Light is all around us

Wendy Pfeffer, 1929-

Book - 2014

An introduction to light and how it helps us to see profiles different kinds of light, including sunlight, firelight and electric light, and provides interactive experiments readers can perform at school or at home.

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Location Call Number   Status
Children's Room j535/Pfeffer Checked In
New York, NY : Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers 2014.
Main Author
Wendy Pfeffer, 1929- (-)
Other Authors
Paul Meisel (illustrator)
First edition
Physical Description
37 pages : color illustrations ; 21 x 26 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

A companion book to Pfeffer's Sounds All Around (1999), this simply written volume introduces the properties of light, particularly sunlight. Meisel's amiable ink drawings, brightened with colorful washes, help make the concepts accessible to a young audience. Topics range from the simple, such as examples of bioluminescence, to the complex, like how light waves bouncing off objects are perceived by the eye and the brain as vision (a process introduced here but not fully explained). After discussing the sun's light as waves of electromagnetic radiation, a kind of energy that travels through space, the text compares the speed of light to that of cars, planes, and sound waves, while a double-page illustration makes the comparisons more real. An appended hands-on section presents two simple science experiments and an activity related to shadows. An attractive addition to the dependable Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science series.--Phelan, Carolyn Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

This addition to the Let's-Read-And-Find-Out Science series explores light-what it is, how it moves, how humans measure it, and how it allows us to see. In plainspoken prose, Pfeffer breaks down complex ideas to make them readily comprehensible ("You see a cat because light waves reflect off the cat to your eyes"), while introducing terms like electromagnetic radiation, lumens, and octillion-as in the 35 octillion lumens the sun puts out. Meisel's active cartoon scenes contribute to the book's accessibility and pull in some surprising parallels (a giant glowing octopus appears beside trick-or-treaters carrying glow sticks, both examples of artificial light). It's a smart introduction to the topic, and a handful of concluding experiments encourage further investigation. Ages 4-8. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 2-Light is not an easy concept to convey on a beginning-to-read level, but Pfeffer does a credible job of incorporating just the right amount of detail for these readers. She relates the science concepts she's introducing to scenarios that are in the everyday experience of young children; for example, when explaining lumens, or the units used to quantify brightness, she first discusses how temperature and length are measured. Readers will also enjoy the two easy experiments appended at the end. The colorful illustrations, created with pen and ink, watercolor, liquid acrylic, pencils, and pastels and which include children of diverse races, extend the text well and are marked by several appealing details, such as costumed children carrying glow sticks at Halloween and a glowing octopus. Another book in this series, Franklyn M. Branley's Day Light, Night Light: Where Light Comes From (HarperCollins, 1998), presents the concept of reflective light even more clearly than this title, but Pfeffer's text is shorter and features much more white space on each page, making it especially attractive for beginning readers.-Maralita L. Freeny, District of Columbia Public Library (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Horn Book Review

This strong entry in the Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science series introduces youngsters to light: where it comes from, how fast it travels, and how it enables us to see. There's a liveliness in the general descriptions ("Windows glow. Car lights shine. Signs flash on and off. Bridge lights sparkle. Sometimes, jagged bolts of lightning fill the sky and brightly colored fireworks explode on the Fourth of July"), but Pfeffer is all business when it comes to scientific explanations: "Light travels to Earth in waves of electromagnetic radiation, a kind of energy that travels through space. These waves travel so fast, we can't even see them move." Scientific terms (such as electromagnetic radiation) carry with them enough context for youngsters unfamiliar with the vocabulary to get a general idea of the meaning and continue reading. Meisel's lighthearted paintings, outlined in pen and ink, add humor but never distract from the text. Three simple experiments -- two that show the relation of light to plant life and one about how to find and make shadows -- are appended. betty carter (c) Copyright 2014. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

Inquiring minds in primary grades can gain understanding about a seemingly ever-present subject in this title about light in the Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science series. Pfeffer begins her straightforward text by discussing sources of light from the sun and stars, as well as those powered by electricity. Soon readers are discovering how light travels to Earth from the sun 93 million miles away. The challenging concept of how fast light travels is made clear by Meisel's appealing spreads comparing the speeds of various vehicles (car, plane, etc.) to light. The notion of measuring a particular light's brightness in lumens unfolds alongside a series of spot illustrations showing how length, time, temperature and weight are measured. Bioluminescent creatures, such as common fireflies and the more exotic glowing octopus, get a quick mention before an accessible and informative explanation of how the eye works is impressively executed by both author and illustrator. Simple experiments proving how necessary light is to living things and suggested activities about shadows are provided at the title's conclusion. A note states that this book "meets the Common Core State Standards for Science and Technical Subjects." Newly independent readers will appreciate how closely the pictures reflect and extend the text, while younger students will gain much from listening to the book read aloud and poring over the details on each page. An illuminating choice for the science shelf. (notes on experiments) (Informational picture book. 5-8)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.