By Joanne Mattern
Capstone Press, 2011
Fact Finders Series
“We all call Earth home. Of all the planets and other bodies in the solar system, Earth is the only place that supports life. That makes our planet one of a kind!”
Our Earth introduces the planet we know so well in its place within our solar system. It continues with the formation of the solar system and the reasons Earth can support life. This first section explains orbit, axis, rotation, and revolution, and then begins to explore inner Earth.
The remaining chapters of the book fill in information about the land, the oceans, the atmosphere, and the biomes on Earth. The final chapter addresses photosynthesis, weather, and the water cycle, all parts of the processes that allow life to thrive here.
Our Earth is an excellent survey of our planet and a great introduction to each of these individual processes that take place. Photographs and diagrams add information and highlighted vocabulary is defined at the bottom of the page where it was introduced. The text is reader-friendly and the book has an appealing layout that shows the information well. Fun facts are sprinkled on some of the pages. Back matter includes a glossary, a read more section, Internet sites, and an index. Joanne Mattern does an excellent job with science subjects and it’s a fun book to read. The book hits on a number of science concepts—all in one book. In all its complexities, who can get tired of reading about the Earth and its amazing processes?
Choose a topic from the book and find out more about that subject. You might want to investigate plate tectonics, the water cycle, the carbon cycle (not in book but interesting!), Earth’s atmosphere, the moon, the Sun, or photosynthesis. Make your own poster or display to share the information you learned.
Choose another planet. Then look up information about that planet and create a chart or Venn diagram to compare and contrast the Earth and that planet. This activity could be done as a group project, too.
NASA’s site has planet information. Click on the planet and then go down to the read more tab.
National Science Standards: Earth and the solar system; Earth Materials and Systems; Plate Tectonics and Large-Scale System Interactions; The Roles of Water in Earth’s Surface Processes; Weather and Climate
Book provided by Capstone