Themes of science have been cleverly linked to art projects in the "Arty Facts" series. Various earthly functions, from volcanoes to gemstones, form the foundation for a variety of craft projects. Study time zones and make a sun and moon disk, or learn about fossils and make some out of clay. Stalactites and stalagmites are found in caves and look like giant icicles. Most metals we use are alloys, metals mixed together such as steel. Learn many more facts, about such earth features as icebergs, terracotta, types of rocks, and fumaroles. Excellent photographs accompany each topic and project. Simple step-by-step directions are given along with a list of materials needed for each artwork. Some activities are two-dimensional, such as masks and marbleized paper or constructions such as a jeweled pot or strongbox. Younger children may need some supervision, but Cooper' book would be an ideal source for cross-curricular studies. An index, glossary, and materials guide are included. Children should enjoy learning with this book, through many clever hands-on activities. 2002, Crabtree Publishing,
Laura Hummel <%ISBN%>0778711390
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-Two unsuccessful attempts to pair art activities with specific branches of science. Planet Earth contains information and crafts related to geology, volcanoes, precious metals, fossil fuels, etc. Plants focuses on leaves, bark, spores, etc. In both books, the basic activities are geared toward a preschool to very young elementary audience, and would require ample supervision. The continuing theme of the majority of the projects seems to be on cutting out various materials, pasting them to another material, cutting them out again, and mounting them to poster board. In most cases, several steps could be removed to make the project less time-consuming. Most of the crafts only vaguely relate to the accompanying text, and a few don't seem to be associated with it at all. The texts themselves, aimed at an older audience than the activities, leave out key aspects of the sciences they discuss. For instance, Planet Earth explains that the movement of Earth's plates at their juncture results in earthquakes, but the author never introduces the terms plate tectonics or fault lines. Adults would be better off developing their own curricula-related projects using general children's craft books.-Heather E. Miller, Homewood Public Library, AL Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.