As the boundaries of our world change, so must our atlases. This generously sized 2003 edition of the award-winning National Geographic World Atlas for Young Explorers
reflects the latest-possible place-name and boundary changes and features a new 16-page section on the world's oceans (including maps and illustrated essays) and an expanded U.S. section that provides an in-depth look at each region. If you are unfamiliar with the format of previous editions, expert National Geographic cartographers have designed more than 115 pages of colorful, easy-to-read, full-spread political (names and boundaries of countries), physical (land forms and water features), and thematic (displaying patterns such as climate) maps for children ages 8 to 12. All maps are shown in the context of surrounding areas. The plentiful color photographs, illustrations, and charts make this an interesting book to casually peruse, as do engaging captions about everything from golden toads to Pueblo Indian artists. The maps themselves are labeled with large, legible type. Students will also find a glossary of geographic terms, a chart of key world facts and figures, conversion tables, and a detailed index. A fine atlas for school projects or for browsing through on a rainy day. (Ages 8 to 12) --Karin Snelson
From School Library Journal
Grade 4-8-This new edition of an essential resource incorporates the latest global changes in place-names, boundaries, and statistics. Though the general appearance, at first glance, seems nearly identical to the 1998 edition, a careful look reveals that many explanations have been rewritten in clearer language or lengthened. Likewise, the majority of striking color photos remains intact, though new images and captions have been added. In the first section, "The World," new spreads on "People" and "World Economies" have replaced "Population Density" and "Transportation and Communication." Continent fact boxes reflect population shifts and changes in life expectancy. (Somewhat puzzling is the fact that the area of the U.S. seems to have increased by nearly 100,000 square miles in the past five years.) There are several new or updated country flags. The most striking addition, however, is the 14-page section on the world's oceans, which begins with marine life, followed by a fascinating discussion of the challenges of mapping the ocean floor. Another spread likens the ocean to "the Earth's radiator," explaining how it warms and controls climate. The oversized, attractive layout and engaging, easy-to-read text make this the clear choice for reference collections.Barbara Auerbach, New York City Public Schools
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