Every year, we buy my daughter a whole bunch of books from the library, where we can get children’s books for ten cents each (provided that they are softcover). We usually get her twenty or thirty of them for this extremely cheap cost; this year we were even able to get her some wonderful books to read when she’s older, like Ramona Forever and Bridget to Terabithia. Among this year’s books were lots of science-based editions, since my daughter loves nature, animals, and science in general. One of the books was Moira Butterfield’s 1000 Facts About the Earth.
The book is thin, so you have to wonder how on Earth are there 1,000 facts inside. Don’t worry about having a thousand tiny facts crammed into the material; instead, each fact fits very well in an attractive arrangement with full-color illustrations and child-friendly strange but true facts. Nearly any topic that children are interested is covered, from space to dinosaurs, oceans to the weather, plants to polar regions and more. Simple diagrams and pictographs are portrayed for children to easily plot the center of the Earth or the inside of a volcano, as well as the epicenter of an earthquake.
Rain forest animals and people are included in the book as are ways to help these areas and the earth itself. My daughter was interested in discovering that the cloves and cashews we use in crafts and cooking come from the rain forests. I would have loved corresponding experiments or activities to go along with each section in the book, but it’s already do full of information that it probably would have turned each two-page spread into a three-page section instead. The information is also very basic and introductory; if you want to do an in-depth exploration, you’ll definitely want to check out additional materials.
Science buffs will find much of the information they crave in the book, while homeschoolers can find nearly all of the material they need for their first couple of years of science education. In fact, one single page has so much information that it could be broken down into a week’s worth of curriculum if desired. Add a couple of experiments, field trips, and videos, and you’ve got your science materials set! I recommend The Usborne Book of Science Experiments as well as The Potato Chip Science Book, our two current favorites; you can also find just about anything you want to do at Instructables or Youtube.