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Non-Fiction Picks -Winter


For years now, I have felt that 20 - 30 % of the reading public truly enjoys reading traditional Non Fiction literature. Often this is not well received in the classroom K-12 and our children are told they need to be reading a novel, not an encyclopedia.

Many of our children grow up thinking they are non readers because they desire to read about science, or statistics, or history. We as their parents need to explain to our children, who love to read non fiction that they are readers, too. They just enjoy their literature from a more fact driven point of view. Enjoy the following books, I do!


For Ages 2-5 years old, maybe older for Reports

play bac seasons book coverPlay Bac Publishing, "Incredible Insects" and "Seasons." incredible ocean book cover

The creators of Brain Quest have a new line of books with exceptional photographs and wonderfully interesting and unique facts about nature and its animals. Now available in September Incredible Insects. Look at the previous books, Incredible Earth and Incredible Animals. The more I see and read from this new publisher, the more I like their books. The preschool books, Colors, Numbers Letters,and Shapes are brilliantly done and formatted for younger kids, too! And their sticker books are some of best I have ever seen such as EyeLike Sticker Farms or Gardens, each $6.99

$12.95 from Play Bac Publishing

For Ages 4-7 years old

Geoff Waring's Science series with Oscar the Cat-Oscar & the Snail- A book about Things that We Use- and Oscar & Cricket- A book about Moving & Rolling.

Geoff Waring is author/illustrator of a wonderful science series for the very young (pre-school) of our children. Geoff Waring lives in London, England and has 12 Oscar science books available in England. These science books introduce our children to core science concepts through engaging stories, fresh illustrations and supplemental activities, too! This series of science books provides numerous ways to start our kids learning about their world and the physical ways our planet works around us!

$7.99 paperback from Candlewick for four books, hardcover only for new books available in 2010

For Ages 6-10 years oldbig cats book cover

Seymour Simon's Cats, & Dogs, and Global Warming-

Seymour Simon has written more than 200 children's science books. His books are always informative and have detailed photographs which give you pause at their beauty and reveal awe moment. Your detail loving youngster will spend hours going over page by page. The photographs are inspiring and endlessly fascinating for the future scientists in your family. Seymour Simon is a science writer comfortable with almost any subject (see his Human Body or Weather books). They are written in a mid fourth grade reading level .Seymour Simon's two new books about our pet cats and dogs are out now, and the Global Warming will be out in 2010. Please consider ordering them both for your school library.

$6.99 paperback from HarperCollins

For Ages 8-12 years oldlife in the wild by pamela turner award winner 2008

tree kangaroo book coverSy Montgomery's and Nic Bishop's Saving the Ghost of the Mountains- Snow Leopards in Mongolia (scientists in the field series)

Snow Leopards in Mongolia is the newest in this series about Scientists in the Field with informative details about the status of animals, plants and ecosystems all around the world.This combination of Sy Montgomery's language, and research, and Nic Bishop's photography is worth every penny spent on these hardcover books at $18.99 each.

Pamela Turner's book, A Life in the Wild, has won the Golden Kite Non Fiction Award for 2009. It is still available in hardcover at $21.95 from Farrar, Straus & Giroux. She is a science writer who non fiction readers need to know about and discover with wondrous delight.

Three other books in this series, Scientists in the Field, have also won awards and they are: Quest for the Tree Kangaroo ($ 8.99 paperback soon) and Tarantula Scientist by Sy Montgomery, and photographer Nic Bishop. ($7.99 paperback available now) Both from Houghton Mifflin Books/Sandpiper Books
Frog Scientist,& Saving the Ghost of the Mountain-Snow Leopards both $18.00 hardcover only, from Houghton Mifflin Books now available.

FANDEX from Workman Press priced $10.00 to $13.00 make wonderful gifts to give and receive. They are full of unknown facts about each topic and have a an unique perspective and point of view kids and parents will enjoy together.

For Ages 10-13 years old-VS.

Willaim Gerstalle's Whoosh Boom Splat: Garage Warriors Guide to Projectile Shooterswhoosh boom splat book cover

This title says it all, and if your children are anything like mine are, use extreme caution when performing these experiments. My son loved his previous books, Backyard Ballistics and the Art of the Catapult. He built a working potato cannon and we still have it. This book has 160 pages full of projects such as Jam Jar Jet or a Marshmallow shooter. Its a great way to actively learn mechanical engineering theories and laws. Physics is an active component in its projects too! But please enjoy yourself in your quest for science knowledge and fun. These books would make a great gift and are very useful for summer vacation activities.

$15.99 paperback from Three Rivers Press

For Middle School & High School and Up

The Elements-A Visual Exploration of Every Known Atom in the Universe- by Theodore Gray - Photos by Theodore Gray & Nick Mann

Theodore Gray author of Mad Scientist, has created fascinating eye opening never before seen photographic collection of the 118 elements of our Periodic Table with an educational and entertaining approach that is uniquely Theodore Gray in his delivery and discussion of each element and its makeup. I wish I had seen this book while my kids were in middle school or high school. This book once seen, will not stay in your house because everyone will ask to borrow it for very long periods of time. Your child's teachers will want to have their own copies of this book. Please read the text carefully because every element two page spread will have surprise sentence or two which are very refreshing and insightful as well as humorous and entertaining for us arm chair scientists.This book is worth very penny!

$29.99 from Black Dog & Leventhal