Z has always been a pretty self-sufficient kid who likes to figure out things for himself. However, lately he has wanted to learn about bigger and more complicated things. I was excited to get the chance to review The Handy Answer Book for Kids (and Parents), hoping that it could help me answer some of the tough questions that are going to come up over the next few years. This is the Second Edition of this book, compiled by Gina Misiroglu.
The book focuses on science, engineering, political science and daily life. There are color photographs and diagrams throughout the book and key vocabulary words are in bold. Answers vary from a few sentences to some half-page long entries. Most of the answers are written at an upper elementary to middle grade comprehension level but parents can easily read and re-word answers for younger children.
One of Z's recent interests is the solar system and this book starts out with a great (and currently accurate) diagram of the eight planets and their orbits. Some of the answers are so simplistic that they are a bit inaccurate (the sun is made of plasma, not gas -- although try explaining plasma to a six year old) but they have enough information to be a launching pad for children who want to learn more. I like the section on weights and measures--a discipline that always confuses me--and now I can figure out my weight in "stone" -- not that I would share it with you!
This book really is "handy" and would be a great tool to have around the house. Even in this age of Google and Wikipedia, a quick reference book is never a bad idea.
Discovering questions we didn't even know to ask,
K and Z
Support our site and buy The Handy Answer Book for Kids (and Parents) on Amazon or find it at your local library. We received our copy from a publicist for review.