Fun with Roman Numerals

Overview

An introduction to Roman numerals for the youngest readers.

Page IV. Super Bowl XLV. Built in MMVIII. Roman numerals are everywhere: on clocks, in books, and on buildings. But what do Roman numerals mean, and how do we use them? On a scale of I to X, this straightforward and appealing presention of an often confusing topic earns a XI!

Explains the Roman numeral ...

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Overview

An introduction to Roman numerals for the youngest readers.

Page IV. Super Bowl XLV. Built in MMVIII. Roman numerals are everywhere: on clocks, in books, and on buildings. But what do Roman numerals mean, and how do we use them? On a scale of I to X, this straightforward and appealing presention of an often confusing topic earns a XI!

Explains the Roman numeral system, which, though very old, is still in use today.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Michael Chabin
Roman Numerals are thought to have had their birth as scratches on tally sticks. If so, they date back to the origin of the concepts of number and counting, at least in northern Italy where they were used by the Etruscans long before Rome ruled much of anything. Old as they are, they were still evolving as recently as the time of Augustus when the symbol L was finally settled on to denote 50. In this book the meaning and method of Roman Numerals are explained in a clear and straight forward way, though the explanation could easily fit on a single page. What takes so much room are Edward Miller's sly and often funny illustrations that are vaguely reminiscent of Mitsumasa Anno (if Anno had used Adobe Illustrator instead of watercolor). There are football playing centurions and clumsy painters and more than a few chariots rolling among the aqueducts and temples—all in rollicking color. Reviewer: Michael Chabin
School Library Journal

Gr 2-5

Designed with boldly colored graphics and simple lines, this book takes a contemporary approach to an old topic. While the artwork employs icons and images from ancient Rome, the text introduces Roman numerals by citing modern examples of how they are used: to number chapters and pages in books, on watch faces, and for sports events. Taking a unique approach, Adler suggests that students use coins, each labeled with a specific Roman numeral, to better understand the symbols and how they are written and counted. Several examples are depicted and explained. For the most part, the writing is forthright and easy to understand. However, the page that describes which Roman numerals can be subtracted from which (e.g., "C can only be subtracted from D or M") is a bit confusing. The book ends with a spread of photos showing how Roman numerals are used today, and the back cover presents a helpful list of Roman numerals and their Arabic equivalents. Use this attractive title to supplement Arthur Geisert's Roman Numerals I to MM (Houghton, 1996), which covers the basics and then offers applications with illustrations of pigs.-Erlene Bishop Killeen, Stroughton Area School District, WI

Kirkus Reviews
This team once again hits a home run with their latest math title (Working with Fractions, 2007, etc.). Repetition and lots of examples are the keys Adler uses to make Roman numerals both understandable and memorable. Beginning with the seven symbols, the text introduces the concept that their values never change, unlike the Arabic system in common use. Readers then learn when and how to add and subtract to make numbers-Adler relates this to paying for something and getting change back (in fact, one activity encourages readers to use coins to practice writing Roman numerals). Building on this, readers learn how the symbols interact and about the top bar and open box that are used to make even larger numbers. Miller's Roman-themed digital illustrations add humor and interest. The final spread is a collage of photographs showing Roman numerals in real-life settings, encouraging readers to be on the lookout for more. Comprehensive, readable and understandable, with a concrete activity, this is the resource for teachers. (Informational picture book. 7-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780823422555
  • Publisher: Holiday House, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/14/2010
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,440,252
  • Age range: 7 - 10 Years
  • Lexile: 860L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 0.20 (d)

Meet the Author

David A. Adler is a former math teacher and beloved author of more than a hundred children's books, including math titles such as Fraction Fun; How Tall, How Short, How Faraway; and Shape Up!: Fun with Triangles and Other Polygons. He lives in New York State. Visit his website www.davidaadler.com.

Edward Miller III is the author, illustrator, and designer of many nonfiction books, including The Tooth Book: A Guide to Healthy Teeth and Gum and The Monster Health Book, a Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year that School Library Journal called "lively" and "visually appealing." Ed lives in New York City.

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