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Maths: A Book You Can Count On Paperback – Illustrated, 19 Jul 2010
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An exciting new title for younger readers from Basher, who gave us a cool new spin on science
About the Author
Artist and designer Simon Basher has fun playing in the world of contemporary character design. Inspired by a love of simple line work and a rich colour palette, his characters fill the gap between edgy Manga and the cuteness of Hello Kitty!
Top Customer Reviews
It covers a range of mathematical topics: starting with the basics, such as numbers and units what they actually mean; covering sums, multiplication and x values; then onto shapes and solids, including pi and finally covering the meaning and use of data, such as graphs and charts.
A very useful reference then, I can see my children using this often, as it covers these concepts in a fun, easy-to-understand way and features some characters to help this along, together with some historical facts and figures. Highly recommended!
The text is on the left hand side and there is a bright colourful drawing on the right hand side. The drawings are simple and greatly help to illustrate the concept being discussed on the opposing page. The text is very well written in a punchy style that reads more like 9 years+ comic fiction rather than a maths textbook, but it still manages to get across to a child a good, basic understanding of concepts that many adults don't understand, or if they do understand, would be very hard pressed to explain so succintly.
Each mathematical concept is introduced as a "first person character" that the reader can visualise. So you'll get something like "I'm Pi and I'm so amazing and wonderful... etc". At first this might seem a little patronising or condescending, or trying too hard to appeal to kids, but ultimately this approach did actually work with my 9 year old son, so the proof, as they say, was in the pudding. My son has enjoyed reading this book, and it has opened his eyes to a whole range of mathematical ideas, and has put into clearer focus other things that he learned at school.
However, I have to be strict with this book and mark it down to 4 stars because the book lacks the depth of examples that we all know are necessary to ingrain maths concepts into a human brain.Read more ›
From the back cover:
'Meet Zero, a bubbly chap who will dissolve you to nothing; all-action Units, who just love to measure; greedy-guts Multiply, a big guy who hoards numbers together; and mysterious Pi, who goes on and on and on......to Infinity!
Multiply your number know-how with Basher's unique one-stop guide to the building blocks of mathematics. Packed with top tips and memorable characters, this is an essential book for every budding mathematician.'
Measuring in at c 17.5 cm square, this is the same size as the recently published Punctuation - The Write Stuff.
Maths - A book you can count on! has a colourful paperback cover which opens to 64 numbered, shiny pages, split into 4 pastel themed chapters:
* Chapter 1 - Number Bunch (pg 4-15) (Peach-coloured)
Zero, Infinity, Minus Numbers, Fraction, Decimal Fractions & Units
* Chapter 2 - Special Sum-Things (pg 16-27) (Aqua-coloured)
Add, Subtract, Multiply, Divide, X(Special Sum-Things)
* Chapter 3 - Shape-Shifters (pg 28-49) (Lilac-coloured)
Line, Angle, Circle, Pi, Triangle, Quadrilaterals, Polygon, 3D Shapes, Area, Volume
* Chapter 4 - Data Gang (pg 50-59) (Pale Pink-coloured)
Average, Ratio, Per Cent, Bar Chart, Pie Chart, Line Graph
plus a 2-page index & a useful 3-page glossary......completed with a fold-away MATHS poster, attached to the back inner cover.Read more ›
For example, there's a reference to the Pythagoras 'sons of the squaw on the hippopotamus' joke. The joke is completely inappropriate to this age range and it can only serve to confuse when presented in this context. What was wrong with breaking Pythagoras down into the 3:4:5 squared representation that usually serves as an introduction?
However, there is some good teaching in there - volume is introduced as an extension of the concept of area in a practical way that children can relate to.
I'm not sure about the full page drawings of characters such as Volume, the rock chick. Personalising the ideas in this way doesn't simplify anything, but only introduces irrelevance.
Parents may find themselves taking a sneak peek at the Glossary to clarify their own understanding and this is probably the most useful part of the book.
Any book that engages children with mathematics is worthwhile and this is worth trying for that alone, in that it is visually appealing, but use with caution and check your own understanding. You may find yourself having to offer additional explanations to children and wishing you hadn't started ....
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Arrived quickly, good condition, great price. I was pleased to see that the poster that comes with the Basher books was still in it - now on my son's wall. Read morePublished on 11 Jun. 2014 by N.Umemoto
I picked this book thinking my daughter (10 when I got the book, now 11) would love it. Unfortunately she's failed to be grabbed at all - the Maths concepts are seem to be... Read morePublished on 20 Sept. 2012 by N. Gratton
A word of warning about these books - the style takes some getting used to. I had the Planet Earth one and hated it at first, then thought I'd give the Periodic Table one a go and... Read morePublished on 11 May 2011 by MartinRG
Got this for my kids, my little one aged 8 actually read through the book by herself cover to cover, and I'm sure the illustrations must have helped. Read morePublished on 20 April 2011 by Customer near Manchester
This book falls into the exact same trap as the puncuation volume, and presumably, all the other volumes of this series. Read morePublished on 17 Jan. 2011 by LOTHAR
I have two children presently at Key stage 3 at school and one at Key Stage 2 in fact my eldest is in her final year and studying for those all important GCSE's. Read morePublished on 8 Dec. 2010 by foxcylady
I first bought the punctuation book from this series for my younger brother. I was so impressed that ive since started purchasing all the other titles in the series to help him... Read morePublished on 7 Dec. 2010 by K. D. Squire
I got this for my 10 year old as i'd hoped that it may shed light on some of the more difficult to explain concepts of Maths. It didn't. Read morePublished on 29 Nov. 2010 by Crazy Bald Heid