Reviewed by Jacqueline Pfeiffer
3rd Grade Teacher
What are galaxies? How many are there? How are they formed? How far away are they from Earth? What is a light year and how far away is one light year? These and many other questions are answered in this book, one of six in the Explore Outer Space series. Each volume attempts to explain tough topics in astronomy that baffle teachers all the time, such as solar and lunar eclipses, galaxies, nebulae, quasars, asteroids and the asteroid belt, and supernovas.
Young, would–be astronomers need a good science background to understand these topics. With great pictures, photographs, and illustrations, these books fill in that background and explain those tough topics to children (and also help teachers understand those topics). Each book has an interest level appropriate to grades 3 through 6, with a reading level at grades 2–3. Many of the vocabulary words, which are defined in the glossary in the back of the book, would be challenging to most students unless they had a great interest in the topic. The webpage provided was not activated at the time of this review.
Interspersed on every other page are sidebars featuring a “That’s Out of This World” fact. For example, galaxies often collide, including our own Milky Way galaxy. The Andromeda Galaxy is on a collision course with our galaxy at a speed of 310,000 miles per hour. It is possible in dark places to see up to 2,000 stars without a telescope. It takes between 225 and 250 million years for our solar system to make one orbit of our galaxy. The Earth’s address is “Earth, The Solar System, The Milky Way, The Universe.”
This is a great book for space enthusiasts and the photos would draw even reluctant readers in to read the book. I highly recommend the series.
Review posted on 1/4/2013