Dover Publications is currently offering two different educational series that are fun and educational, and I was able to review a book from each. The first book comes from a series called BOOST. The BOOST series offers a wide variety of entertaining and educational books for children. Each series is designed for specific grade levels. Plus, each title comes with a free Teacher’s Manual filled with engaging reading, speaking, listening, and language lessons. The second book I was able to review comes from a series called The Tabletop Scientist. This series focuses on encouraging young minds to explore the principles of science. Whether students learn about water, light, air, or sound, they will absolutely enjoy the illustrations, experiments, and demonstrations the book provides.
My First Human Body coloring book, designed for first and second grade, is far more than a simple coloring book, so don’t let the title confuse you. Instead of merely providing color-worthy pictures of say, the heart, brain, and stomach, My First Human Body provides page after page of illustrations depicting how the human body looks inside. Even more, each page contains small captions that explain what the pictures show. For example, let’s say your student or child is at the beginning of the book and learning about the diffe
rent kinds of cells in our bodies. One page contains a nerve, bone, muscle, skin, and blood cell. Even more, each pages builds off of the previous. Everything is taught in continuity!
Can I reveal my favorite parts of My First Human Body coloring book? First, it is Common Core aligned and explicitly states the standards being emphasized on each page! This is such a helpful tool for teachers (especially newer teachers who may feel less “brave” to develop CC aligned material on their own). Second, while the book is very informative, it remains grade and age appropriate. The language used is kid-friendly and the illustrations are not too busy or detailed. However, the illustrations do offer a good sample of what to expect inside a human body.
The progression in the book is nicely timed; you can spend an hour a week or so (how often you decide to teach this part of science) discussing common themes of the human body, and using this book as both a reference and teaching tool. There is room for discussion on each page, and some pages offer explicit questions you can ask your students. So, while using the book, it’s really up to you how in-depth the learning process can be!
The BOOST series offers teachers’ manuals to enhance learning experiences for students. So that’s always a plus! And again, if I was a first year teacher (or any teacher not 100% confident in teaching this material that needs to be CC aligned) I’d jump on getting these materials because not only are you following Common Core (which, many of us absolutely have to follow), you are also providing a fun and educational learning experience for your kids!
Let’s jump ahead a few grades and discuss the second book I reviewed:
If you’re in search of a good, educational, informative, yet fun book that teaches the science of water, you should definitely take a look at The Science of Water. Why? Because it’s an awesome teaching tool, in my opinion! Of course, the book discusses some water basics, like the water cycle and different properties of water, but, it really does much more!
The Science of Water contains a lot of projects, for example. Doesn’t making a raincloud sound fun? How about melting a mini iceberg, or making dirty water cleaner? The Science of Water even explores water density and how different objects have different densities. And, each project is clearly explained with photographs illustrating what needs to be done. So, your students/child can follow right along.
Speaking of illustrations, I don’t think there’s one piece of blank, white paper on any page. Each page is colorful, science-themed, and stimulating. Some pictures show middle-schoolers completing science projects, for example. There are illustrations of various water processes. Even the background images on each page show something connecting to the science of water. Suffice it to say, this isn’t your average textbook, and in my opinion, that makes it fun.
Based on the language and vocabulary used in The Science of Water, I’d recommend exposing middle-schoolers to the content. Plus, the concepts also seem more appropriate for a slightly older student.