How-the-world-works kind of book for a 5-year-old?
September 25, 2014 4:20 AM   Subscribe

I am looking for a good, simple, kindergarten-level science/general knowledge/encyclopedia for my 5-year-old son.

He's in his "why" phase about how the world works: the body, basic physics, astronomy, weather, how things are made...everything, basically. There's no shortage of elementary school books of this nature--especially kid's encyclopedias, but the ones I've seen are are higher level than he'd like.

His reading level is very basic--he knows his alphabet and can make it through low level books, but he's intimidated by too much writing. I know it should be somewhat challenging, and he can always come back to it when he's ready. But for now simple is good.
posted by zardoz to Education (3 answers total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Did You Know, put out by the Smithsonian, is ticking all those boxes for my first grader.

There is typically not more than one paragraph on any part of a topic, nice photos and graphics, and a range of topics like the ones you mention and then some.
posted by rabidsegue at 5:36 AM on September 25, 2014

The Way Things Work by Neil Ardley might be good. Although aimed at ages 9 and up, it's got great illustrations by David Macaulay your five year old might enjoy.
posted by Rob Rockets at 5:48 AM on September 25, 2014

When I was a little kid, I inherited this amazing book from the early 70s called What Makes it Go? What Makes it Work? What Makes it Fly? What Makes it Float? I was fascinated for hours by this book. Each page shows the cross section of things like a cruise ship, a telphone, an airplane, a washing machine, etc. I recently bought it off ebay for my friend's three year old and I hope he loves it too!

Disclaimer - it was written 40 years ago so a lot of it is completely, absolutely obsolete. But it's still cool. The text is probably too advanced at the moment but the pictures are the real treasure. I can still picture the cruise ship page perfectly. All the little rooms!
posted by silverstatue at 8:19 AM on September 25, 2014 [1 favorite]

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