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Ye Olde Weird but True: 300 Outrageous Facts…
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Ye Olde Weird but True: 300 Outrageous Facts from History

by Cheryl Harness

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To say my son loves these books would be a serious understatement. He owns every book in the series, has the newest ones yet to be published on pre-order and literally devours each new book within days of receiving it. "Ye Old Weird, but True" was a great addition to the series. It arrived in the mail after school and during dinner my nine-year-old son was already astonishing my husband and me with little known historical facts. I've copied below my review of early books in the series, as it applies to this most recent addition, as well.

Think your child can't read? Give him this book and you just might be pleasantly surprised!

My son loves these books. We started reading National Geographic Kids books when he was about six (he's nine now) and I can honestly say that these books have been instrumental in teaching him to read. His favorites are those from the "Weird, But True" series. We own the first five books in the series and have the ones not yet published on pre-order.

One weekend last spring, our son actually read one entire 300 pg. book from this series to my husband and I over the course of two days - 50 pg.s three times a day until he'd finished. I mention this because last year my son was sent to a reading specialist because his teacher was concerned that he was reading below his age-level. Although I was happy for him to receive the extra attention from the specialist, I always doubted that he had any real problems reading because he read the Nat'l Geo books to us constantly. Thankfully, I was right. He no longer sees the reading specialist, reads above his grade-level, and even reads out-loud to his classmates at lunchtime.

Why is this so important? Because kids are often labeled as poor readers when it's not that they can't read, but rather that they simply aren't interested in what they are being given to read. My teen-age step-daughter grew up thinking that she was a poor reader, too. That all changed when I gave her the Twilight Series. She read the last book, "Breaking Dawn," (756 pages) in less than 48 hours!

There are several elements that make the Nat'l Geo Weird, But True series so appealing, particularly to elementary aged boys. The layouts are very simple, not cluttered. Each fact is only one or two sentences long. The font is much larger than what you would find in a typical chapter book designed for this age group. And the visual images are excellent - exciting, funny, interesting - they immediately draw the reader in, curious to find out more.

As a parent, teacher, library volunteer, and chairperson of my son's Scholastic Book Fairs, all of the books in this series are ones that I have and will continue to recommend for lower elementary-aged children! ( )
  Yogamom67 | Oct 14, 2013 |
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Packed with 300 wacky facts for history lovers.

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