October 27, 2010


By Caroline Harris

Kingfisher, 2006

Science Kids series

(in new series to come titled The Discover Science Series)

ISBN: 978-0-7534-6315-4

Grades 1-4


“What is weather? Weather is all of the changes that happen in the air. Water, air, and heat from the Sun work together to make weather.”

Weather is an appealing 48 page book that defines and explains the phenomena of how forces work on the earth to create weather. It delves into the reasons for weather, the specifics created by the sun, air, and water, and the specific events that occur from these forces. From the sun to the water cycle to weather forecasting, this book has it all—neatly compacted into large type, bold photographs, and short text boxes. New vocabulary is found in the border at the bottom of each page.

The book has an extensive table of contents, an index, and four activities relating to weather. Information beside each photo adds to the body of facts presented. The photos are big and bright, adding an air of accessibility to the information. The tornado on the front cover is sure to attract readers, but the facts will keep them reading. I especially liked the activities at the back.

This book is part of Science Kids series, but will be included in the newer Discover Science Series from this publisher. I found the information about it in the current series list on Kingfisher.


Choose one aspect of weather to follow for two weeks (temperature, humidity, highest wind speed). Create a chart to record your information—maybe a classroom chart or one posted at home. After two weeks, record the data on a line graph to show the changes occurring over time. Look for any trend and write a paragraph summarizing the data from the chart.

This site will give you the graph grid.

This site shows you how to create your own graph.

Roberta at Growing with Science has a terrific list of activities and a great vocabulary list.

National science standard: understanding science inquiry; changes in earth and sky

Book provided by publisher


June 2, 2010


By Mari Schuh

Capstone Press, 2010

ISBN #978-1-4296-3433-5


Grades Pre-K-2

“Hurricanes are huge, strong ocean storms. They can bring big waves, strong wind, and heavy rain to shore.”

Told in simple language, this book explains hurricanes on a beginning reader’s level. It follows the definition of a hurricane with an explanation about how it is formed, how meteorologists follow it (using that term), and how to stay safe and prepared for a hurricane. A section in the front matter explains the use of the difficult vocabulary unique to the study of hurricanes and the possible need for assisting the early reader.

This is a good book to introduce the concept of these often violent storms, especially at the beginning of hurricane season. With the recent, strong hurricane in Galveston, Texas, and the devastating New Orleans hurricane having been in the news, it’s a way to show what is happening from the science point of view. Knowledge is power, and is a way to explain a frightening storm.

While limited in word count for this level, I’d like to have seen something about evacuation as a means for staying safe and possibly something about the chances of hurricanes hitting cities that might allay the fears of those children in the hurricane zones.

This book is a great start for those kids interested in science and is one in a series of six books about natural disasters occurring on our earth.

Activity 1

When a hurricane develops, use this map to track the storm. This will introduce the concepts of latitude and longitude as well as follow the storm’s path. Discuss the locations of the hurricanes and use the map to identify where they storms begin.

The FEMA site has excellent children’s activities that will explain and increase their knowledge of these sorts of storms.

Activity 2

Look up the current list of hurricane names. Look up the retired names and discuss why they won’t be used again.

Activity 3

Being prepared is one way to lessen the worries of a young child. Use this site to create your own hurricane safety plan.  If you don’t live in a hurricane zone, do a simulated plan.

Visit Nonfiction Monday at Charlotte’s Library on June 7.

National Science Standard: changes in environment

Book provided by publisher


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