Book Review~ Weird & Wonderful Creations

From the Made by God series, Weird & Wonderful Creations, 4 books in 1, introduces children to a variety of creatures. Written on a second grade reading level, the four books included are: 1-Spiders, snakes, bees, and bats, 2- Big bugs, little bugs, 3- Sea creatures, 4- Poisonous, smelly, and amazing plants. The reader learns about eagles, tarantulas, butterflies, jellyfish, sea horses, sea turtles, mushrooms, the Venus flytrap, redwood trees, and more.





The detailed and clear photographs take up at least half of each page. There are usually 5 lines of text per page and plenty of white space.  The side bars offer more facts about the species such as, “Sea horses make clicking noises when they eat” and “The Goliath beetle’s leathery wings can be larger than a sparrow’s.”

This hardback book provides over 200 facts in its 110 pages. It is nicely bound and makes a good nonfiction addition to a children’s library. Even though he can’t read yet, my three-year-old enjoys the pictures and asking about the creatures. Since we already own Curious Creatures, 4 books in 1, I am glad to have a copy of this book in our collection, too.

4 out of 5 stars

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion through the BookLook Blogger program.


Book Review ~ Curious Creatures, 4 books in 1

As a former elementary media specialist, I enjoy reading and reviewing children’s books. When I saw Curious Creatures, 4 books in 1 available for review, I requested it upon release. I looked forward to reading it and to seeing my son’s reaction. While he’s not yet 3 years old, he enjoys looking at books, having us read to him, and animals fascinate him. I’m glad I requested this book.

This is a quality nonfiction book, written on a second grade reading level.  It aligns to the Common Core ELA standards, if that’s important to you.  The 4 books you receive in this volume are: Rainforest Friends, Jungle Beasts, Polar Pals, and Curious Creatures Down Under. Topics include some expected animals like the koala, elephant, and polar bear. I didn’t expect to read about the anaconda (ew!), the echidna, or the Arctic tern.

There are many photographs, and almost all of them are close-ups of the animal. The page layout provides plenty of white space, good color that isn’t garish, and the side bars feature other interesting facts.

There aren’t any highly religious descriptions. The author includes a few statements like, “God gave (this animal a feature)” and it is part of the Made by God series. In keeping with the second grade level, the descriptions are simple about size, habitat, food, basic geography, and some facts about the animals’ activities and / or traits.

The one complaint I have is that the book smells weird.  I don’t know if it’s the ink, the paper, or the combination, but it’s a strong smell, and I can’t read the book for very long periods.  Leaving it propped open has helped a bit, but it may take a while for it to dissipate.

4 out of 5 stars

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Book Look Blogger program in exchange for my honest review.

A Bit of Trivia ~ Potato Chips

Potato chips have been available for 160 years. They were invented by George Crum, a chef at a lodge in New York City. A customer complained that the French Fries they served were too thick. Crum made thinner fries, but they were unsatisfactory. In an effort to annoy the customer, he sliced the potatoes too thinly to use a fork. Surprisingly, the customer loved them, and potato chips were invented!

Food for Thought … Curriculum

I came across this quotation today, and it struck a nerve.  There is so much more to learning and living than just for a test.

“I have never understood the importance of having children memorize battle dates. It seems like such a waste of mental energy. Instead, we could teach them important subjects such as How the Mind Works, How to Handle Finances, How to Invest Money for Financial Security, How to be a Parent, How to Create Good Relationships, and How to Create and Maintain Self-Esteem and Self-Worth. Can you imagine what a whole generation of adults would be like if they had been taught these subjects in school along with their regular curriculum?” — Louise L. Hay

Your thoughts?