Reading Maps

978-0-531-26006-7. ea vol: 48p. (A True Book). charts. chron. diags. further reading. glossary. index. maps. photos. websites. Children's Press. 2012. PLB $29; pap. $6.95.
Gr 2–4—These books advertise that everything you read in them is "All New All True!" Although the material is important and updated, the information is not new and it is not engaging. Maps includes the compass rose, orientation, latitude and longitude, legend, and online maps. Charts discusses graphic organizers, spreadsheets, tables, personal planners, line graphs, bar graphs, pie charts, scatter plots, flow charts, and note-taking charts. Diagrams covers Venn diagrams, cluster maps, problem-solving diagrams, t-charts, research-paper organizers, persuasive-letter organizers, maps, drawings, and cycle diagrams. Both Charts and Diagrams have several "Try It" pages that give readers an opportunity to create some of the examples being discussed-these could be helpful in the classroom. There is a "Big Truth!" spread in each book, such as a chart for March Madness and Florence Nightingale's rose diagram-although it is not obvious why it is a big truth. Layout includes plenty of photos, illustrations, and graphics. There are a few captions that don't go with the pictures; for example, the cover of Diagrams shows a layered drawing of a volcano, but the caption reads, "Diagrams have been found in cave paintings." Despite the minor issues, these books provide solid curriculum support if material on the subjects is needed.—Stephanie Farnlacher, Trace Crossings Elementary School, Hoover, AL

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