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robotics_becker_zoobotsBecker, Helaine Zoobots: Wild Robots Inspired by Real Animals
Gr. 4–6
   32 pp.     Kids Can

Illustrated by Alex Ries. This unique book introduces a variety of robotic devices based on animals. Each device is introduced on a two-page spread set up like a video-game-character profile, touching on name, realm, team, super skill, specifications, applications, and animal inspiration. Illustrations are a clear, colorful mix of the technological and lifelike and the fantastic. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Robots; Animal behavior

robotics_clay_battling for victoryClay, Kathryn Battling for Victory: The Coolest Robot Competitions
Gr. K–3
   32 pp.     Capstone

Clay, Kathryn Robots in Risky Jobs: On the Battlefield and Beyond
Gr. K–3
   32 pp.     Capstone

Blazers: The World of Robots series. Battling introduces the Robocup soccer tournament, ArtBot-Musical competition, sumo-wrestling robots, and other robo-contests. Risky profiles robots performing rescue work, exploration, and military missions. Each book is divided into five chapters, which feature easy-to-read texts, mostly clear photos, and “Robot Fact” boxes. Though the coverage is superficial, the high-interest topic and accessible presentation will lure elementary-age readers. Reading list. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Rescue work; Robots; Armed forces; Competition

robotics_foran_roboticsForan, Racquel Robotics: From Automatons to the Roomba
Middle school, high school     112 pp.     ABDO/Essential Library

History of Science series. Foran covers the history of the scientific and engineering fields associated with robotics, including automated and remotely controlled machinery and artificial intelligence. Robots are profiled according to use in industrial, research, space, and everyday contexts. Color photographs of robots and scientists, and historical images of their precursors, round out the text. Reading list, timeline. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Robots; Engineering

robotics_furstinger_helper robotsFurstinger, Nancy Helper Robots
Gr. K–3    
32 pp.     Lerner

Furstinger, Nancy Robots in Space
Gr. K–3    
32 pp.     Lerner

Zuchora-Walske, Christine Robots at Home
Gr. K–3    
32 pp.     Lerner

Zuchora-Walske, Christine Weather Robots
Gr. K–3    
32 pp.     Lerner

Lightning Bolt Books: Robots Everywhere! series. In this high-interest series, simple text defines and then expands on each titular robot type. Though easy to understand, the prose can lack clarifying transitions (and the authors regularly use the term scientists when the more accurate word would be engineers). However, colorful photos lavishly illustrate concepts, and captions and callout labels are well placed. Reading list, websites. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Weather; Robots; Space—Space probes

robotics_stewart_robotsStewart, Melissa Robots
Gr. K–3
     48 pp.     National Geographic

National Geographic Readers series. In this leveled-reader introduction to robotics, Stewart describes the purpose and functions of many different types of mechanical robots (as well as a few famous movie characters), emphasizing the ways in which they move, the tasks that they perform, and where research may take the field in the near future. Fascinating photos and engaging text are displayed on brightly colored layouts. Glos., ind.
Subjects: Machines and Technology; Robots; Engineering

From the March 2016 issue of Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book.



  1. I’m an engineer and I just bought Zoobots for my daughter, hoping she follows in my footsteps 🙂

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