In the past 3 years, I've shared many math books with my children. We've found magic in 48 of these books. I've learned much from these amazing authors and illustrators and watching my children interact with their books. In addition to writing this blog, I've been writing picture book manuscripts and dreaming of publishing magical math books of my own. And in this post, I share my writing for the first time on this blog.
The Original Area Mazes: 100 Addictive Puzzles to Solve with Simple Math―and Clever Logic! features area mazes puzzles created by Ryoichi Murakami and Japanese puzzle master Naoki Inaba. These puzzles have a sudoko puzzle feel. However, in addition to using logical thinking, the solver of Area Maze puzzles uses two mathematical ideas over and over. The first idea is the area of a rectangle is length times width. The second idea involves the relationship between factors and multiples (although it's not necessary to use this mathematical language in order to solve of course).
Alznauer's reverence for Ramanujan and his mathematics shines through in this lyrical picture book biography. The author artfully weaves rich mathematical questions into her story of Ramanujan, a boy with a curiosity and passion for numbers that glows from deep within. Miyares brings the magic with his dreamy, lush, layered watercolor illustrations.
Tired of counting the days you've been in stuck at home during this global pandemic? Try counting some goats with your...ahem... kids. Didn't crack a smile at that last pun? Here's a counting book that is actually funny. Book Published in 2010 by Beach Lane Books, Let's Count Goats was written by author and educator Mem... Continue Reading →
Counting is a fascinating process to watch unfold. Picture books are a great way to share counting with a child. In the sharing process, the reader/co-reader (whether teacher or parent) is able to observe and reflect on how and whether a child participates in counting. We've already posted quite a few counting books on this... Continue Reading →
It's been 2 1/2 years of searching book lists and library bookshelves for magical books to share with you on our blog. Here is our entire list. Any of them would make great gifts for the holidays, but below is a subset to make shopping a bit easier. Age ranges are not set in stone of course.
A few days after the event, Siena and I sat down to read Counting on Katherine for the first time together. Toward the beginning of the book, Siena turned to me and said, "That’s impossible. No one can know that much math. It’s a book."
She flipped back to the two pages shown below.Surprised I replied, "Yes. It is a book. But she's a real person. It's a true story about her life." The look of surprise and wonder on Siena's face was magical.
Written by Helaine Becker and illustrated by Tiemdow Phumiruk Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Saved Apollo 13 tells the story of Katherine Johnson, the mathematical genius who made sure that Apollo 13 returned home safely. Counting on Katherine was published in Henry Holt and Co. in 2019 and is recommended for children in kindergarten through 4th.
Written and illustrated by Tim Hopgood Walter's Wonderful Web is a story about a spider trying to build a perfect web to withstand the wind. Walter forms webs containing sets of similar shapes inside each other. Hopgoods lyrical lines pair perfectly with his adorable images of Walter and his web-making struggles.
In Anno's Magic Seeds, the main character Jack receives a gift of two magic seeds from a wizard. He is instructed to eat one of the seeds (which will sustain him for an entire year) and plant the second seed. Jack's magic seed keeps growing and growing and growing. His magical crops grow quickly, first by ones, then by twos and faster and faster. "Though the story can be followed without any math skills beyond simple addition and subtraction, sharp witted-young readers will delight in the increasingly tricky arithmetic puzzles woven into text and illustrations."