Written and Illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault
While you might not have heard of the NATO Phonetic alphabet or the International Radiotelephony Spelling Alphabet you have probably heard someone use it. The military members use it, as do emergency workers, airline pilots and sometimes even confused sales people on the other end of the phone.
C stands for Charlie and Z is Zulu. But it isn’t that easy to figure out in this book. On each left side page grade three readers will find one word with the first letter a different color than the rest of the word. The different colored letters help keep the alphabet in order and offer clues to the reader.
Some of the clues will still leave readers without much help due to their age. However, this does provide an introduction to a code used by emergency responders to clarify communication over radios and walkie-talkies of the past.
Librarians and teachers will want to use this book to fill a niche left open in the past. Normally, this alphabet is taught on a need to know basis for adults. But it is good for students to become familiar with something they will hear from time to time.
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- Title: Alpha
- Author/Illustrator: Isabelle Arsenault
- Publisher: Candlewick Press, 2015
- Reviewer: Elizabeth Swartz
- Format: Hardcover, 64 pages
- ISBN: 978-0-7636-7852-4
- Genre: Non-Fiction
- Grade level: 3 Up
- Extras: The author’s note at the end of the book explains this emergency code.
Written by Jon Scieszka
Illustrated by Brian Biggs
The third book in the Frank Einstein series is just as silly and just as wonderful as the first two. The names alone make the book worth reading, but the great illustrations also add to the mood. Lots of robots with interesting parts and diagrams of human body systems.
Frank Einstein, kid-genius, is flanked by robots Klink and Klank as he invents a machine to boost brain power for pitcher Janegoodall and the rest of the team, including Watson. Meanwhile, T. Edison and Mr. Chimp hatch an evil plot to foil them
Of course, the science should be taken with a grain of salt and used only as a jumping off place. The science of the plot sort of falls apart with the mind control aspect. And there are a few minor errors in the real science. (The muscles are biceps and triceps. These are singular words.) Kids may be inspired to work with the real science, though. The extras at the end add to the fun. Fourth graders, particularly, will strengthen their literacy skills with this hilarious gem.
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- Title: Frank Einstein and the Brain Turbo
- Author: Jon Scieszka
- Illustrator: Brian Biggs
- Published: Amulet Books/Abrams, August 2015
- Reviewer: Sue Poduska
- Format: Hardcover, 192 pages
- Grade Level: 3 to 7
- Genre: Fiction, Science
- ISBN: 978-1-4197-1643-0
- Extras: Frank Einstein’s Human-Body Notes, Pitching with Janegoodall, Watson’s Inventor’s Corner, Bob and Mary Einstein’s Travelallovertheplace.com Travel Hot Spot, Klank’s Turing Test (jokes), Mr. Chimp’s Word Search, Mr. Chimp’s Alphabet (American Sign Language)