I have mentioned before that when it comes to Science we tend to spend a lot of time on Biology, it just happens to be the part of Science that both my kids find fascinating. But we decided that the next few months are going to be all about diving into Chemistry and with that in mind I knew I needed a few extra resources around the house (We are using the Activate books as our main Science resource and I do really like them but we also like having extra books that just explain the concepts slightly differently because sometimes it is just that different wording or that different picture that brings everything together.)
Without even having to search I knew that one of the books that I wanted to get for her was the Super Simple Chemistry book from DK. We already have the Super Simple Biology book and both my daughter and I love it. We have used it quite a bit as an extra reading resource so I knew the Chemistry version was going to be good.
First impressions – How do they manage to fit so much into these books without making the pages seem crowded? Honestly these books are jam packed with facts and concepts yet the pages are actually a pleasure to read because they are not crowded.
We really love the layout, it seems to invite you onto the page without being intimidating, it just works for us – a large central image which is always detailed but clear and the nice short concise paragraphs. I really think this format is a winner because it does not overwhelm the kids (or the adults trying to help them) with lots of long-winded sentences.
So a a bit about this book. It only covers Chemistry. This is not a general Science book. They have written three separate books so you get a book for Biology, a separate book for Chemistry and a separate Physics one. Also this is not a student book or work book, so please do not think school book that you can buy and use as a Science curriculum. There are no questions and answers for the kids to work through. This is a book that explains Chemistry concepts, there use brilliant visual illustrations, charts, pictures and key concise points. It is a book that kids can read through to help them understand concepts. Think extra Science book, think additional resource, think concise explanation book.
What exactly is covered? – It is a lot, they tend to be summarized onto a single page or a double page and the book is 288 pages long so really it covers a lot but here is a quick summary.
- The Scientific Method (variables. graphs, units of measurements, organizing data, conclusions)
- Basic Chemistry (atoms, elements, mixtures, compounds, solubility, filtration, simple distillation)
- Elements (periodic table, different groups)
- Structure and bonding (ions, dot and cross diagrams, bonding, molecules)
- States of Matter(solids, liquids, gases, diffusion, heating and cooling)
- Nanoscience and smart materials (properties of nanoscience, uses and risks, hydrogels)
- Quantitative Chemistry (calculations, equations, crystallization, atom economy)
- The Chemistry of acids (acids, bases. ph scale, indicators, neutralization, reactions, insoluble)
- Metals and their reactivity (reactions, equations, extracting, electrolysis)
- Energy changes (reactions, decomposition, energy transfer, cells)
- The rate and extent of chemical change (reaction rates, collusion theory, equilibrium)
- Organic Chemistry (different compounds)
- Chemical Analysis (testing for different elements and compounds)
- Chemistry of the Earth (earth’s structure, rock cycle, carbon cycle, global warming, pollution)
- Using Resources (Ceramics, composites, making polymers, sustainability, resources, water, fertilizers)
We like this book because it is just an easy to read book. They have taken concepts which can be confusing and intimidating and made them easy to digest. The whole feel and style of this just appeals to my daughter.
We recommend this book. It is an excellent resource that you can use together with your Science books to ensure the kids have a better understanding of the key chemistry facts.
You can also buy this book directly from amazon – Super Simple Chemistry: The Ultimate Bitesize Study Guide
Admin Bits – I did mention to the DK team that I wanted to use this book with my daughter and they kindly sent us a copy.
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