Pros: Offers plenty of tools and tips just for kids about eco-issues
Cons: Too many in-book links
The New 50 Simple Things Kids Can Do to Save the Earth by EarthWorks Group’s John Javna (plus some kids) published by Andrews McMeel Publishing is the newest version of the classic 50 Simple Things Kids Can Do to Save the Earth and it's sure to inspire a whole new generation of green.
There are some pretty nice eco-perks of this book:
- Printed on recycled paper with soy ink!
- Kids helped write this book which is really cool. The forward letter in the book is by 15 year old Sophie Javna (John’s daughter). She and other green youth worked as co-authors on this book which gives the book an actual kid flavor to it.
- This edition of the book offers suggestions and tips that meet current needs, updated statistics, and newer trends than the older edition.
- The tone of the book is very respectful of green youth it speaks to them not down to them.
The book is set up with 50 tips and each has a “did you know” area with facts about the eco-topic at hand. That section is followed with a “what you can do” section, followed by a “see for yourself” or learn more section. It's the same throughout the entire book which is nice because older kids can quickly find what they need and younger kids know what to expect.
Beyond the 50 basic tips the back of the book offers fun eco-experiments like how to make paper and a visual smog damage experiment. Also included are some nice quizzes that test your kid's knowledge about green topics.
The website for this book is amazing. Your kids will love it - there are activities, expanded tips, experiments, links to more info and so much more. It's one of the most comprehensive green kid websites around.
My son LOVED this book. The first night we got it he stayed up until 1am asking me to read tip after tip. He likes eco-issues anyhow, but I was surprised he liked them in book form so much. The next day at school he walked in and gave little eco-lectures to all the other kids and staff. I think any child would like this book and gain valuable eco-tips.
Way too many web shenanigans - I like that websites and web resources were included,but I think in this case there were just too many. Plus the book doesn't make it simple, the urls are hyper long, which confused my son. He's eight and an older kid might have an easier time though. Example; instead of saying, “Visit Powerhousekids.com” they write urls like this, “Find air leaks! Some pointers: powerhousekids.com/stellent2/groups/public/documents/pub/phtv_se_we_gs_000529.hcsp”
Instead of all the links a decent link resource list at the back of the book would have been less distracting.
No end-of-book index - There's a front of book number by number list of topics; i.e. tip 1, “Recycle Glass page 22″ But because many topics are obscure like, “It’s the Law page 87″ (which really might mean anything) it would be nice to have an end index.
Overall though, my son loved it, I found it useful, and almost any kid will gain some new knowledge from this book. I'd highly recommend it for families looking to keep it green.