The Book Reviews – Website

January 28, 2008

Shaky Ground – Earthquakes

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Shaky Ground – Earthquakes

Author: Mary Colson

Page Length: 48

Reading Level: 5th

Genre: Non-fiction


REVIEW & AREAS FOR TEACHING: Turbulent Planet Shaky Ground: Earthquakes is another in a line of disaster books authored by Mary Colson. What immediately catches the reader’s attention are the shocking and mesmerizing photos throughout the book. Section titles, vocabulary definitions along the bottom of the page, fact boxes, diagrams, and maps are excellent teaching and learning tools available on almost every page. This book is packed with information on everything from famous earthquakes, historical perspectives , the science of why and how earthquakes occur,  the steps rescuers take, and the probability of future earthquakes as well as a look at contributing factors.  This book is a fascinating, engaging, page turning read!


Teachers would find this a great book for going over just about any concept including: context clues, main idea, supporting details, causes and effects, part to whole relationships, sequencing, classifying, and much more. Having no experience with earthquakes personally, what I found most fascinating was the incredible photos and the real life accounts. On page 24, Stephani describes her experience stating, “I was fast asleep in bed. Suddenly, my whole body went flying upward. As I landed, heavy things fell on top of me. I thought I was being attacked. Everything was smashing up and down all over the room. I felt total fear.”


Students are taught the six steps to survival, necessary items for a typical earthquake survival pack, and the necessity for preparation and preparedness. The text even details how Japan practices annually by instituting a country wide drill to practice evacuation procedures in the event of an earthquake or a volcanic eruption. A captivating picture of Japanese students wearing protective hats really drives the point home. The text concludes with a list of other sources, valuable search tips and keywords, and an organization contact list.


RELATED WEBSITES:  (quiz and java enabled rotating globe),1082,0_583_,00.html


REVIEWED BY: Dayna Taylor



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