A Peek Inside Time For Kids Big Book of What?



Title: Time for Kids Big Book of What?


Publisher: Time



Did you know that herring communicate through farting? Yeah, neither did I, until I starting reading Time For Kids Big Book of What?  I love these Time books, because not only are they packed with huge, glossy photos, they are filled with interesting and obscure facts.  I will never forget that there is actually a fish that communicates by making a high-pitched buzzing sound that comes out of their butt.  I bet most kids who read this book won’t forget that, either!

The book is divided into chapters that cover topics that range from animals to food to sports.  It even offers up good advice, in the event that you encounter a bear during a neighborhood stroll or become lost while hiking.  I thought the Survival chapter needed to be longer, because, let’s face it, you never know when you will randomly run across a poisonous snake or get trapped outside during a blizzard.  And with these record-breaking high temperatures that we have been suffering with this summer, we all need to know about keeping hydrated, and what happens when we don’t consume enough liquids and do become dehydrated.

When I was a kid, I loved going to the library and conducting research.  I even pestered my parents to let me take an essay writing class when my brother was forced to because he didn’t like writing papers, and hated going to the library.  What better way to teach someone how to write a research paper than making them take a two week class during summer vacation?  He did not enjoy the experience, but I did.  This book is a more subtle way to get kids to learn some interesting facts, without the hassle of a library visit or the use of a card catalog.  Now, just so you don’t think that I’m only picking on the kids, I will take this book to work and share some of the more obscure facts with my co-workers.  Several of us start the day with a  trivia question, and this will be a fun addition to our daily ritual.

So – who would enjoy this book? Anyone who likes learning new things.  There is a great variety of topics, too, to make sure that everyone has something interesting to learn.

Rating – Fun!

Review copy provided by publisher

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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.


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