Chicago Review Press Does It Again: Industrial Revolution for Kids

Chicago Review Press has a new book out this month in their wonderful collection of American history titles: The Industrial Revolution for Kids: The People and Technology That Changed the World, with 21 Activities by Cheryl Mullenbach.

The Industrial Revolution was a time of sweeping changes. New technologies led to booming industries and resulted in vast modifications to the lives of many people, particularly the children. Readers will learn about not just the big names of the period, like inventor Thomas Edison and Photographer Jacob Riis, but also some people who are not household names, such as Lucy Larcom, who worked in a mill as a child. What were their lives like? How were their lives different from ours and also from their ancestors? Mullenbach pulls from the stories of real children to make history relevant to the young reader.

If you are familiar with the books in the Chicago Review Press For Kids series, you know they stand out because of the hands-on activities sprinkled throughout the text. Even at the middle school age and above, hand-on learning is so important for retention and in-depth understanding. For example, one of the activities is to design a living quarters for a family living in a tenement with the dimensions 10 feet by 10 feet. It is one thing to read about the small space, it is another to try to actually make it work. Although not provided, the project could bring about further research into what types of furniture a tenement family might have owned. It is easy to image how any of the projects might inspire  a young reader to jump into a more in depth investigation into different aspects of the era.

The Industrial Revolution for Kids is a versatile book that would be useful as a resource for a school report or research project, as a homeschool text for a unit on American History, or as a way for adults to quickly browse and brush up on history. See how history can be made relevant and interesting with this unique, hands-on learning approach.

Related activity:

One suggested activity in the book is to investigate the science of cycling. This video shows how advances in technology that started during the Industrial Revolution continue to improve the bicycling experience.

For more, try The Science of Cycling at the Exploratorium.

Age Range: 9 and up
Grade Level: 4 and up
Series: For Kids series
Paperback: 144 pages
Publisher: Chicago Review Press (August 1, 2014)
ISBN-10: 1613746903
ISBN-13: 978-1613746905

Interested in learning more about this series? Check my review of World War I for Kids.

Disclosures:  This book was provided by the publisher for review purposes. I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at not extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.

 Nonfiction Monday is a blogging celebration of nonfiction books for kids. Join us at the Nonfiction Monday blog.

Posted in Middle Grade Nonfiction, Nonfiction, Nonfiction Monday Review | Tagged , | 2 Comments

How Does a Caterpillar Become a Butterfly?

Next week (July 19-27, 2014) is National Moth Week and what better way to celebrate than with a good book like How Does a Caterpillar Become a Butterfly?: And Other Questions about Butterflies (Good Question!) by Melissa Stewart and illustrated by Annie Patterson?

Why a book about butterflies for moth week? Although moths and butterflies are not the same, many of the details in this book about the caterpillars and about metamorphosis overlap between the two. Also, Stewart includes detailed information about how a butterfly is different than a moth on page 24, with a gorgeous photograph of a luna moth to accompany it. The last reason is that people are more likely to relate to day-flying butterflies than to cryptic moths, so many more books are written about butterflies.

Formulated in a question and answer format, the reader can quickly find information to write a report or satisfy curiosity. For example, do you know why the larval stage of a butterfly or moth is called a caterpillar?

caterpillar-for-postAs Stewart points out, the word caterpillar comes from French words meaning “hairy cat.” Isn’t that so much more poetic than some other scientific terms?

The illustrations are also eye catching. Annie Patterson’s delicate watercolors meld nicely with the fabulous full color photographs that are sprinkled throughout.

How Does a Caterpillar Become a Butterfly? is definitely a great book to have on hand for youngsters interested in nature. Pull it out for units on life cycles, insects or to celebrate National Moth Week!

Related:

The Growing with Science website now has information and Hands-On Activities with Butterflies and Moths.

Looking for even more books? Try our freshly updated  list of moth and butterfly books for kids at the Science Books for Kids website.

moth-and-butterfly-books-for-children-list

Age Range: 7 and up
Grade Level: 1 and up
Series: Good Question!
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Sterling Children’s Books (January 7, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1454906669
ISBN-13: 978-1454906667

Disclosures:  I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at not extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.

 Nonfiction Monday is a blogging celebration of nonfiction books for kids. Join us at the new Nonfiction Monday blog.

Posted in Nonfiction, Nonfiction Monday Review, Picture book- nonfiction | Tagged , | 1 Comment

New Book for Kids: Super Spiders

Super Spiders (Read Me!: Walk on the Wild Side) by Charlotte Guillain starts right out with the important question: “Are you afraid of spiders, or do you find them interesting?” If you fall in the “spiders are amazing” camp, then this is a book for you.

