Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Rand McNally Kids' Road Atlas (Backseat Books)
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on August 18, 2006
I bought this expecting simple maps that my daughter could use to track the routes we were driving. Well, it's simplistic all right. It doesn't mark many of the cities we drive through. It is more of a car activity book. It's got puzzles and games to keep children busy, but its maps are more like general overviews of the states. For children younger than seven, this is probably good. Older children would most likely prefer a real road atlas with all the roads and cities marked.
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on July 27, 2005
We bought a book for each of our two children. Our eight-year-old stayed busy with the puzzles, and had lots of questions about things on the maps which made for good car conversation (and good geography lessons for all of us). The best part was marking off our route with a highlighter pen at every rest stop; she could track our progress along the way and see exactly what town we were stopping in next. It made the "how much longer?" questions easier to answer ("Look on your map!"). Our six-year-old was slightly too young for some of the puzzles, but liked highlighting the route as well as marking off the license plate state chart (hint: Mt. Rushmore is a treasure trove of license plates!). We will use these atlases on every car trip. Highly recommended.
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VINE VOICEon November 5, 2006
This would be a better book if it also included an overall map of the country showing all the states, and an index listing each state alphabetically and by region and page number.
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on July 6, 2007
The title of this book is misleading-it's not actually an atlas-but it is a great puzzle book! Each page has a state (similar in concept to an atlas) and a puzzle related to the state. There are a variety of puzzles, and kids use the simple maps to help figure out some of the answers. My 6-year-old and 8-year-old have really enjoyed the book. On a long airplane trip, my son worked the puzzles for each state as we flew over it. It's a great and fun way to begin reading maps, too! This book is a superb deal for the price. Actually, all the books in this series are!
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on May 31, 2012
Don't expect this to be an atlas you would use for nagivational purposes. It has a map of every state, which includes major landmarks, highways, and parks. It doesn't tell you coordinates in latitude in longitude, but kids are taught to locate certain parks and cities coordinated by letters and numbers (e.g. A1, B4, F5, etc.). I prefer this book over the Best Travel Activity Book Ever, AA (Backseat Books) because it reviews the abbreviations; lists each of the state trees, birds, flowers, nicknames, and capitals; and the activities actually involve utilizing the maps.

I recommend this for any elementary school aged kid, and I would also suggest it as a great gift idea for any kid who travels a lot. The only complaint I have about this book is that it should have at least one full map of the United States so that kids have a better reference of where each state is located in relation to others.
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on May 19, 2009
I've purchased all three of the books in this series, one for each of our children for our upcoming trip. Of the three (Kid's Road Atlas, Are We There Yet, and the Best Travel Activity Book Ever), this one is the most "educational"

Highlights:

*Good overview of the 50 states with basic highlights for each state (state bird, flower, tree, capital, nickname and a color map)

*There is a puzzle/game on each state page. All of them are connected to the state thematically or factually. The games vary in degree of difficulty and amount of writing required. I'd say our nine-year old could do all of them...our seven year old would be able to do some but not all. Some are quick (2 minutes or less), others are rather involved (15-30 minutes)

*To respond to another reviewer's comment, I did not find the state maps to be overly simplistic. For North Carolina, it lists about 50 towns/cities, all the interstates and some of the state roads, some of the bigger lakes, parks, etc. Especially if you are traveling across several states, this map is enough that they could kind of follow the route, noting towns along the way without being overwhelmed.

*It includes a few pages of map skills at the beginning, and an answer and index at end. It covers all fifty states, and one page for Canada and Mexico.

*It has extended use even after activities are completed as a simple atlas--the pencil games don't mark up the maps--all pages are color.

*Not as glitzy as some, but it should keep my child entertained for awhile while providing some educational value. Plus the price is reasonable.
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on July 23, 2007
We recently met in Iowa for a family reunion and our grandchildren were there from CA. I got this book to give them for their return car trip home so they could see where they had been. Mom and Dad always have their own atlas, but this one is great for kids. And, they had to share it. Even though the suggested age for this book is older, the 6 and 7 year old grandkids had no trouble with it. And, if they did, it just created conversation with each other and their parents.
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on September 10, 2012
This book was perfect for our long car trip. My eight year old loved finding and reading about each state as we crossed state lines. The activities even taught her map reading skills in a fun way. She chose our route and let us know what cities we would pass through. I marked points of interests in it and when she found them we rewarded her with a small prize. This would be perfect as a learning tool in homeschool or as a supplement to traditional school lessons. It's also great for military families to use as a travel journal before and during a PCS move.
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on June 29, 2011
This atlas is a great starter atlas for kids 7 to 9. Maps are detailed but easy to read. If you travel off the beaten path smaller communities will not be included but does give the over all larger cities and communities in a state as a good reference to your proximity. This book provides interesting fun facts and games to keep kids occupied for long journeys. Not so large that the book won't fit into a smaller (kid size) back pack, but not so small that the maps cannot be read.
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on October 30, 2015
My twins have used this Atlas several times as we take road trips. It was nice to hear them talk about each state as we passed through. Teaches children things about each state. Such as state bird, capital etc. Very nice.
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