugh.
Kari Worsham
The author decides to answer the question by looking at a variety of dinosaurs and comparing them to known animals to give kids an idea of how big some dinosaurs really were. This is written kind of like a story and is easy to read...not to factual. It could be a really good non-fiction book if real illustrations/pictures were used but the illustrator decided to draw them. It is still well done nevertheless.
NYC Reads 365
"Imagine cleaning the teeth of a T. Rex, or sitting in traffic next to an ankylosaurus. Better yet, let this book show you! Author/illustrator Lita Judge doesn't merely list dimensions—her colorful drawings use familiar animals and modern-day situations as contexts for a wide range of dinosaur sizes: from the fierce-yet-small microraptor (smaller than a chicken) to the largest-ever land animal, the argentinosaurus (four school-buses long)."
Michele Knott
I liked seeing how the author compared the animals to more concrete things children have more background knowledge on. I may be not as knowledgable about dinosaurs as some kids are, but many of the dinos that are mentioned are not dinos that I know! I wish there were some more familiar ones mentioned.
My son found this book quite interesting. It compares dinosaurs to things that most kids know, such as adults, buses, etc... My son loved that there was at least one dinosaur that was around his height. He went around pretending to be that dinosaur for a few days.
This is a fun and informative picture book for all of the reasons already mentioned here. This is also a frustrating exercise in reading against the masculine generic. All of the dinosaurs are "he," and are measured according whether they were "longer than a man's arm," or "nearly as long as a man is tall," and halfway through reading aloud my seven year old shifted into reading it inclusively instead (taking away from the text itself). All of the humans in the book are boys or men, save two: a ...more
Judge is meant to create stunning nonfiction for children & this lovely work on dinosaurs exemplifies why. Comparisons between modern-day creatures and inventions showcase the sizes of various dinosaur species alongside entertaining prose. Highly recommend.
Sarah Adamson
I do not know how accurate this book is but it is a really great comparison book for young kids (and everyone else!) to work out how big dinosaurs really were in comparison to modern day animals/vehicles. Fun and informative.
Great story time book comparing the various sizes of dinosaurs to contemporary creatures. Really surprising information! The illustrations aren't spectacular, but they do try to demonstrate size perspective.
this is a great edition to any child's dinosaur collection. it's really need to compare the dinosaur we imagine to the objects we see daily or are already familiar with. a great perspective on dinosaurs.
Very relatable comparisons between assorted dinos (many unknown to me) to everyday things. Love the fold out dinosaur parade page, it really shows the range in sizes.
Loved this informational picture book! It's perfect for pre-school storytimes and I love how it relates the dinosaurs to animals that the children would currently know.
Emily Bayci
A look at the range of sizes and shapes in dinosaurs. Different species are compared to modern day animals. Perfect for a dino read a loud or any dino lover.
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