Oceans
by Johnna Rizzo

Price at time of review: $14.95
64 pp.
National Geographic Society
Washington, DC
2010
ISBN: 9781426306860


Grade Level: 3-5

Reviewed by Juliana Texley
NSTA Web Field Editor


This large-format book features National Geographic's trademark photography. Although its text is too advanced for most elementary readers, the pictures will entice them to stretch their skills. That makes this book appropriate for a classroom center or library.

It's hard to escape the impression that the designers went for "gusto" over science. Calling animal behaviors "whacky" and filling pages with lists of "biggest," "longest," and "coolest" provides memorable factoids but doesn't stretch understanding. White text over variegated backgrounds and the minimal glossary don't help devoted readers. The diagram on "layers of life" is interesting, but out of proportion.

Although the book lacks much opportunity for inquiry and emphasizes facts over connections, it will be an attraction in a center or near a marine aquarium in a classroom. The interest that the photos will undoubtably engender may make students dive into the internet for more information.


Review posted on 3/5/2011


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