Sunday, September 7, 2014

DK Back to School Boutique

September has arrived and with it many kids going back to school.   DK Canada has a special Back to School Boutique and offers 30% off for a limited time.  


We have received some of their titles from the Back to School Boutique to present you.


9781465419569HHelp Your Kids with Computer Coding

About the Book

Take your kids from browsing to building the web with the latest in DK's award-winning Help Your Kids series: Help Your Kids With Computer Coding. Computer programming is one of the fastest-growing industries and highest paid college degrees, and learning to code promotes a way of thinking helpful for every budding brain. Yet 9 out of 10 schools don't even offer computer science classes to students, according to Help correct this disparity by introducing your kids to the world of computer programming early, with a fun and approachable method. This book begins by introducing the essential concepts of programming with simple instructions, and without specialized computer lingo. Fun projects throughout let kids start putting their computer skills into practice and build their own code using Scratch programming and Python, the two most popular languages. Also included are profiles on coding stars and insights in technology such as the Raspberry Pi mini computer. In typical DK fashion, colorful graphics and step-by-step instructions assist readers in starting to think like their computers.

My Thoughts

Not everyone is married to a programmer or is fluent in programming languages.  So what do you do when you are a parent with kids who need to do homework in programming.  Well, you get the tools to help you in order for you to be able to help your child in return.   DK Canada has a unique step-by-step visual guide that will help you provide support to your child whether it is for binary code or building games.   Help Your Kids with Computer Coding has been developed in order to make the art of coding a bit clearer and enjoyable for parents.

From coding basics to fun projects, this guide will inspire children and parents alike to use their imaginations and problem-solving skills to build games and animations using two different programming languages – Scratch and Python. 

I think this book could be a great way to spend time with your child – both learning something new – and having fun together.


Computer Coding Made Easy9781553632542H

About the Book

The perfect guide for kids interested in computer programming and how computers work, Computer Coding Made Easy uses illustrated explanations that make the complex art of computer programming clear for kids. Starting with simple explanations of programming basics, this playful, hands-on book progresses to more advanced projects where children can build their own games. This programming book ideal for kids looking to take their first steps into programming.

  • Features over 100 illustrations
  • Teaches the basics of code using Python

My Thoughts

Coding.   Something I always dreaded when I was studying in IT.   Yeah I know I am bizarre.   I was better at analyzing and identifying the problems.    But I want my kids to be able to do better than me.   After all, I never know what work they might do in the future.   So here’s a small workbook that will introduce them to a beginner level of coding.   It introduces the basics of working with code using Python.    The book provides a step-by-step guidance to build key skills and includes solutions and a glossary of terms.  

Beware however, that this book contains only 40 pages.   There is an introduction about the language used in the book as well as instructions on how to install it in order for your kids to use the book.    Then the book provides plenty of exercises for your kids and/or yourself to code and learn at the same time.

This small workbook is definitively perfect for beginner coders and will introduce your kids to the world of programming.


9781553632443HFrench Made Easy

About the Book

Packed with interactive exercises and engaging activities, the latest addition to the bestselling Made Easy series guides children through French words, grammar and pronunciation. Perfect for any child who enjoys French or needs some extra support in class or to prepare for French immersion, French Made Easy strengthens learning and understanding in areas such as how to spell, perfect pronunciation and grammar rules to make it easier to master the language.

  • Contains a progress chart and fantastic reward stickers to encourage children
  • Supports French language curriculum taught in Canadian schools

My Thoughts

This specific workbook is geared for kids in grades 4 and 5 (ages 8-10).    It is a small workbook that has for mission to reinforce the knowledge and understanding of the French language.   It provides practice in the gender of nouns, plural and negative forms, and simple verb conjugations among other things.    This workbook will also encourage the building up of the French vocabulary through language use in every day situation.  

The topics covered in this workbook are: introduction, asking how it is going, numbers from 1-20, asking how old a person is, adjectives, months of the year, time, colors, human body, family, animals, numbers from 20-60, weather, days of the week, where do you live, verbs that finish with er, house, clothes, numbers 70-100, food, and more.   A certificate is also available at the end of the book as well as golden stars to encourage the child as they complete a section. 

I am a bit disappointed with the size of the book as it contains only 31 pages and the lack of color through the book.   But essentially, it can be a great way to review the French at the beginning of a new year for your child to revise the previous year notions.  

