Posts tagged ‘weather’

EARTH, OUR PLANET

Planet Earth! A Kids Book About Planet Earth-Fun Facts & Pictures About Our Oceans, Mountains, Rivers,Deserts, Endangered Species & More

Written by Alexander G. Michaels

PlanetEarth,pic

The title of this post is much shorter than the name of the book, but in fact the author provides a concise guide to all those things in an e book of less than fifty pages. Targeted for children in the early elementary grades and written in fairly simple language, this guide sets forth basic information combined with beautiful photographs. It can be a asset to the science section of the classroom as well as serve as a quick reference book or starting point for more research. The author might consider releasing a paper edition for libraries and print book lovers.

Michaels begins with the planet’s history, characteristics, composition, and place in solar system. He next outlines the geographic regions of land and water and gives details about well known examples. The section on fun facts is sure to be a favorite among children; it provides a vast compendium of information in sentence form. For example, each winter approximately one septillion snow crystals drop from the sky or that 75% of the earth’s animals could be extinct within the next three hundred years. Michaels concludes with some ideas on how we can preserve the planet for our descendants.

I have to admit that I learned quite a few things from this book. While I knew that most of the Earth’s surface is water, I was not aware that only 3% of the water on earth is fresh water. Did you know that the largest desert in the world is in Antarctica? Where can you find most of the Earth’s gold? How are mountains, volcanoes and rivers formed? There are lots of surprises for adults as well as the children who pick up this book.

Take a look at this beautiful guide to our planet and share it with your children. Michaels has written a whole series of books, including one on the solar system, endangered species, and dinosaurs. I plan on taking a look at those as well.

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MIDNIGHT EXPRESS

The Flying Train

Written and illustrated by Janaki Sooriyarachchi

TheFlyingTrainpicThis book is a charming tale that will appeal to young children as a bedtime read aloud. Children six and up will enjoy reading it for the adventure and learning element. It is a fantasy trip every young boy and girl would love to have the opportunity to experience. While the illustrations are stylized, they are bold, large, and extremely colorful making them appealing to a very young child. Even though the train is moving fast and the ride is a wild one, this does not come across as a scary story. It is interesting to note that the children are worried about what their mom would say about not having coats to keep them warm at night and catching a cold when out in a rainstorm. Dolly warns Timmy, “Don’t look directly into the sun or you will hurt your eyes.” So the author displays a parent’s perspective as well as the child’s viewpoint.

At the beginning of the story Timmy and his sister Nelly are in bed sleeping with their teddy bear and doll beside them. On the floor lying next to them the family dog and cat are sound asleep. Suddenly, they are awakened by the barking of the dog and the sound of a train. The flying train arrives at the window urging them to come aboard. Their trip involves some fantasy elements like fairies flying through the sky and little grey men that look like robots waving to them from Mars.  On the other hand, the author manages to introduce a lot of knowledge about weather, the sun and the planets. The siblings learn that it is very cold in the sky, that the moon reflects the light of the sun, the sun gives us light and keeps the planet warm, and that there are many other stars in the sky that are really stars like “our” sun. Their flying train is out of control and crashes into a rain cloud. The children are frightened by the thunder and wind. They see all the planets revolving around the sun. As the out of control train nears the sun, Timmy and Nelly can feel scorching heat from the ball of fire. How will they be able to escape? Will they find a way to return to earth or are they doomed to be lost in space forever?

This book is available as a pdf on freekidsbooks.org or may be purchased online from amazon.com.

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