The Ultimate Dino-pedia

I always, always encourage families to support their children’s reading interests, and to allow their children to have some choice in the books they read – it’s one of the simplest and most effective ways to help build and foster a life-long long of reading. It’s really quite simple, when you think about it – reading can quickly lose its shine when you’re constantly told what to read, and forced to read books that bore you to tears, or that don’t align in any way with your passions. Whether a child is obsessed with superheroes, horses, trains, or dinosaurs, that childhood enthusiasm can be harnessed and as a means of connecting with and supporting young readers. And thanks to publishers like National Geographic Kids, you can now find high-quality titles that can please both caregivers and kids.

Having been absolutely, completely and entirely obsessed with dinosaurs as a child, this magical book would have made my little heart sing:

National Geographic Kids – The Ultimate Dino-Pedia

As soon as I see that yellow border, I know I’m in for a treat – National Geographic absolutely knows its young audience, and consistently produces nonfiction titles that somehow manage to simultaneously engage, excite, entertain and educate young readers. The Ultimate Dino-Pedia is no exception – this ode to all things dinosaur is an absolute winner, both for budding palaeontologists and casual readers alike.

There are so many dinosaurs in this book! This celebration of dinosaur diversity claims to cover almost ever dinosaur currently known to science. 125 species are featured in greater detail, with Scientific Name, Discoverer, Place and Date of Discovery, Length, Habitat, Diet, Fossils, Fun Facts, and Range Map provided for each dinosaur. The images, as you would expect from National Geographic, are highly detailed and extremely engaging, and the book is divided by period into the best-known and most popular Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous eras.

Nonfiction titles like The Ultimate Dino-Pedia are a great recreational reading option that shouldn’t be overlooked. While age-appropriate and accessible, the text never talks down to children, and clearly introduces complex scientific vocabulary. Because the book is heavily illustrated, and the information is provided in bite-sized chunks, it can seem more approachable to students who might be intimidated by longer texts, or who are less interested in fictional stories, making it suitable for a wide range of readers.

AND there’s even a corresponding app! The app builds on the text with additional media, including short videos and audio presentations, which help bring over 600 dinosaurs vividly to life.

Thoroughly researched, clearly and carefully presented, and enthusiastically illustrated, The Ultimate Dino-Pedia is a fantastic nonfiction title for dinosaur enthusiasts and casual readers alike, though it would also be useful in a classroom setting as a tool for dinosaur research. Whatever the reason, this is another absolute win from National Geographic Kids – though really, at this point, I would hardly expect anything less from this stellar publisher.

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