Whole Wide World
Series of 15 titles
How old is the Colosseum in Rome? How long is the Great Wall of China? Readers will find these answers and more as they learn about the location, history, architecture, and special uses of some of the world’s most iconic landmarks in Whole Wide World. Real-life photographs take readers on a trip, while an At a Glance feature provides a map and quick facts on each landmark. Each title includes a table of contents, infographic, glossary, index, compelling What Do You Think? sidebars to encourage deeper inquiry, and reading tips for teachers and parents.
|Grade 2 - Grade 5
|History, Social Studies
|Number of Pages
|7.5 x 9
|Guided Reading Level
|Glossary of key words, Informative sidebars, and Teaching guides
Booklist Review of Whole Wide World
These new books in the Whole Wide World series present exciting destinations around the world to young readers. Each book focuses on one large, famous structure, describing its parts, its construction, and what visitors can see there today.
Angkor Wat explains how the world’s "largest religious structure” was modeled on Mount Meru from Hindu mythology. Chichén Itzá tells how the Maya and Toltec peoples used some of the complex’s buildings, from temple to observatory to gov ernment office. Easter Island details how the hundreds of famous moai statues were carved in a quarry, then finished after they were removed. Leaning Tower of Pisa describes the land features that caused the bell tower to lean—and the many attempts to stabilize it over time.
The books are designed for classroom as well as personal use. Though short, they carefully include standard nonfiction elements as well as occasional trivia and critical thinking questions, diagrams, a final map and set of fast facts, and a note to parents and teachers.
Pronunciations are the one missing touch; these would help to guide readers through the names of the sites and their elements in local languages. Well-chosen stock photos show different aspects of each structure, emphasizing its monumental size and other impressive characteristics. Would-be world travelers will likely be inspired to add these destinations to their lists.
SLJ Review of Whole Wide World
This series continues to balance information with an eye-catching format, highlighting landmarks around the world. There are about three chapters that are six pages long and contain full-page pictures that accompany short paragraphs throughout. The beginning of each title starts with before, during, and after questions for teachers and caregivers to engage readers.
The series takes a look at the history of each location, such as the hundreds of stone statues on Easter Island which “…were made more than 500 years ago” (Easter Island). Vocabulary words are in bold, photos are labeled, and infographics, like diagrams and sidebar facts, make the text easy to understand.
Still, some full-page pictures are cut in half by an unnecessary color block that has a small paragraph, but this allows the information to be broken up into pieces. The end of each series includes quick facts and tools, a glossary, index, and how to learn more.
VERDICT: An accessible introduction about historical landmarks for elementary readers.
SLJ Review of Whole Wide World
This series remains well organized and colorful as it highlights landmarks around the world. Each has about three chapters of six pages long with full-page pictures that accompany short paragraphs throughout. The beginning of each title includes before, during, and after reading questions for caregivers and educators to ask children.
Labeled pictures, bold vocabulary words, diagrams, and sidebar facts make the new information engaging. Although some of the full-page pictures are cut in half by a color block that has a small paragraph, this helps each title remain accessible. The series takes a look at the history of each landmark and how we interact with the historical places today. The books end with quick facts and tools, a glossary, index, and how to learn more.
VERDICT: Accessible introductory landmark information for elementary school readers.