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From School Library Journal
Gr 6-9--With clear, easy-to-follow explanations, Friedhoffer explores how various tools and devices found in hardware stores rely on basic concepts of physics, such as the inclined plane, mass, buoyancy, and the lever. The presentation is great fun and illustrates how everyday tools must be designed with an appreciation of physical laws. Suggestions for demonstrations using various pieces of hardware equipment are also included. Clear, black-and-white drawings aid in explaining the physics concepts. This title is a companion volume to Physics Lab in a Housewares Store (Watts, 1996), which follows the same concept with tools commonly found in the kitchen. A jarring note to parents and educators states that many of the students who will be attracted to one of the books will probably not be attracted to the other, "due to traditional gender preferences." Given the overlap between the two books, libraries would be well served to purchase one of them, but do not need both.
Alan Newman, American Chemical Society, Washington, DC
This little book of investigations presents a variety of tools (e.g., hammer, screw) that we commonly encounter and illustrates how each is representative of a basic simple machine. The language is clear and easy to understand while applying physics concepts. I would most likely use it as a resource for teaching Applied Physical Science to students who might be difficlut to motovate to learn physics concepts. The appeal of learning about tools that are familiar may be a good motivational technique. If you're a pack-rat of teaching resources like me, you'll find useful information in this inexpensive resource.
This book was just the fit for my needs. It uses everyday hardware items to teach physics concepts. The text is engaging enough you can read right out of the book to the kids. This book is just what I wanted, a book that helps 7-11 year olds understand the abstract concepts of physics by using real world examples.
I got the impression that the book would involve some simple building but there was very little depth to the experiments. Most weren't very clever either - a good experiment for demonstration should always be counterintuitive. Not alot of information that isn't already obvious.