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Life As We Know It

Overview

As far as we know, Earth is the only inhabited planet in the Universe. So what makes Earth such an ideal place for life to survive? And how did it all get started? Life as We Know It goes back to the beginnings of life on our planet, explaining to middle grade readers how it emerged under hostile conditions from a chemical soup as a simple self-contained unit: the cell. Key biological themes, such as how cells work, produce energy, and reproduce are explained in simple terms. This knowledge is then used to ...

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Overview

As far as we know, Earth is the only inhabited planet in the Universe. So what makes Earth such an ideal place for life to survive? And how did it all get started? Life as We Know It goes back to the beginnings of life on our planet, explaining to middle grade readers how it emerged under hostile conditions from a chemical soup as a simple self-contained unit: the cell. Key biological themes, such as how cells work, produce energy, and reproduce are explained in simple terms. This knowledge is then used to explain how more complex organisms live.

The book also looks at the wide variety of plant and animal life on Earth and how it evolved, and introduces the features and characteristics of members of the six kingdoms of life. Young readers will learn how life forms have adapted to occupy particular niches and what can happen if something upsets this balance.

Lavishly illustrated with images from DK's extensive natural history photo library, this encyclopedia is a visual feast as well as a thorough treatment of biology. Through DK's unique visual style, scientific ideas that might appear intimidating in a textbook are made lucid at a glance.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Winston has plenty to share about the diversity of life on Earth in this informative and eye-catching book, which begins with Earth’s formation billions of years ago and continues to the present day, exploring cells, the animal kingdom, ecosystems, food chains, and creatures that tolerate extreme conditions (including bacteria that thrive in volcanic pools and coffinfish that live under high pressure on the sea floor). The book’s full-color, graphically intensive design incorporates numerous photographs, sidebars, crisp digital art, and light humor, usually in the form of speech-bubble captions for the animals. Ages 7–up. (May)
Children's Literature - Carlee Hallman
From the development of cells into plants and animals and their ability to live together in difficult circumstances, we become acquainted with the possibilities of survival. DNA and cell reproduction in animals and plants and the necessities for life are illustrated and described. Life forms are classified. Evolution of life is shown with a time line. Habitats with their biodiversity, ecosystems, and life zones are pictured and defined. Relationships between some organisms, food chains, scavengers, and ecosystems shape the environment. The way plants and animals adapt to a changing environment and places called home are depicted. Human intelligence and the adaptations of other creatures to extreme circumstances may be our clues to survival. Colorful photographs and drawings on brightly colored backgrounds illustrate the text. There is a glossary and index. Organized in small bites of information, this book is a great resource for kids who want to learn about or make reports for a biology or science class. Reviewer: Carlee Hallman
School Library Journal
Gr 4–8—This visually appealing book, teeming with crisp, color images, provides readers with an introduction to the vast varieties of life on Earth and the possibilities beyond our planet. The text is arranged into five sections: "The meaning of LIFE," "The VARIETY of life," "Living TOGETHER," "Secrets of SURVIVAL," and "The OTHER SIDE of life." Some of the topics covered include basic cell structure, the six kingdoms, photosynthesis, habitats, migration, and ecosystems. Brief paragraphs of information appear across each spread on bright, eye-catching backgrounds and with a plethora of color photographs. The layout lends itself well to casual browsing, while still offering readers plenty of useful information. Children will be especially amused by the speech bubbles used throughout to lend a comical voice to key figures and an assortment of animals and plants. For example, a black widow spider warns readers: "Beware-I'm small but deadly!" The vibrant layout and accessible and engaging text are sure to attract young readers.—Maren Ostergard, King County Library System, Issaquah, WA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780756691691
  • Publisher: DK Publishing, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/16/2012
  • Pages: 96
  • Sales rank: 990,067
  • Age range: 7 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

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