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The Magic School Bus At The Waterworks Paperback – February 1, 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
An eccentric teacher takes her class on an adventure through the city waterworks and teaches science painlessly. Ages 6-9.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From School Library Journal
Grade 2-4A remarkable meshing of text and illustration make this an outstand ing, lively treatment of a subject for which there is very little written for this age group. Ms. Frizzle has assigned her class a month-long investigation of how their city gets its water supply, to be followed by a field trip to the water works. With ``The Friz'' as driver, the children encounter surprise after sur prise, as they are magically clad in scu ba gear while in a tunnel, then slowly ascend to a cloud, where each child dis embarks; falls as a drop of water into a mountain stream; flows into a reser voir; and bounces through the purifica tion system, pipes, and water mains un der the city streets. The trip ends with all arriving, drop by drop, in the girls' bathroom in their school as a seventh grader turns on the water faucet. A sub sequent classroom mural is drawn of their field trip with the interesting facts of water posted above. Not such a bad trip after all! Liveliness and humor combine to provide valuable informa tion in a simple, explicit text, totally complemented by cheery cartoon-like illustrations. A finishing flourish are the two pages of humorous and lightheart ed notes (for SERIOUS students only) at the text's end. This book will rarely sit on the shelf.Mary Lou Budd, Mil ford South Elementary School, Ohio
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Unknown Binding edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Cole and Degen successfully blend fun and learning into their stories, striking a resonant chord with kids and parents alike. Because, let's face it, education - no matter what subject you're delving into - can be a tad boring at times. But anyone who's ever worked with children knows that adding a pinch of excitement and a smidgeon of enjoyment into the knowledge pot takes an otherwise bland topic and transforms it into something delectable.
"At the Waterworks" introduces us to Ms. Frizzle, a one-of-a-kind instructor who knows how to take seemingly uninspiring themes and metamorphose them into action-packed adventures. The kids in her class consider Ms. Frizzle "the strangest teacher in school." And they are less than enthused when they find out their first class trip is the local waterworks; it seems to pale in comparison to field trips other classes are taking, such as to the circus or to the zoo. But these students have obviously never gone on a class trip with Ms. Frizzle; nor have they ever taken a ride in her magic school bus.
Before they know it, Ms. Frizzle has sent them on a splashing journey. They learn all about the wonders of water; how it is the only substance in nature that can form into a solid, liquid or gas. They come to understand the water cycle; how water evaporates into a gas to form clouds and liquefies as it falls to the ground as rain. They even take a tour of the local waterworks; how water is filtered and purified for people to drink, and how it is distributed throughout the city in underground pipes to businesses and homes.
Needless to say, the children in Ms. Frizzle's class experience a once-in-a-lifetime voyage, one they won't ever forget! And for those "serious students who do not like any kidding around when it comes to science facts," the final pages distinguish what things were true in the story and what things were made up.
Cole and Degen hit the children's literacy jackpot with this series, and it all started with "At the Waterworks." This book was written in 1986, and the "Magic School Bus" is still riding strong - it has spawned numerous picture books, chapter books, a cartoon show, television tie-in books, computer games, etc. The key to its success lies in the fact that it mixes education with a hearty dose of humor and fun. And when you stir those ingredients together, you have a winning formula.
You cannot go wrong with Ms. Frizzle and her magic school bus. These books are so enjoyable, children and parents alike delight in them. I don't know why it took me so long to discover this series, but I'm glad it happened! I cannot say enough great things about it! Do yourself a favor and read a few of these stories; you will not regret it.
As Ms. Frizzle herself would say, "It's time to take chances! Make mistakes! And get messy!"
The obvious layer is the text. There is plenty of information from just reading the text. If you want to add more, read the dialogue between the characters, written cartoon style in balloons. The most detail would come from the children's sketches and notes that are in the (very wide) margins.
I like the scheme of taking the children through the system and coming out the other end. Children usually find the fantasy of changing size to be fascinating as well. To my knowledge, the book is factual and fairly well up to date.
As a seamstress, I love Ms Frizzle's clothing and accessories.
We got this book at a yard sale and my 4.5 year old loves it. I like it too - I learned things I didn't know. Just don't expect to like Ms. Frizzle - she is a tool. Of the author!
Just turning on the water faucet is now a starter of intelligent conversation.