Encyclopedia of Earth and Physical Sciences

Overview

Appropriate for middle school through highschool students, this reference comprises 13 slim, abundantly illustrated volumes, each measuring 9.25x12". About 40 entries in each volume (except the 13th, which has the index) are arranged alphabetically and range in length from a couple pages to six or seven pages; they encompass concepts, terms, people, and discipline overviews pertinent to the earth and physical sciences. The page design integrates color photos and boxed features of various types with narrative ...
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Overview

Appropriate for middle school through highschool students, this reference comprises 13 slim, abundantly illustrated volumes, each measuring 9.25x12". About 40 entries in each volume (except the 13th, which has the index) are arranged alphabetically and range in length from a couple pages to six or seven pages; they encompass concepts, terms, people, and discipline overviews pertinent to the earth and physical sciences. The page design integrates color photos and boxed features of various types with narrative text, and each entry ends with cross-references and further reading suggestions. Each volume is separately indexed; the last contains a comprehensive index, a glossary and other supplementary material, and a subject- arranged bibliography. Annotation © 2006 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
As the title implies, this encyclopedia set covers all major earth and physical science topics. The articles are listed in alphabetical order by subject matter and are written and organized in a way that will successfully appeal to readers with or without a strong scientific background. Even students as young as third and fourth grade can extract interesting facts and information. Beautiful colorful photographs are plentiful and will tempt the reader to peruse further. This is a wonderful resource for anyone interested in the how and why of the world around us. On the first page of each entry, a short definition appears in a large, bold typeface. For example, under the "Gemstone" entry it reads, "Gemstones are materials, mostly minerals, that when polished are valued for their beauty." A light blue box labeled "Connections" lists other topics that can be cross-referenced within the encyclopedia to other areas of science. The "Gemstone" entry lists color, light, and crystals as three subjects for continued research. Entries that are longer than a page in length also have a white box labeled "Core Facts," which gives a summary of the article. The "Core Facts" section under "Gemstones" talks briefly about the definition of precious and semi-precious, how to identify a gemstone through physical properties, the fact that gemstones contain metal in their structure, and where gemstones can be are found around the world. This synopsis outlines exactly what is covered in depth within the main text of the "Gemstone" entry. Throughout the volumes there are other boxes, each color-coded and containing detailed information of further interest to the reader. Readers with a stronger scientificbackground who crave supplemental information or a more thorough exploration of the subject are given a chance to delve deeper. The pale green boxes labeled "A Closer Look" contain a particular focus on some detail of the entry. For example, on the "Aerodynamics" pages, readers can learn how helicopters fly. The pale green box in the "Groundwater" entry shows a table listing the porosity and permeability of common materials. In the tan colored boxes labeled "Discoverers," readers can find out about scientists who have made important discoveries in that particular subject. Under "Aerodynamics," a tan colored box highlights two big names in that field, Frederick Lanchester and Ludwig Prandtl, and shows how these two diversely different researchers worked independently to develop important testing and analysis of aerodynamic lift. The pale yellow boxes marked "History of Science" look at how ideas have changed over time and how that particular area of science has developed. For example, in the "Geodesy" entry, the pale yellow box is titled "Is Earth Squashed or Stretched?" and it discusses the argument between the English and the French in the 17th and 18th centuries. The English believed Isaac Newton's calculations and claimed that the earth was squashed like a ball. The French thought the astronomer Cassini was right and that the earth was stretched. To find out who was right, a team of scientists were sent to measure the earth near the North Pole and near the equator. The resulting measurements proved that Newton was right. The pinkish-gray boxes labeled "Looking into the Future" let readers peak into the future possibilities to speculate on what might develop in this branch of science. Under the subject, "Groundwater," this box opens an interesting discussion on the management of North American groundwater supplies and how farmers are trying to organize conservation of ground water. The light purple boxes marked "Science and Society" feature the application and commercial uses for a particular encyclopedia entry. For example, in the "Science and Society" box in the "Aluminum" entry, readers learn the many reasons why it makes sense to recycle the earth's nonrenewable resource of aluminum. At the end of each entry, readers can find a list of cross references, as well as current books, magazine articles, and web sites on the featured subject. The last volume in this set contains a thorough index, the periodic table, geologic timescale, tables of conversions and useful physical constants, lists of Nobel Prize winners, a glossary, and a section containing further reading and research. 2005, Marshall Cavendish, $459.95. Ages 12 up.
—Sally J. K. Davies
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780761475873
  • Publisher: Cavendish, Marshall Corporation
  • Publication date: 9/1/2005
  • Edition number: 2

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