Sunday, April 04, 2010

Looking for a Good, Interesting Earth Science Book

Springtime just gets me all revved up for fun outdoor experiments!

I've got several of Janice VanCleave's science experiment books, and one I'm reading right now is called, "Earth Science for Every Kid." Her experiments are simple and some look really fun. But, I find that there is very little in the books to put things into context. This book in particular is aimed at the younger elementary-school ages (IMO), and I think that while the short prep time and experiment times are good for some, it almost makes it not worth the effort to do when it's over in 5 minutes. I guess it depends on everyone's interest level.

Another book I have been looking at is, "Ace Your Ecology and Environmental Science Project," and while we're not planning to enter any projects, I thought I could get some cool ideas from it. This book includes more explanations for why you would want to do the experiement, and a longer discussion of what it's all about. It seems to be aimed at the upper elementary-school ages and maybe middle school as well.

So, I'm looking for suggestions of books that deal with earth science and other topics covered in these types of books. I'd like to understand better why we would be doing the project so I can explain it to the kids. I know they wouldn't be interested in having me just read the book to them, so I need to understand as much as possible to make it all fun and relevant. Thanks in advance for your recommendations!

Oh, and I just remembered--I was hoping to hear some reviews from people who have used the Brock Magiscope. Is it worth the money? If you haven't used it or think it wasn't so great, what do you suggest? Strong magnifying glasss or expensive microscope?

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dbmamaz said...

Hey, I'm hoping to do lots of experiments over the summer, including one of Jan's books. I dont have any specific suggestions, but one thing I've done is either search amazon for good books, and then see if my library has them, or (often faster) search my library on line by subject and reading level, and then check amazon to see if the book is worth getting. Except amazon has few reviews for older books.

also, I bought an expensive microscope for holiday present for the teen, but its been a bit luke-warm so far. Although he was excited last time i made him check our creek water, becuase something was moving!