I decided we’re going to do some physics this month. Turns out it’s been four years since we covered that topic, so it’s about time we cycled back around. That means I need some books for the kids. Miss Adventure is easy – I’m going to start her with The Great Motion Mission by Cora Lee that I got for Mr. Curiosity the last time we did physics (follow that link for my original review).
Finding just the right book for Mr. Curiosity was trickier. I had to get some options and let him choose, and I’ll share those options with you.
First off, I grabbed Paradox: The Nine Greatest Enigmas in Physics by Jim Al-Khalili. This book presents ten chapters of physics questions that seem like they can’t be answered using scientific principles, but upon further review they can be. The book looks interesting, but perhaps a bit too dense for my 13-year old.
Next, I grabbed A Briefer History of Time by Stephen Hawking. This is a shorter, companion book to the classic A Brief History of Time. The book attempts to describe what we know about time and space, and how they are created and interact. The book has color illustrations and photos to break up the text and would have worked fine for Mr. Curiosity.
I also checked out For the Love of Physics by Walter Lewin. Lewin is a physics professor at MIT and has turned information from his classes into a highly accessible book. This is a bit closer to a textbook, in that it methodically works through physical phenomena we can see and/or touch. He’s even got a YouTube channel so you can watch his lectures, if you don’t get enough by reading his book.
Ultimately, Mr. Curiosity decided to read How to Teach Quantum Physics to Your Dog by Chad Orzel. The hook here is Orzel explains quantum physics concepts by explaining them to his dog, Emmy. The book includes multiple conversations with Emmy, who acts as the clueless reader. She just happens to enjoy chasing bunnies or squirrels and would like to apply quantum physics to catching them. She never quite gets there, but you laugh heartily at her attempts, and learn something in the process. Mr. Curiosity is finding this book so readable, he’s reading it for fun as well as for schooling.
So, if you’re interested in learning something about physics, something here should fit the bill!
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