From the Series Cool Castles and Palaces
In this book, early fluent readers will marvel at the beauty and magnitude of the Forbidden City while learning about its history, location, many buildings, and art. Vibrant, full-color photos and carefully leveled text will engage young readers as they learn more about the palace’s cultural history.
A Take a Look! infographic aids understanding, sidebars present interesting, supplementary information, and an At a Glance recap offers a map and quick stats on the palace. Children can learn more about the Forbidden City using our safe search engine that provides relevant, age-appropriate websites. Forbidden City also features reading tips for teachers and parents, a table of contents, a glossary, and an index.
Forbidden City is part of Jump!’s Cool Castles and Palaces series.
|Interest Level||Grade 2 - Grade 5|
|Reading Level||Grade 2|
|Category||C3 Social Studies, New!|
|Number of Pages||24|
Readers are given keys to some of the world’s most lavish and secretive abodes when they pick up the Cool Castles and Palaces series. Each book focuses on one royal dwelling, offering a snapshot of its history, inhabitants, layout, function today, and, of course, copious photos. Inviting layouts utilize large illustrations (either photographs or a simple diagram of a floor plan or estate grounds), descriptive captions, and a paragraph or two of large-sized text, placed against a colorful background. Buckingham Palace bears the distinction of still being used by British royals today, and kids will marvel at its 775 rooms (including 78 bathrooms!) and a cleverly hidden door. Using a senstaional opening, Dracula’s Castle quickly debunks the vampiric reputation of Romania’s Bran Castle but notes how it inspired Dracula author Bram Stoker’s description of his fictional Count’s home. Readers return to Imperial China in Forbidden City, which explains different parts of this palace complex. Another sprawling estate is detailed in Palace of Versailles, though the text acknowledges how France’s poor weren’t fans of its extravagance. Each volume is divided into three chapters and concludes with at-a-glance facts and geographic map. Textual repetition and bolded glossary terms help support independent reading–guided reading tips and activities are also available to educators–resulting in a well-structured but fun entry into non-fiction.
Series Made Simple
Authors invite readers to embark on a tour of each castle or palace, with sentences like “Atop an extinct volcano in Edinburgh, Scotland, sits a fortress. It is more than 600 years old.” A table of contents, color photographs, sidebars, critical thinking questions, a location map, a layout of the castle or palace, basic facts about the structure, a glossary, and an index make up each title. No source notes or a recommended reading are included but the authors link instructions for how to access the publisher’s proprietary website, where readers can search and find resources related to each book’s content. VERDICT This is an inviting, Western-centered series that, despite some issues, gives readers a good overview and a critical look at the featured castles and palaces.