Children's Literature - Meredith KigerOne of five in "The World Today" series, this edition attempts to inform middle school readers about the financial world and the current "credit crunch" in particular. An eye-catching layout including short paragraphs, color and period photos, comments from consumers and experts, and "thought boxes" that ask provoking questions combine to interest young readers. The seventeen short chapters include an overview of the financial world, reckless lending, government rescue plans, cutting interest and taxes, from Wall Street to Main Street and so on. In the book's attempt to be brief, covering material that could take several college courses to understand, it falls short in providing necessary information. For instance, subprime lending is discussed without ever explaining the prime rate. In discussing the effects of lending in Detroit, the book states that 80% of all people who live in Michigan are African American when it should have said 80% of the city of Detroit is African American. A big difference! Many sweeping statements are made throughout the book with no sources listed for any of the information. It will take a knowledgeable teacher to guide students through these complex issues with materials from other resources as well. A glossary, an index, and web links are included. Reviewer: Meredith Kiger, Ph.D.
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