Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Book Review: Almanac 2021

I'm having such a junk week and it's only Wednesday. I basically just want to crawl into bed and stay there. That's a totally adult thing to do, right? 

Almanac 2021 - National Geographic

The essential annual for the 21st century, this high-energy almanac is packed with facts, photos, infographics, time lines, and maps--the perfect stocking stuffer and book to browse all year long. A guide to the world like no other, this vivid and comprehensive book offers the best of National Geographic and more: science, nature, history, world cultures, geography, and the environment, illustrated with amazing photography, fascinating infographics, and maps created by expert cartographers. Highlights this year include the James Webb telescope, launching in 2021; a brand-new wildflower guide; a guided tour of the moons of our solar system; a beautiful infographic on jellyfish; and a feature on lithium, central to the work of recent Nobel prize-winning chemistry. Divided into lively chapters including Exploration & Adventure, Life on Earth, and The Science of Us, this year's almanac features top photos from National Geographic's celebrated Instagram account and geniuses past and present including Jane Goodall, Amelia Earhart, and acclaimed conservationist Kris Tompkins, dedicated to preserving much of Patagonia. With new discoveries on every page, this cutting-edge book--called a "category buster" by Booklist--brings you, as Publishers Weekly puts it, "all the things that National Geographic does best." 
I am a SUCKER for a National Geographic book or documentary, but almanacs? GIVE IT TO ME. Admittedly, this edition feels a little heavy because of the topics mentioned, but maybe that's what we need to initiate change. Climate change, coronavirus, and the future of the planet are kind of bleak, not going to lie. If you are looking for science, this is your jam. 

One of my favorite sections is the one on Reading the Clouds (page 100) because I like storms and how storms form and happen, but I also really like clouds. I've seen some strange clouds before, and I've seen some really scary clouds, so this has been interesting to try to match what I see in the sky. Also, on page 160 there is a section about wildflowers, and if you've followed me on Instagram you'll know I've taken up gardening since quarantine and I'm trying to keep them alive but also plant weird things not everyone has. I have two on the list, not including dandelion because who doesn't have that?! I also love the information about Monarch butterfly migration! My kids and I are VERY into butterflies and we have planted milkweed for next year, we nurture tons of little caterpillars into butterflies, but my kids and I totally enjoyed reading about this. (Also, we drove on the section of Hwy 35 that butterflies fly over and saw SO MANY on our way to Missouri in 2019!)

Also, shout out to NatGeo for including information about religious holidays! My children are going to be learning about each of those as we go through them. Interestingly, did you know there are only 12 days of celebrated holidays for Christianity, but Hinduism has 39 days per year? Also, it seems fitting with the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg that I really enjoyed the Woman Sufferage section. 

Overall I loved this. The best part of Almanac 2021 is that you can page through this at your leisure. You likely aren't going to sit down and read this start to finish, but you can kill some time and learn something while you're waiting for dinner to cook (or be delivered). If you need something extra, and not on the computer, for your homeschool/virtual journey, this would be AMAZING. It covers social studies, science, math, and even some English. We are already using it for discussions and learning so much. 

A huge thank you to TLC Book Tours to National Geographic for having me on this tour! I highly recommend this, but also anything National Geographic gives us, because you will learn so much. (Also the photography is always stunning so even if you aren't going to read words, the photos will get you.)
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1 comment:

Why Girls Are Weird said...

You're making me want to pick one of these up.