Saturday, October 3, 2015

Kid Konnection: Welcome to Mars

Every Saturday, I host a feature called Kid Konnection -- a regular weekend feature about anything related to children's books. This week I'm going to share with you an interesting book about a timely topic -- the planet Mars!

Summary: Space is still the final frontier and Mars continues to make news and attract generations of young people. In this fascinating book, hero-astronaut Buzz Aldrin challenges curious kids to think about Mars as not just a faraway red planet but as a possible future home for Earthlings!

What will your new home be like? How will you get there? What will you eat for breakfast? Find out what life might be like far, far from Earth as you navigate your way through this fun and fascinating book. What kid wouldn't want to blast off with him on this (literary) journey! -- National Geographic Kids

I couldn't help but check out WELCOME TO MARS: MAKING A HOME ON THE RED PLANET by Buzz Aldrin with physicist and NASA flight engineer Marianne J. Dyson. Living on the planet Mars is an interesting idea, and WELCOME TO MARS explores this idea. It's a fascinating book, full of information, that is written by none other than Buzz Aldrin, one of the first people to walk on the moon and a huge proponent of humans settling on Mars.

The book published by National Geographic Kids is a fantastic resource for those kids (and adults) who are interested in Mars. The story is told in a fun way to keep children's interest and the photographs are out of this world -- I couldn't resist the pun! The book begins when Mr. Aldrin congratulates the reader on becoming a Martian pioneer. The specifics about Mars and what is necessary for people to eventually live there is told in second person, as if the individual reader is actually preparing for a future on Mars. I love the creative way that the information is shared!

WELCOME TO MARS is geared to 8 - 12 year olds, but I do think it will be most appreciated by kids who have an interest in science and space. I won't claim to love all things space, but I did enjoy the book. I actually was very impressed with just how much information was included. The book does cover a lot of ground and it's well written for the audience. I appreciated that it didn't dummy down the information even though it was for kids.

The book shows the reader exactly what they will find upon their arrival on Mars, but first he or she is shown how they will get to Mars on the Aldrin Cycler Spacecraft. In addition, the reader will take a tour of the Spaceport, find ways to entertain themselves on the red planet, learn about the role of greenhouses for food, and more.

This book really is about all things Mars! Buzz Aldrin is passionate about the red planet and he obviously wants to share his excitement with today's youth. Mr. Aldrin is a great proponent for a Mars settlement. He developed the orbital rendezvous technique critical to America's moon landings and the Aldrin Mars Cycler, a futuristic space transportation system to reach Mars. He also chairs his own educational organization, ShareSpace Foundation.

National Geographic publications are known for their photographs and WELCOME TO MARS is no exception. I was blown away by the gorgeous pictures in this book. In addition to the amazing color photographs, the book also includes charts, graphs, experiments, and activities. I probably don't even need to tell you how perfect this book is for the classroom. I was thrilled to find an educator's guide with class activities (by grade) and ties to standards.

WELCOME TO MARS is an incredibly interesting book about a potential settlement on Mars. Highly recommended to kids and parents alike with an interest in science and space!

Thanks to Media Masters Publicity for providing a review copy of this book.

If you'd like to participate in Kid Konnection and share a post about anything related to children's books (picture, middle grade, or young adult) from the past week, please leave a comment as well as a link below with your name/blog name and the title of the book! Feel free to grab the little button too!


bermudaonion said...

Vance would have loved this book!!

Stacie said...

I just finished reading THE MARTIAN and have been talking to the kids about it. Talking about the possibilities of living on Mars and how long it takes to get there and such. This sounds like a great book and I bet I would learn from it as well!