Review: Time For Kids Big Book of How

 

Title: Time for Kids Big Book of How

Author: Editors of Time for Kids

Publisher: Time

ISBN: 978-1603201841

 

 

From Amazon:

TIME For Kids The Big Book of How presents kids 8-12 years old with answers to the kinds of intriguing questions that appeal to their sense of curiosity. Colorful graphics, spectacular photos and clear, engaging diagrams will help answer such questions as: How does a chameleon change colors?; How can a person survive in the jungle?; How do you build a teepee?; How do diamonds form?; How do light sticks work?; How are 3-D movies made?; How do astronauts train for a space mission?; How do we get cavities?; How does solar energy work?

Divided by subject area-from animals, the human body and technology to sports, food and green issues-kids will discover the background behind the questions through the book’s photos, diagrams and art as well as its clear text. Of course, TIME For Kids goes beyond just answering the question, and engages kids with hands-on activities at the end of each chapter that bring life to a topic or idea they just read about. For example: If in the technology chapter kids learn how an airplane flies, the "How to" spread might include step-by-step instructions about how to fold a paper airplane or create a rotating helicopter. TIME For Kids The Big Book of How is a must-have book to satisfy the most curious of kids.

Review:

I don’t usually read many non-fiction books, but this one had me a little intrigued.  The cover blurbs of “How do elephants communicate?” and “How to keep your computer safe from viruses?” certainly grabbed my attention.  I was interested to see how the book was put together, and how the information was presented to the intended audience of younger readers.  And, hey, even I enjoy learning new things.

I love the way the book is set up.  It’s divided into chapters, and each explains a topic of interest.  My favorite is the first chapter, Animals.  The chapters are further divided into 2-page spreads that explore smaller sub-topics, like “How do Animals See at Night” and “How Does a Spider Spin its Web.”  To re-enforce each concept, the pages are packed with vivid, full-color photographs and illustrations.  There are even activities at the end of every chapter, so young readers engage, hands-on, with the topics of discussion.  Who doesn’t need to learn how to make a compass?  Or how to make ice cream?  You can even learn how to mark your territory at the end of the Animal chapter, and tell me, who doesn’t want to do that??

By keeping the explanations concise and meaningful, it’s hard to become bored while flipping through the book.  The narrative is easy to understand, and the visuals make for a memorable read.  Though the book is stuffed with information, it doesn’t overwhelm, and it never feels like a chore to read through the subject matter.  This would be the perfect book to have on hand for those rainy summer days when your kids are stuck inside and need something to fight a bout of boredom.  It will even keep finicky adults occupied with the broad range of topics included in this fun book.

Grade: A-

Review copy provided by publisher