Friday, May 16, 2014

The Universe by Tom DeRosa and Carolyn Reeves

The Universe by Tom DeRosa and Carolyn Reeves is  a  fully illustrated, full color - 88 page, soft cover science text for elementary students.  Every possible experiment having to do with space and the universe is included in this book.  Information about everything from the moon, the sun, planets, comets, flight, telescopes and more is included in this comprehensive book.  As with any text book for students, there is a glossary of terms and a question answer opportunity with the "Investigative Problems" feature with each section to reinforce the material learned.  This impressive book contains high quality photos, graphics and charts.  Based on the cover alone, I was very surprised to see the amount of information contained in this simple looking text.

Although marketed as an elementary text for the home schooled market, this ambitious  book easily fits into the popular non fiction science genre for young pre-teen readers and elementary students. This stand alone book need not be confined to the classroom.  Illustrated with full color photos, diagrams, charts and illustrations, this book is sure to hold the attention of any young reader. Some of the photo spreads are so impressive they are like works of art. The sharp, crisp image of outerspace depicted on page 11might not be scientifically plausible, but it is beautiful and sure to spark the imaginations of young minds.   The beautiful photograph of the Crab Nebula on page 80 is sharp in quality.  Hands on "Investigation" pages as well as  experiments are dispersed throughout the text of the book. There are 20 total experiments included which would make this book a perfect lab manual for an elementary science course.  In my opinion, this student text, fits well into the ever popular, emerging non fiction science genre as recreational or educational reading for any  reader.  As for using it as a text, perhaps this is more suited  as an additional resource to a more thorough science text- it is good way to bring to life, the subject of Earth Science, and space. 

This book is marketed towards the homeschooling, Christian family.  Reading through this text, you will find discussion of the creation and the age of the earth- a point of contention between secular evolutionists and creationists.  Presented in an academic and professional format, this book ties together faith and science, giving much needed credibility to biblical creation without sacrificing academic scholarship.  It is hard to comprehend the amount of scholarship and research contained in this 88 page indepth textbook.  While written for a childrens' curriculum, I am sure parents and educators will enjoy this book as well.  This book leaves no stone unturned and is certain to answer countless questions about a host of science topics that go far beyond the topic of space and the universe.  This edition is part of the educational series of elementary science books, "Investigate the Possibilities". 
This particular edition is part of a three volume set- including a Teacher's Guide, and Student Journal.  Although the original text was analogous to a lab text, the intended purpose of the Student Journal is to accompany the main text to serve as a workbook or lab book.  There are 20 activities coinciding with the main text, and plenty of writing space for the student.  The questions provided add extra opportunities to learn the material. The teacher's guide is like any other teacher's guidebook with a the student text pages reproduced with guided discussion, and objectives spelled out to help the teacher or home educator. 

 As a blogger for New Leaf publishers I received a copy of this book by Master Books and imprint of New Leaf publishers for the purpose of writing this review.

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