Discoveries in the Sand

Document Type

Creative Work

Publication Date


Publication Title

Discoveries in the Sand


When faced with issues like climate change which can seem too big to handle, we are often left wondering, what can we even do to help? Education is key for finding solutions. Picture books are a perfect means for educating the next generation because they incorporate lexical and visual components together in an entertaining way for kids. Knowing this, I decided to create a picture book, Discoveries in the Sand, that introduces the audience––children from ages 4 through 8––to the animals of the Mojave Desert. The goal of this book is to increase children’s interest for this desert, and nature as a whole, so that when these children grow up, they will be inclined towards making decisions that promote the well-being of our environment.

In Discoveries in the Sand, readers meet the main character, Nyla, in a state of frustration after she finds out her family’s annual trip will be to the Mojave Desert instead of at the beach. To Nyla, the desert is a barren land filled with tumbleweeds and sand; it is not until her parents give her the task of searching for some of the many animals of this desert, that Nyla realizes how full of life this ecosystem really is. By the end of the trip, she has had a change of heart, and can’t wait to come back again so she can see more of what the Mojave Desert has to offer.


mojave desert; umbrella species; desert tortoise; desert; picture book


Book and Paper | Desert Ecology | Illustration | Integrative Biology

Place Name

Mojave Desert

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