If you want to study the earth and stars with your little ones (1st-3rd grade), a good book to start with is Earth and Space, part of the Usborne Starting Point Science series. Written by Susan Mayes and Sophy Tahta, each page of this book contains a limited amount of text and brightly colored illustrations, making it a fun book to read together while sitting on the sofa.
The book is divided into six sections with 24 pages each. By covering four pages a week, you could use this book as your main science text for the year. The first part of the book is entitled “What’s the Earth Made Of?” Each page or two covers a different topic, such as earthquakes, volcanoes, types of rock, minerals, and caves. The second part, “What’s Under the Ground?”, includes information about what you would find under the street, under your home, and in the soil.
In the next two sections, the authors discuss water with “What’s Under the Sea?” and “What Makes it Rain?” Subjects covered include fish, whales, divers, underwater machines, and drilling for oil, as well as water in the air, different types of weather, and what happens if there’s too much rain.
The last two sections of the book, “Why is the Night Dark?” and “What’s Out in Space?”, cover topics about the seasons, the moon, the sun, the stars, the solar system, and space exploration. Scattered throughout the book are simple activities and experiments to try using items commonly found around the house.
Because this book gives an overview of earth science and astronomy, it provides a good starting point for further study. For example, if your child enjoys the lesson about caves, you can help him research what animals live there. If he likes learning about stars, you might find a book with constellations and see if you can identify them together.
However you use it, you’ll find that Earth and Space is a great addition to any learning library!
Guest Blogger: Samantha Bell
Photo from Amazon.com