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# DRAWING DATA WITH KIDS

### CULTIVATING DATA-LITERACY: A SCREEN-FREE JOURNEY THROUGH THE ART OF VISUALIZATION FOR KIDS

A brightly inviting and effective manual for teaching data visualization to younger readers.

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An illustrated guide to teaching visual information to children.

The key fictional conceit of Khan’s nonfiction debut is a 10-year-old girl named Pariza, whose parents are teaching the basics of data visualization to her and her younger brother “one graph at a time.” Each of the book’s chapters contains a story in which little Pariza is exposed to some new data concept or mathematical process, followed by a “time out” in which more details are provided, concluding with a “your turn to play” segment in which young readers are encouraged to try out the skills they’ve just learned. In this fictionalized setting, the author contends with a variety of simple data-representation challenges, from the basics of making a graph to ways of breaking down such statistical data as the average rainfall in each of the United States or the number of vowels and consonants in the various state names. Gradually, the subjects grow more elaborate and more complicated, always couched in the activities of Pariza’s family. In one section, Pariza and her family members keep track of each person’s score during rounds of Scrabble; Pariza then converts those scores into a graph (“she started adding dots for her score and connected them to form a line graph”). Khan’s narrative choice to render all of this as a story with identifiable characters (including resourceful Pariza, her calm, understanding parents, and her headstrong younger brother) is a wise one; the approach will allow younger readers to learn the basics of data visualization without feeling intimidated or bored. The book’s uncredited illustrations, showing not only characters and their settings but also multicolored charts and graphs, further help to demystify what might otherwise be daunting concepts. By the end of the book, Pariza is confident and ready to take on the world, and Khan’s young readers may very well feel the same way.

A brightly inviting and effective manual for teaching data visualization to younger readers.

Pub Date: June 2, 2023

ISBN: 9781087966205

Page Count: 126

Publisher: Self

Review Posted Online: Sept. 4, 2024

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# MAMA BUILT A LITTLE NEST

A good bet for the youngest bird-watchers.

Echoing the meter of “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” Ward uses catchy original rhymes to describe the variety of nests birds create.

Each sweet stanza is complemented by a factual, engaging description of the nesting habits of each bird. Some of the notes are intriguing, such as the fact that the hummingbird uses flexible spider web to construct its cup-shaped nest so the nest will stretch as the chicks grow. An especially endearing nesting behavior is that of the emperor penguin, who, with unbelievable patience, incubates the egg between his tummy and his feet for up to 60 days. The author clearly feels a mission to impart her extensive knowledge of birds and bird behavior to the very young, and she’s found an appealing and attractive way to accomplish this. The simple rhymes on the left page of each spread, written from the young bird’s perspective, will appeal to younger children, and the notes on the right-hand page of each spread provide more complex factual information that will help parents answer further questions and satisfy the curiosity of older children. Jenkins’ accomplished collage illustrations of common bird species—woodpecker, hummingbird, cowbird, emperor penguin, eagle, owl, wren—as well as exotics, such as flamingoes and hornbills, are characteristically naturalistic and accurate in detail.

A good bet for the youngest bird-watchers.   (author’s note, further resources) (Informational picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: March 18, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4424-2116-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Beach Lane/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 3, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2014

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# VOTE!

After the sorry example of the 2000 presidential election, it’s good to be reminded of the simple beauty—and hard-won right—of voting for a candidate. And Christelow goes farther in this primer on the process of electing a candidate. Simple language, gay color, and humorous subplots make for an appealing introduction to electoral politics, and she wisely complements her somewhat dry explanatory text with a typically funny word-bubble story of one woman’s mayoral campaign. Readers learn about political parties and polls, voter registration, to be wary of campaign advertising, the right to recounts, and are urged to conduct research into the candidates. There’s also a very handy timeline of voting rights that conveys the eye-opening evolution of democracy in the US. Impressively, Christelow gives to each individual vote a sense of importance—an act of participation that nestles in the heart of democracy. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 18, 2003

ISBN: 0-618-24754-8

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Clarion Books

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2003

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