Reviewed by Jacqueline Pfeiffer
3rd Grade Teacher
What is a supernova? How is it formed? What effect does it have on our Soar System? What is a neutron star? 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, a neutron star is so dense that on Earth, a piece the size of a sugar cube would weigh as much as Mount Everest. A teaspoon of material from a white dwarf star would weigh up to 100 tons. The nebulae in which stars form are often called star nurseries. Cassiopeia A, a vast cloud of matter left over from a supernova that occurred 340 years ago, is still moving away from the explosion at 31 million miles per hour.
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