Mazeways: A to Z by Roxie Munro. Sterling (August 2007); ISBN 9781402737749; 48 pages
(Book Source: Copy from local library)
Munroe's mazes for each letter of the alphabet are highly detailed and visually interesting. Each maze takes the reader to a different location -- from an Airport or Garden to a Ranch or Waterfalls. The author provides directions on how to navigate through each letter maze. My daughter used her finger to follow the paths and enjoyed completing the tasks described. For instance, the letter L maze directions reads: "Enter through the LIBRARY door. Find the red Italian language book hidden on a shelf. Look up flights to Rome on the computer..." Several objects are also hidden in the pictures for children to find. The end pages give the correct solutions. This book would be perfect to use in conjunction with teaching the letters of the alphabet and older kids will enjoy trying to complete the maze puzzles on their own. Besides navigating the mazes, it's also fun to trace the large maze letters with your finger and use it like a tracer page for writing practice.
EcoMazes: 12 Earth Adventures by Roxie Munro. Sterling (April 2010); ISBN 9781402763939; 40 pages
(Book Source: Review copy from publisher)
What's it like where you live? In EcoMazes kids can explore many different places on the earth by following the nature mazes and learn about the different types of creatures and plants living there. The book features twelve ecosystem maze puzzles: Tropical Rainforest, Desert, Coral Reef, Alpine High Mountain, Arctic Polar, Wetlands, Tundra, Grasslands, Antarctic Polar, Savanna, Conifer Forest and Temperate Forest. The mazes vary in difficulty and younger kids will probably need a little help in solving puzzles. (We hit a rock trying to hike through the Alpine High Mountain and had to refer to the solution at the end of the book.) Along the way, kids can spot several animals native to each different environment -- Munro included over 350 different species. My daughter's favorite, the coral reef, shows divers swimming and trying to find their way back to the beach through clear blue water filled with seahorses, stingrays and other marine life. The detail in this book is incredible! I wonder how long it takes to illustrate just one of the mazes? The content provides a wonderful springboard for learning more about ecosystems and the animals that live there. Perfect choice for Earth Day and would work well as an entertaining supplement to environmental/ecological lessons and studies.
This week we tackled our biggest stART (story+art) project ever! After some research, we learned that our area is a mixture of Midwest oak savanna and tallgrass prairie. We decided to learn more about the ecosystem we live in by making our own large scale maze outdoors. We choose to create our own Midwest Oak Savanna maze. First, we laid out a small scale maze on a piece of paper. Guided by the sketch, I used sidewalk chalk to draw out the entire maze on our driveway. The kids helped fill in the maze by drawing grass, coloring in the water and by helping draw some of the animals.
Our ecosystem includes oak trees, tall grass, rocks, a stream, white-tailed deer, rabbits, snakes, turkeys, and a Red-headed woodpecker. We also choose to include a campground to illustrate how the animals and people live together in the same environment. The kids loved learning about the animals that live in our region and liked exploring the people-sized maze. They even decided to try navigating the maze by bike and push car!
Sterling Children's Books has graciously offered to giveaway a copy of EcoMazes:12 Earth Adventures to a Brimful Curiosities reader.
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