The Wondrous Workings of Planet Earth: Understanding Our World And Its Ecosystem

I lucked out and stumbled across this book while planning our second-semester concentration on Earth Science. I have Oak Meadow Science 7 in the wings along with several dozen books on a TBR list, but what I hoped for was to find a spine. Ta-da! I have a backbone book, and fiction, now I need to write out some lesson plans. Nonhomeschooly (auto correct does not like my made up word) folks may be wondering what I mean by spine? A spine merely is a book that contains all the subject matter that you wish to cover in a course. Since I am concentrating on outlining, narration and an essay or two this semester in LA, making the writing part come from our Science class is both double dipping and smart use of time. IMO and that of many other homeschoolers. In other words, I can assign a two-page spread to be summarized or outlined a few times a week, Combine that with some videos, hands-on stuff, and we’ve got ourselves a science class.

When I go off on a tangent about how I’ll use a book in our homeschool, I feel a connection to those recipe bloggers that tell you their life story before the ingredients of the recipe. #sorrynotsorry

Back to this gorgeous book. Don’t let the illustrations fool you- the science within it is firmly Junior High. Why can’t big kids have cool art in their books? Maybe if this sells well, it’ll be a trend. I think that a good illustrator can make understanding any subject more accessible to students. The narrative within is dense and even as a read aloud I think under 5th graders may not be captivated. It is listed under both YA nonfiction and MG nonfiction so I think even the publisher is on the fence about what age group this fits best. From the publishers website:

This book explains how our planet works, from its diverse ecosystems and their inhabitants, to the levels of ecology, the importance of biodiversity, the carbon cycle, weather cycles, and more. 

After reading this you will have no illusions about whether human activity affects our planet. I think junior high kids will see it as a call to action.

The Wondrous Workings of Planet Earth: Understanding Our World And Its Ecosystems by

Rachel Ignotofsky

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