Age Level: 5 – 9
You Are Special Just The Way You Are
Phibian the frog compares his body to other desert animals and even two-legged beings. After wishing, he was like the other animals he discovers he is perfect and special just the way he is.
About the people and animals represented in this book.
I have combined a wee bit of Arizona’s archeology, ethnobotany, and fauna to weave a story of coming to terms with and loving yourself for just who and what you are.
There are 24 frog species in the state of Arizona. The Arizona tree frog which loves the area around Central Arizona (above 5,000 feet), is one the state’s best-known frogs. It became recognized as the state’s amphibian 1986 when school children nominated it part of a contest held by the Arizona Game and Fish Department.
Frogs have been a symbol of water for the First Peoples for hundreds of generations. The ancient Hohokam people, who lived in the area from Mexico northward into what is now known as the Verde Valley, loved to paint their pots with the various animals that lived around them. They lived in this area from approximately 1 CE to 1425 CE. For them and many of today’s people, frogs represent water—a valuable resource in the Southwest! The Hohokam had a great deal of respect for these incredible amphibians. We should as well.
My favorite frog, the Tarahumara, is feared to be extinct. Many of Arizona’s frogs are endangered due to destroyed aquatic habitats. Tarahumara frogs were stream-dwelling and never far from permanent water sources where they laid eggs, become tadpoles, and lived as adult frogs. Meet Phibian, my imaginary friend from long ago.