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scrounge: /skrounj/ informal verb: to actively seek [books] from any available source

This afternoon my five-year-old son asked what I was doing on the computer. I explained that I often write up book reviews to put on this blog. Then he asked if he could write one, so I told him to go find the book he most wanted to write about. 

I'm not surprised that he picked The Usborne Big Book of Stars and Planets, because it's one of his favorites. For kids who are interested in outer space, this book contains a great deal of information (don't be fooled by the "16 pages" -- several of them fold out to twice their length). It also contains many lovely and realistic illustrations.

He dictated his review to me, with a little prompting in the beginning to try to get him to focus on what he likes best about the book. By the end he was just going through it and talking about what struck his fancy. I didn't write down every word, but I got the gist of what he was saying.

Me: Why do you like this book?

T: Well, it's about planets and I like planets.

Me: What did you learn about planets?

T: Well, I learned that a long time ago, when two things crashed together, they made something new, a very very long time ago. Before my parents were even born. [referring to the Cartwheel Galaxy]

Me: What else?

T: There were robots that drive on Mars. And I like what they do. They're cool machines.

Me: Do you remember the names of any of them?

T: Constrosity? [Curiosity]

Me: What else did you learn from the book that you thought was interesting?

T: Meteors are little tiny space rocks that burn up in the earth's atmosphere. I like that we have an atmosphere on the earth so we can breathe. 

Jupiter is big. And there's a belt with asteroids called the asteroid belt, and it goes around the sun. And they shouldn't get too close to the sun because the sun is HOT HOT HOT. So don't ever go into space just to touch the sun. I wouldn't want to touch Venus either. 

There are super giant stars that are even bigger than the sun. And they run out of life. And when they die, they blast into a big explosion, just like a volcano has an explosion. And the stars come from the nebulas. And probably there wouldn't be stars if there wasn't nebulas. And probably I wouldn't like space if there wasn't stars and nebulas. Stars make the page best, so it's good for looking at. 

Giant galaxies are in the book too. 

So, there was a thing that maybe even went out of our solar system. [Voyager 1] But, it took a few pictures, but there's still another thing that takes pictures, it's the space telescope -- it takes pictures and sends them back to earth with the antenna. I'm not sure how it does that, but somehow it does that. 

And parachutes carry astronauts back to earth. 

The robots are on Mars. They pick up rocks and discover them to see if they were ever covered with water or ice on Mars. And when you're looking at the sky you can see all kinds of shapes. And you can see the dog star. And at last, the lion, the big dipper, and a lot of other things. You'll find this book pretty interesting if you look at it ever in your life. 

Scrounged From: Usborne

Format: Hardcover
Author: Emily Bone
Illustrator: Fabiano Fiorin
Pages: 16
Content Advisory: None

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