SUPERBRAIN by Toronto Public Library

SUPERBRAIN

The Insider's Guide to Getting Smart
Age Range: 10 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

From the librarian-authors of The Research Virtuoso (2012), a guide for younger would-be “super-learners” to gathering and evaluating information.

It’s a patchwork mess from start to finish. Using an ill-chosen metaphor, the authors urge readers to “bust down the walls of learning—KAPOW!” by recognizing their “learning styles,” preparing an agenda, and getting in the right frame of mind. Interspersed with an irrelevant test for leadership style and equally arbitrary shoutouts to such achievers as Alexander Fleming and youth advocate Malala Yousafzai, they go on to offer vague advice about evaluating the reliability of online claims (simplistically equating “point of view” with “bias”), present a quick outline of the Dewey Decimal System, and promote “information literacy” with cursory quizzes and bullet points on subjects like plagiarism and responsible use of social media. Libraries, characterized as a “safe and free resource,” get occasional mention—as places to find “events” or “cool items” to borrow. Whamond adds cartoon images of costumed young superstudents zooming around with books or tackling Ignorance and other villains. There is no index or age-appropriate resource list.

Intended as a pathway to lifelong learning, this is more like a winding, muddy dead end. (appendix, glossary, source list) (Nonfiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-55451-735-0
Page count: 72pp
Publisher: Annick Press
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15th, 2015




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