Mom at home scientist

Ecology of my motherhood; analyzed, frugal, and (mostly) natural.

Katya’s Book of Mushrooms- a book review

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This fall I taught our local homeschool co-op STEAM class and focused on fungi. I borrowed every book that I could get my hands on from our local library and requested an extra dozen. I was pleasantly surprised by this book showing up on my shelf, Katya’s Book of Mushrooms, by Katya Arnold.

Katya’s Book of Mushrooms is a story of Katya’s passion and love for mushrooms and discovering them in the wild. Her book is not a field guide, so shouldn’t be consulted for foraging tips nor should it be used to identify mushrooms as edible or poisonous. Using delightful illustrations, drawn by the author, she tells mythological stories of her forest friends, and illuminates their ecological role there.

As a forager myself, I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of information on morphology that is used to key out a mushroom identification, although it does not help with making any species suggestions. I think this is a good feature for the intended audience of children from 5-14, as they shouldn’t be making edibility judgements without an expert’s opinion.

This delightful book illustrates many commonly found mushrooms of North Akatyas book of mushroomsmerica, and yet has information from Russia, as that is where Katya Arnold was born and spent her early years.

I highly recommend Katya’s Book of Mushrooms for science units to introduce a child to fungi and instill increased awareness of the presence of mushrooms around us in nature.

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Author: Jenn

A busy at home scientist and mom with hypothyroid Hashimoto's, Jenn tries to make the best decisions for her family based on science, frugality, religion, health, sustainability and time management (not necessarily in that order). She occasionally writes poetry or goes ballroom dancing. Jenn regularly attends both church and mass. She also has a zoology degree from one of the most prestigious science universities in the country, more research experience than many PhD grads and a love-hate relationship with toxicology. Jenn cloth diapers mostly, but practices "elimination communication" as well. She has lived in three countries and speaks several languages. Jenn also sews, cooks, bakes, gardens, spins (wool) and loves calculus, even though she may be a bit rusty at it by now. With many food intolerances in her family, Jenn is constantly looking at dietary bypasses and evaluating food choices taking into account her education in metabolism, cell and molecular biology and biochemistry. To add to the complexity, she has started following the Auto-Immune Protocol (AIP), which is for healing the gut and putting auto-immune disease into remission.

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