Friday, January 10, 2014

Book Review: Tools and Treasures of Ancient Egypt

This book is part of the What Can We Learn from Early Civilizations? series. The book has four different sections each highlighting a different aspect of Egyptian history. In the first chapter, The Ancient Egyptians, children learn about the Nile River as well as the surrounding desert. They also get to see a carving of Hapi, the god of the Nile. Chapters two and three cover the class system as well as the culture of the early Egyptians. The last chapter discusses how the Egyptian civilization came to an end.

Tools and Treasures of Ancient Egypt is packed with photographs of Egyptian art, monuments and the landscape of Egypt. Each picture is accompanied with a caption that either gives more information on the photo or asks a question for kids to think about. There is not a large amount of text on each page so a younger audience won't struggle to pay attention. At the end there is a list of recommended books on Egypt.

The photographs in this book are amazing. After reading it I went back and looked through all of them again. My daughter did a history unit on Egypt a few months ago and we read quite a few books on the topic. So I was pleasantly surprised that this book contained information that we had not come across yet. For example, I had no idea that Hieroglyphics were not the only form of writing in Egypt. There was apparently a simpler version that was used by merchants and upper class citizens. I was also surprised when I read that the Greeks ruled Egypt as Pharaohs. I knew that Alexander the Great had conquered Egypt, but I didn't know the Greeks had mostly left the culture intact instead of replacing it.

While this book would work well in elementary school classrooms, I think it would be just as useful to have at home. The pictures alone kept me going back through the book and I imagine a lot of children would enjoy being able look through them a second or third time. I know my daughter will sometimes take out a book like this and use it as inspiration for her art work.

Though this book is relatively short, 40 or so pages long, it is filled with great information. I definitely wish we would have had this a few months ago for Sky's history class.

I got to read a digital copy of this book through NetGalley and Lerner Publishing in exchange for an honest review.

To view this book on Amazon go to
Tools and Treasures of Ancient Egypt (Searchlight Books - What Can We Learn from Early Civilizations?)

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