The Periodic Table: Elements with Style by Basher and Adrian Dingle

Probably the most fun anyone is ever going to have studying the periodic table. Basher/Dingle have created first- and third-person narration to explain each element, as well as logical groupings of elements. Basher’s illustrations (he describes himself as a “graphic surrealist”) captures the character of each element with a Pokemon/Anime aesthetic. Copper’s entry begins, “I am an age-old metal that gave birth to whole chunks of history and launched civilizations . . .” Other titles in the series – written with Dan Green – include Physics: Why Matter Matters, Biology: Life As We Know It, Rocks and Gems: A Gem of A Read, Astronomy: Out of This World, and Planet Earth: What Planet Are You On?

I love these little paperback books (although I wish they had spiral bindings on them). They make great gifts for almost any age (they’re less than $10 each) and they are perfect for stashing in the car for kids to thumb through in odd moments.

I don’t remember where I read that childrearing tip but I pass it along frequently: keep 2-3 non-fiction books and/or magazines in the backseat of your car (I use a basket stuck between the bucket seats). Even the most reluctant readers *will* pick them up to thumb through at odd moments. Rotate titles every so often to keep readers interest . . .

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