Monday, May 26, 2008

Non-Fiction Monday: Country Explorers

I had the chance to review three books from a very cool series, perfect for a Non-Fiction Monday post. The Country Explorers series, published by Lerner, includes approximately twelve titles, ranging all over the world. I was lucky enough to read Egypt, Indian, and Japan and loved each one. They are written in such a cool way, not at all “textbook” and will definitely hold a young reader’s interest.

Each title is like a short, whirlwind trip to the specified country. The reader gets to learn about the landscape, culture, people, and much more. In India, I learned about different food dishes, such as dal, and about different clothing styles. In Egypt, I learned about the pyramids and the holiday known as Sham al-Nessim. In Japan, I learned about Japanese comics and the dog statue of Hachiko. Let’s just say, I learned quite a bit from these little books!

The books are filled with photographs of the country and its people, short language lessons, and a section for specific facts about the country. The flag, capital, major rivers/landforms, animals, and population are all covered. There is also a glossary, index, and a listing of additional resources for those doing reports.

Even as an adult, I still managed to learn a lot from the different types of facts presented in the books. I enjoyed how aspects such as food and clothing were covered, along with religion, language, and other typical country facts. It was nice to read a book on a country that was dry or a textbook. I think kids will get a lot of use out of these books for school work, but they can also be fun to read with parents as well, as the kids start to learn about new cultures.

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