Junior Geography: New Orleans and Rapa Nui

below-sea-lvlIt just so happens that today I have two interesting and unusual  Junior geography books to share with you.  Built Below Sea Level: New Orleans by Laura Layton Strom is  a slim junior non-fiction book,   part of the Shockwave Social Studies series from Scholastic,  provides a brief lesson about New Orleans, subsidence and hurricanes.     The book is very well-designed and beautifully laid out.   It begins with a handful of “High-Powered Words”  (bayou, Cajun, gumbo, levee, Mardi Gras and sea level)  each of which is briefly and clearly defined.   The book covers some of the city’s historical highlights,  discusses what happened when the storm surge from Katrina caused the levees to fail and ends with a kind of “Pro and Con”   (kind of a grade school version of the old Point/Counterpoint” segments on 60 Minutes).   While I mostly liked the book I was a bit disappointed by the “con” argument which suggested it would be safer to move the city to higher ground.  (Look at  a map.   It’s NOT possible.) This one is mildly Recommended to anyone who wants to begin teaching their young grade schoolers about this fascinating and beguiling city.   Buy now $4.95

easter-islandEaster  Island is certainly another fascinating and beguiling locale.   One of my hoped-for,   once-in-a-lifetime trips that I’ll probably never get around to taking  involves travelling to Chile,  Easter Island, Tahiti, New Zealand, Tonga and Hawaiimy own personal  “best-of-the-Pacific” route.    And Micahel Capek’s Easter Island: Unearthing Ancient Worlds provides a somewhat more detailed and advanced history of this, the remotest inhabited land on our planet.      This book would be ideal for slightly older grade schoolers (grades 4–6 or so) who are interested in learning about exotic and far away places.  For that audience,  Easter Island: Unearthing Ancient Worlds is Highly Recommended.   Buy now $29.75

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