Wexler challenges children to look with different eyes at objects they see daily. Common things when viewed in part, in close up, in cross section, or in silhouette become true mysteries. Pattern recognition provides the clues to this captivating thinking book. Set up a Discovery Center in your classroom with a microscope for examining other "everyday mysteries" (e.g., fabrics, classroom objects, etc.) using magnification to reveal underlying patterns. This will motivate students to think differently and solve problems collaboratively as they gain experience using a microscope to stump their classmates with mystery patterns.
Everyday Mysteries is an aesthetically pleasing, brain teasing collection of close-ups of common things by master photographer Jerome Wexler. His shots of sections, cross-sections, surfaces, silhouettes, and edges of ordinary objects are artfully composed and distinctively set against a black background. Bet you can't identify his unfamiliar perspectives of the familiar at first glance-or second!
K-Gr 4-An intriguing collection of photographs: closeups, silhouettes, and cross-sectional shots of everyday household items. Although this sort of ``guessing'' book is nothing new, this one is very well done. Wexler arranges the images by type, so readers know if they are looking at an edge of an object, or its surface, or if what is pictured is a small part of a larger whole. The mystery objects are shown at the end of each section. The full-color photographs are clear, sharp, and attractive. A page of text introduces and explains the idea and the rest is left up to the pictures to show. A good addition to the puzzle-book collection, and one that could be used with a wide age range.-JoAnn Rees, Sunnyvale Public Library, CA
A popular feature in children's magazines is a page with several small, extremely close-up photographs of familiar objects. In this handsome book, Wexler takes the "What is it?" game to a higher level of sophistication by offering large, striking photos with black backgrounds. Each chapter poses a new visual challenge: part of the whole (the center of a playing card or the teeth of a zipper, for example), surface (cantaloupe, strawberry), cross section (stack of notebook paper, kiwi), silhouette (floppy disk, chocolate kiss), and edge (quarter, potato chip). Well designed, the book may inspire children to think about "everyday mysteries," as Wexler notes in his introduction, and it will certainly encourage them to foll"ow his final advice: "Have fun!"