The book includes the parent’s notes and answers.


DK First French Picture Dictionary9781553631088H

About the Book

Learning French is as easy as A,B,C with this new paperback edition of this appealing colour dictionary. With over 2000 words and phrases and hundreds of eye-catching full-colour photographs of familiar themes and objects, this is an easy and fun way for elementary school Canaidan children to get started with French.

  • Over 200 photographs
  • Includes useful phrases and pronunciation guides

My Thoughts

This book is an ideal introduction to vocabulary with more than 2000 words and phrases.   It includes an easy-to-follow pronunciation guide as well as numerous pictures to enhance the learning experience.    Essentially, it is a visual dictionary which will guide your child in learning the French name of things.

The table of contents covers:  All about me, Clothes, Kitchen, Bathroom, My bedroom, Garden, City Life, In the park, Hobbies, Food, Shopping, At the party, Free time, Transport, Jungle animals, World animals, On the farm, Ocean, Nature, At the beach, School, Sports, Pets, Colours and shapes, Opposites, Weather, English to French A-Z, French to English A-Z, Speaking French, Verbs, Usual phrases, Numbers.  

Using the book is quite easy too.   For the topic pages, you will get the French word in bold and then the French pronunciation below it.  You will also get the English translation.    Extra words are also included in the page as well as a question for language practice and simple sentences based on the topic.   In the dictionary part of the book, you will get the words in the first language and then in the second language as well as the pronunciation in French.  ii

The photos are stunning on each pages from in this resource.   The book can be use on a theme you cover with your child or on a daily lesson of French with him/her.


9781465420381H1000 Inventions and Discoveries

About the Book

From making fire to building the gadgets of the 21st century, uncover the stories behind the remarkable ideas and devices that have shaped our world in 1,000 Inventions and Discoveries.

This revised and updated edition brings this comprehensive review of humanity's greatest ideas up to date. Innovations in science, space, technology, transportation, medicine, mathematics, and language are covered, along with a timeline of history highlighting all inventions and discoveries from the airbag to DNA, lie detectors to hormones, and money to the signs of the zodiac. Feature boxes delve into the details of the lives of Isaac Newton, Marie Curie, Albert Einstein and more, while amazing images and archive materials bring their achievements to life.

Covering over 3 million years of ideas, 1,000 Inventions and Discoveries will amaze and inspire a love of history in kids.

My Thoughts

“To invent, you need a good imagination and a pile of junk.” Thomas Edison

This fascinating book will allow the reader to go through the years and view all the achievements made through time in the order of their discovery.  Through all the pages of this book, you will also get a timeline which highlights the historic events that happened.   Over 1000 inventions and discoveries that have shaped the world as we know it today as covered in this book.

The book is divided into ages

  • Learning the basics C 3,000,000 BC – 500 BC
  • The age of authority C4999 BC – 1400
  • New worlds, new ideas 1401-1750
  • Revolutionary changes 1751-1850
  • Science takes control 1851-1900
  • Inventions for everyone 1901-1950
  • Information & uncertainty 1951-2014

The book is packed with facts, images, drawings and illustrations to explain all the discoveries and inventions made since the beginning of the world.   Each discovery or invention has a small paragraph explaining how it was created/discovered.  For example, pineapples were discovered in the 1500s.  Europeans began to transport the fruit and grown the plants themselves.  By 1502, Portuguese explorers had found pineapples in the West Indies.      I’m sure glad that pineapple was discovered because it is one of the most delicious fruits I enjoy eating!

Every now and then, you will get a more detailed presentation on a specific invention.   This is presented on two pages and concentrate on a specific theme.  For example, you will find one on Isaac Newton and how he discovered gravity.  

This book has been made in collaboration with the Smithsonian.   The Smithsonian is a fabulous place to visit if you ever go in Washington, DC.   We were blessed to be able to visit the Smithsonian numerous times this summer when we were in Washington, DC.  We saw a notebook from Thomas Edison as well as the plane of the Wright brothers.


This book is definitively a great reference to have in your personal library for learning more about inventions and discoveries made through the ages.


Super Human Encyclopedia9781465424457H

About the Book

Children are astounded at the human body and are eager to learn about the processes that are going on inside them. Super Human Encyclopedia offers a new perspective on the human body for kids by highlighting the truly extraordinary processes behind the body's everyday functions.

