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Children's Nonfiction General

In My Backyard

by (author) Margriet Ruurs

illustrated by Ron Broda

Initial publish date
Mar 2007
General, Mammals, General
Recommended Age
4 to 8
Recommended Grade
p to 3
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2007
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


From the singing of little wrens in spring to paper wasps building their nests in summer; from baby bats drinking mother’s milk in fall to baby possums climbing into mother’s pouch in winter, In My Backyard celebrates nature and backyard animals through the seasons. Wildlife artist Ron Broda’s detailed paper-sculpture art beautifully complements Margriet Ruurs’ lyrical text, and young readers will discover a captivating variety of animals and insects.

Find the ladybug in each illustration, along with a hidden animal, which becomes featured on the next page. A detailed legend and helpful hints on how to turn your own backyard into an inviting place for animals to live make this book a must-have for wildlife and nature lovers alike.

About the authors

Margriet Ruurs is the award-winning author of forty books for children. Passionate about literacy, she writes children's and educational materials and conducts author visits and writing workshops at international schools around the world. Her picture book biography A Brush Full of Colour: The World of Ted Harrison won the Canadian Children’s Literature Roundtables Information Book Award and the Crystal Kite Award, and was nominated for several others. Born in the Netherlands, Margriet raised her family in the Yukon, Canada. Today, when she isn't travelling, she runs a booklover's bed and breakfast on Salt Spring Island in British Columbia.


Margriet Ruurs' profile page

Ron Broda's profile page

Editorial Reviews

“In brief text and lavishly colorful illustrations, Ruurs and Broda demonstrate the diverse abundance of wildlife that frequents our backyards…Ruurs’ new book reflects her admirable desire to help children learn to appreciate the majesty of their natural surrounds…Recommended.”
—CM Magazine

Librarian Reviews

In My Backyard

In My Backyard opens the door to a garden that is home to a variety of creatures and plant life. No matter what the season or time of day or night, our backyards are busy places. Readers will become acquainted with slow-moving snails, calling toads, hovering hummingbirds, slithering snakes, dancing butterflies, hungry opossums and more.

Margriet Ruurs approaches her subject matter with sensitivity. Her text is gentle and lyrical: “A butterfly dances on the wind, bringing a rainbow of colours to my garden.” A legend provides us with helpful information on how our own backyards can also become a haven for all manner of wildlife.

It is Ron Broda's amazing paper sculptures which will make readers wonder, “How does he do that?” Each page is a visual feast. Note the variety of paper textures, the exquisite details, the contrast of vivid and muted colours, and the realistic backyard view from the creatures’ perspective. One can examine Broda's artwork many times over, yet still notice something new. Can you find the ladybug in each illustration? Have you discovered the hidden animal that becomes featured on the following page?

Inspired by In My Backyard, readers will see their own backyards as they never have before. What a fine way to encourage budding naturalists to reconnect with nature!

Source: The Canadian Children's Bookcentre. Summer 2007. Vol.30 No.3.

In My Backyard

Striking paper sculptures complement the lyrical text of this celebration of nature, the seasons and backyard animals. Includes a legend to creatures appearing in the book, tips on inviting animals to backyards, as well as facts on birds, hummingbirds, butterflies and composting.

Source: The Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Best Books for Kids & Teens. 2008.

Other titles by Margriet Ruurs

Other titles by Ron Broda