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How things work

boothroyd_how do hang gliders workBoothroyd, Jennifer How Do Hang Gliders Work?
Gr. K–3     32 pp.     Lerner

Boothroyd, Jennifer How Do Helicopters Work?
Gr. K–3     32 pp.     Lerner

Boothroyd, Jennifer How Do Parachutes Work?
Gr. K–3     32 pp.      Lerner

Silverman, Buffy How Do Hot Air Balloons Work?
Gr. K–3     32 pp.      Lerner

Silverman, Buffy How Do Jets Work?
Gr. K–3     32 pp.     Lerner

Silverman, Buffy How Do Space Vehicles Work?
Gr. K–3     32 pp.     Lerner

Lightning Bolt Books: How Flight Works series. Each of these books takes a cursory look at a particular mode of transportation/flight. The somewhat choppy but easy-to-read texts are supported by engaging full- and half-page photographs in an accessible design. Briefly discussing the science and function of each highlighted aircraft, these books do an adequate job of introducing complex subjects to young readers. Reading list, websites. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Sports—Hang gliding; Vehicles—Helicopters; Sports—Parachuting; Vehicles—Hot air balloons; Vehicles—Airplanes; Space—Space vehicles

enz_amazing story of cell phone technologyEnz, Tammy The Amazing Story of Cell Phone Technology: Max Axiom STEM Adventures
Gr. 4–6     32 pp.     Capstone

Graphic Library: STEM Adventures series. Illustrated by Pop Art Properties. In a (contrived) story with a dynamic graphic-novel format, superhero scientist Max Axiom presents a simplified description of the science and technology behind cell phones and other radio devices, including the insides of a phone, the sending and receiving of radio waves, and the cellular grid system that transmits signals. Additional facts are included at book’s end. Reading list. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Cartoons and comics; Graphic novels; Communication; Telephones

hammelef_building an airplaneHammelef, Danielle S. Building an Airplane
Gr. 4–6     32 pp.     Capstone

Omoth, Tyler Building a Motorcycle
Gr. 4–6      32 pp.     Capstone

Blazers: See How It’s Made series. These books succinctly chronicle the step-by-step processes involved in the production of an airplane and a motorcycle. Although the two machines are diverse in size and purpose, each manufacturing process involves initial planning, designing, and computer testing before assembly line production begins. Machine enthusiasts will appreciate the technical-detail-rich photographs and interesting facts boxes accompanying the readable texts. Reading list. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Manufacturing; Vehicles—Airplanes; Vehicles—Motorcycles

macaulay_tolietMacaulay, David Toilet: How It Works
Gr. K–3    32 pp.     Square Fish/David Macaulay Studio

With Sheila Keenan. My Readers series. In this beginning reader/nonfiction chapter book, clear descriptions, diagrams, and cross sections outline step by step how waste is produced by the body, disposed of through a toilet, sent to either a septic tank or sewer system, and purified. Macaulay’s humor is evident as he reminds readers that the language of science can be both precise and lively. Reading list, websites. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Hygiene

oxlade_heatingOxlade, Chris Heating
Gr. K–3     24 pp.     Heinemann

Oxlade, Chris Water
Gr. K–3      24 pp.    Heinemann

How Does My Home Work? series. These simple texts look at how resources are brought into our homes. Each double-page spread opens with a question (“Where Do We Get Water?”); two stock photos and a few easy-to-read sentences provide brief answers. The books touch (superficially) on overuse and conservation. An activity encourages readers to be more aware of their consumption. Reading list, website. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Dwellings; Water; Environment—Conservation—Natural resources

From the November 2014 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book.

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