Packed with interesting facts, from how we keep cool and how memories are made to how we fight infections and how many muscles we use to smile, Super Human Encyclopedia reveals the extraordinary facts about the human body from the strength and flexibility of the human skeleton to the incredible way the brain works. Featuring real "superhumans", including memory champions, contortionists and free divers, the book features the characteristics that take them to human extremes and showcases their remarkable records of speed, power, acceleration, heart rate and a host of other fascinating facts.

With artwork and text appropriate for children 10 and older, Super Human Encyclopedia showcases from head to toe how extraordinary the human body is.

My Thoughts

This year as part of our homeschool coop, we will study the human body.    So imagine my delight when I say this book available in the Back to School Boutique.   This Super Human Encyclopedia will help the kids to better visualize the inner workings of the body.    They will discover how eyes are able to see millions of colors, find out how many bacteria live in the intestines and what they are doing there, meet the people who can jump the farthest, learn how the brain memorizes thousands of facts, what happens when we get excited and why we need sleep.

This book will allow the child who is reading it to better understand how the human body works.  Packed with detailed information, stunning images and illustrations as well as weird facts, Super Human Encyclopedia will grab the interest of the reader and guide him deeper in the understanding of how the human body works.   And to make it even more interesting, you might have to flip your book sideways to read the information sometimes.

Right now we are studying the bones and the book shows a variety of ways the joints works, how the bones heals themselves, as well as how the skeleton provides body support.   Having athletes demonstrating some of the information included in this book makes it even more visual I find.  

This book is an amazing reference for anyone who is interested in learning how the human body works.   I strongly recommend it to everyone!


9780756689025HThe Big Idea Science Book

About the Book

Take science to a whole new level!

Created in partnership with Prentice Hall, The Big Idea Science Book is a comprehensive guide to key topics in science falling into four major strands (Living Things, Earth Science, Chemistry, and Physics), with a unique difference — a website component with 200 specially created digital assets that provide the opportunity for hands-on, interactive learning.

My Thoughts

Science.  It is part of our lives and our kids need to learn a bit of it in order to understand how the world works.  This fascinating book about science will engage them in a learning experience above anything they have experience before.  This book not only will encourage them to read the information but they can also visualize it by visiting a special website and interacting with it by answering questions.   

Packed with information about almost everything related to science, this book has numerous illustrations, images, and information for the reader.   Also you will find plenty of Did you Know? tidbits of information that will picked your interest.   For example,  did you know that one company improved the fuel efficiency of a car by modeling its design on the shape of a fish or that honey bees visit about two million flowers to make one pound (0.5 kg) of honey?     And I also learned that bright moonlight can cause a “Moonbow” or lunar rainbow.   However it is hard to see the moonbow’s colors because the refracted light is dim.    I didn’t know that there was such a thing as a lunar rainbow.  Fascinating.

At the beginning of the book, you will be introduce to 24 big ideas of science.    Essentially, these big ideas are basic principles which connect and help explain everything you need to know.   The book is divided in three big categories: Life Science, Earth Science, and Physical Science. Each of these categories are color coded so it’s easier to find a section depending of the interest of the child.     Each topic presented in this book is clearly linked back to the big ideas of science presented at the beginning of the book.   One subject often demonstrate a range of scientific principles.  For example when studying human digestion you can rapidly see that  your learn structures in living things are related to their functions, living things get and use energy, and living things maintain constants conditions inside their bodies.

You can also watch science come alive with an interactive website that was created specifically for this book.   This site not only provides interactive lessons but will also challenge the child in answering questions in order to better understands the notions learned.     That website definitively encourage active learning from the children.


I think this book can be a fabulous item for any homeschool families.    It is packed with information and will bring science studies to a new levels with it’s interactive learning with the website.  


There are more books available at DK Canada in their Back to School Boutique.   You will find books for Math, Science, Geography and more.    Whether your child has a special interest in snakes, sharks or frogs or simply wants to learn more about science or history, you can be certain you will finback-to-school-boutique-button-185x185d something interesting in the Back to School Boutique.   And for a limited time DK Canada is offering 30% off on your order in the Back to School Boutique

All these books are available at your favourite bookstore, even and







Disclaimer: Thanks to DK Canada for sending me the above mentioned books for review purposes . I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

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