Mauna Loa is the largest volcano in the world, and it is located in Hawaii. Pictures of this natural phenomenon throughout this book give a close up look for those who may never get to visit Mauna Loa. Fast facts and a map of the location, climate, and eruption history are included. The history of Mauna Loa is explained in brief, different types of lava are defined, and the study of plate tectonics and the formation of volcanoes are mentioned. It includes descriptions of life including plants, animals, and of the people who live in and around Mauna Loa. Explorers and scientists who were important in discovering more information about the volcano are introduced. This book is a part of the "Natural Wonders" series and each book includes what you need to know if you visit this natural wonder, and pros and cons of an important issue relating to the natural wonder. This book points out the arguments for and against relocating people away from the volcano. The back of the book also gives a timeline, a short quiz to review the book, a list for further reading, websites, and a glossary. Highly recommended for libraries and classrooms. 2004, Weigl Publishers, Ages 8 to 12.
Marcie Flinchum Atkins
Gr 3-6-These books shout "curriculum tie-in." Each volume provides information about regional plants and animals and the Native people of the area. A one-page biography of a significant explorer or naturalist, a pro and con look at a relevant "key issue," and a time line are included. Of course there is some variation in the discussion of the physical environment in question. A small map helps readers locate the natural wonder in its state or region; a larger map shows the bigger picture. For example, Mauna Loa includes a "Ring of Fire" map that identifies the locations of active volcanoes around the Pacific plate. Each page includes a full-color photo, diagram, or illustration and from two to four paragraphs of text. The pedagogical aim of the books is clear in the true-false, short-answer, and multiple-choice quizzes at the end. A skills page documents the learning objectives accomplished, although it seems unlikely that most children will care about the answers to questions such as "What facts did I learn from this book?" One amusing note: the same illustration is used to demonstrate what the well-prepared hiker should wear in both The Grand Canyon and The Everglades. Only the labels are changed to point out different features of his attire. These titles are serviceable additions to collections of report materials, but they are unlikely to pique interest on their own.-Kathy Piehl, Minnesota State University, Mankato Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.