Friday, January 26, 2018

Review: What Are Rocks Made Of? by Ellen Lawrence

Rock-ology, The Hard Fact About Rocks
by Ellen Lawrence
Bearport Publishing
24 pages
ages 4 to 8

A chunk of granite rock may look gray and boring, but take a closer look under a microscope and its possible to see that the rock is made from billions of tiny colorful grains. Each microscopic grain is a substance called a mineral, and its minerals that are the ingredients that make up all the rocks on Earth. In this book, readers will learn how different combinations of minerals create different types of rocks. Theyll discover that metals, such as gold, are actually minerals that can be found in rocks. And theyll learn that some minerals grow as beautiful shapes called crystals that can be made into precious gemstones such as rubies and sapphires. Filled with information perfectly suited to the abilities and interests of an early elementary audience, this colorful, fact-filled volume gives readers a chance not only to learn, but also to develop their powers of observation and critical thinking. From stunning photographs to high-interest facts, this book makes exploring the topic of rocks and minerals a lively, engaging experience.


Bringing rocks down to a microscopic view, this book shows what rocks are composed of and how they fit our world.

There are thousands of different types of rocks, but they have more in common than one might think. After a table of contents, the first pages dive into a basic look at rocks and what happens when they are taken under a microscope. From various mineral compositions to crystals and gems, the basics of rocks and their variety is introduced in a way young readers will understand. Each page spread, or chapter, has a main theme, which is then explained in a few short sentences. Small pictures with extra tidbits and explanations are added here and there, adding more interesting pieces of information curious readers are sure to enjoy. Each spread also includes a large, real-life picture which shows the mineral, crystal or rock in an actual setting.

After the reader learns what rocks are composed of and the difference between rocks and crystals, there are several more pages at the end, which help deepen this knowledge. A mineral chart gives a quick view at very common minerals; a science lab hints at a way readers can build their own types of rocks; a  glossary not only defines several more difficult terms but also has a quick picture for each one; and the address to a website, where readers can discover more about rocks, is given.

This book presents the world of rocks in an easy to understand manner, while keeping the topic from growing too dry. The bits of added information give it a little more charm, and the pictures ensure that the knowledge can be tied into everyday life. Young readers will see rocks in a different light after reading this book, and are sure to investigate stones on their own.

Eight books in the series.

From tall mountains and deep canyons to tiny pebbles on a beach, our Earth is a very rocky place. How do rocks form, though? What are rocks made of? How do people use rocks? And where in the world can we see Earth's most amazing rocks? This new Science Slam series takes a fresh look at rocks, giving children the chance to learn about igneous rocks, sedimentary rocks, metamorphic rocks, the rock cycle, weathering and erosion, minerals and crystals, everyday uses for rocks, and famous rocks. Every book in the series is expertly crafted to meet early elementary and science curriculum standards. Innovative, grade-appropriate activities and experiments, critical-thinking questions, and fascinating fact boxes will keep the pages turning and the pace lively and interactive.

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