Read to find out what spiders look like, what they eat, and how they spin their webs. Colorful photographs show close-ups of many different kinds of spiders. The big-eyed jumping spiders shown on page 6 are a favorite of mine. They are just adorable.

jumping-spider-101Doesn’t it look like it has eyelashes?

Super Spiders is perfect for future arachnologists, but might also be useful for children who fall closer to Miss Moffett. Often learning about something makes it less frightening, especially insects and spiders.

Looking for books for a unit on spiders? Try our list of Spider Books for Kids at the Science Books for Kids website.

spider-books-202x300

Other titles in the Walk on the Wild Side series include Amazing Elephants, Mighty Lions, Powerful Polar Bears and Shocking Sharks.

Reading level:  1-3
Series: Read Me!: Walk on the Wild Side
Paperback: 32 pages
Publisher: Raintree (August 14, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1406260886
ISBN-13: 978-1406260885

Disclosures: These book were provided by the publisher for review purposes. Also, I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at not extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.

 

Come visit the STEM Friday blog each week to find more great Science, Technology, Engineering and Math books.

Posted in Nonfiction, STEM Friday | Tagged , | 1 Comment

How Does a Seed Sprout?: And Other Questions About Plants

Nonfiction superstar author Melissa Stewart has a new book out, How Does a Seed Sprout?: And Other Questions About Plants (Good Question!), illustrated by Carol Schwartz.

Written in a lively question-and-answer format, this book covers basic questions, such as the life cycle of plants, as well as more complex questions, such as why do leaves come in different shapes.

The illustrations are a mix of lovely watercolors by Carol Schwartz and high-quality color photographs.

How does a seed sprout? If the conditions are right, the root develops first and then the shoot grows upwards. This video shows the germination of radish seeds, which germinate relatively quickly. (Note: the music is loud and lively, so you might want to adjust your speakers.)

 

Can you see the root hairs spreading out from the main root? Cool!

Towards the right are three light-colored objects that look like seeds, but they do not germinate. Ask your children why the seeds might not have grown like the others. Perhaps the conditions were not quite right for those particular seeds to grow. Seeds must have the right moisture (not too much and not too little), the right temperature and they most be free of diseases. It is also possible that those particular seeds were just not ready. Some seeds need a resting period before they can grow, or must have the seed coat worn down or softened before they can start the germination process. It is possible they will never grow. As Stewart emphasizes, not all seeds grow into plants.

How Does a Seed Sprout? is a great introduction to the wonderful world of plants. It would be useful as a science or gardening reference, as well as for units on plants or life cycles. Pick up a copy and be inspired to explore the world of plants!

Looking for more books about plants or seeds? Try our list of children’s books about seeds and our list of Gardening/plant science books for kids.

Pinterest-gardening-right

You also might want to try our Gardening/science for Kids Pinterest board.

Age Range: 7 and up
Grade Level: 1 and up
Series: Good Question!
Paperback: 32 pages
Publisher: Sterling Children’s Books (January 7, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1454906715
ISBN-13: 978-1454906711

 

Disclosures:  This book was won in a contest. I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at not extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.

 Nonfiction Monday is a blogging celebration of nonfiction books for kids. Join us at the new Nonfiction Monday blog.

Posted in Nonfiction, Nonfiction Monday Review, Picture book- nonfiction | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Let’s Build

One of our favorite authors, Sue Fliess, has a new picture book out, Let’s Build, with illustrations by Miki Sakamoto.

Sue truly gets young children, plus has a real flare for rhyming text. The text is fast-paced and gently humorous, as you can see in the book trailer:

Yes, hardware stores do seem to go on for miles! (Although certain DIY types don’t seem to mind that.)

Let’s Build is a quick, lively read for a slow summer day when the kids are looking for something to do. Perhaps it will inspire them to build their own “fort” out of blankets, chairs, and couch cushions.

Other activity suggestions:

For those who want to give something more concrete at try, This Old House has instructions for building a fort they say can be constructed in about three hours. Yes, you could build a fort in a day!

Danae has a great Pinterest Board of Tree Houses and Forts (plus other play structures. Check out the A-frame made out of wooden doors!

Age Range: 3 – 8 years
Grade Level: Preschool – 3rd
Hardcover: 24 pages
Publisher: Two Lions (May 6, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1477847243
ISBN-13: 978-1477847244

Disclosures:  This book was supplied by the publisher for review purposes. I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at not extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.

 Nonfiction Monday is a blogging celebration of nonfiction books for kids. Join us at the new Nonfiction Monday blog.

Posted in Nonfiction, Nonfiction Monday Review, Picture book- nonfiction, Poetry | Tagged , | 1 Comment