Cover image for Making the world
Making the world
Wood, Douglas, 1951-
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, [1998]

Physical Description:
40 unnumbered pages : color illustrations ; 26 x 27 cm
Reveals the secret of how our unfinished world is being made complete by everyone who lives in it, including the reader.
Reading Level:
AD 950 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 4.4 0.5 29283.

Reading Counts RC K-2 4.8 2 Quiz: 13764 Guided reading level: L.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



The author of the bestselling Old Turtle takes readers on a trip around the world to show how each of us makes an impact. Full color.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 3^-7. The concepts of change and cause-and-effect can be difficult for little ones to grasp. This ambitious, philosophical picture book, with its lyrical, simple prose, attempts to show how everything and everyone has a significant effect upon life and the landscape. A breeze ripples the water, visually altering how the water looks; from mountains come streams, which feed the earth. The constant refrain "making the world" may be confusing, but it is certainly thought-provoking, as it interweaves the concepts of creation, change, and influence in relation to natural landscapes and plant, animal, and human life. These concepts are framed as a "secret" young ones must "promise to tell someone else," which questions the definition and nature of secrets. However, using scenes from a variety of geographical locations, the book cleverly offers perspectives, ranging from grandiose overviews to close-ups of objects and beings, that show how all things great and small are part of the chain. Illustrated with delicate, detailed watercolor paintings, the book is a thoughtful visual treat, introducing some important and intriguing concepts while piquing youngsters' curiosity. --Shelle Rosenfeld

Publisher's Weekly Review

A vision of cosmic interconnectedness starts off strong but gets a bit overdone in this message-driven picture book. "The world isn't finished yet," runs Wood's (Old Turtle) leitmotif, declared on the first page. "It's still being made." A breeze, for example, makes ripples and waves on the water, which wears down sand and pebbles, "and the world is changed." Yoshi (The First Story Ever Told), who was inspired here by her daughter, Hibiki Miyazaki, follows Wood's scene-changes with naturalistic, mostly full-spread watercolors: she shows a boy playing at a New England seashore; an antelope darting across the African savannah; a hilly Andean terrain crisscrossed by farms and trod by burros. Each setting is teeming with numerous elements (e.g., for the savannah, there is also an ancient baobab tree, bushbabies, baboons, various species of birds, etc.), each enumerated by the text and credited with "help[ing] to make the world." Meanwhile, "you" (an African girl reclining in the shade of a tree; a Japanese child looking at her reflection in a pool of koi; etc.) "help to make the world, too." But there are so many significant words on the page, paired with the often busy illustrations, that readers may have trouble keeping up. The simplest scenes are most successful, especially the last, which returns to the seashore to depict the moon gleaming over the bay, lighthouse and beach house, accompanied by one simple, poignant line of type. Ages 3-7. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 2‘This picture book explores the variety and beauty of nature and the impact that every living thing makes on the Earth. Lyrical text and full-page watercolor illustrations wrap readers in a view of a planet that is always changing: "Everywhere you look/and everywhere you listen,/someone or something/is helping/to make the world." A boy on the North American coastline experiences transformations at the beach as the morning breeze causes waves that alter the shoreline and a wildflower gives a butterfly "a sweet sip of nectar." As the child enjoys nature's beauty, he, too, helps to make the world. From this setting the story moves around the globe to the African plains where another child observes the plants and animals native to that region, and then it's onward to similar scenes in Asia and South America. As the story comes full circle, nighttime arrives in North America and the boy is tucked into bed. The illustrations are realistic with impressionist overtones that successfully reflect the mood of the text, creating a soft and gentle presentation that broadens a young child's awareness of our planet, its beauty, and everyone's ability to affect change.‘Diane Nunn, Richard E. Byrd Elementary School, Glen Rock, NJ (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.