Glowing with Electricity by Thomas Kingsley Troupe

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As the subtitle suggests, an origami firefly narrates Glowing with Electricity: Science Adventures with Glenda the Origami Firefly by Thomas Kingsley Troupe, illustrated by Jamey Christoph (Picture Window Books, 2015). Glenda the origami firefly, hanging outside a home, teaches the real fireflies why and how the backdoor lamp glows. The origami firefly story frame may sound childish, but the entire book doesn’t feel that way at all. In fact, it provides a nice overall introduction to electricity for young readers, within a highly approachable context.

Glenda introduces the concept of electricity at the atomic level. She also goes over basics of electricity, such as the fact that a switch breaks a circuit so the electricity will no long reach a lamp. But these basics are not just glossed over. Diagrams help underscore the science behind her explanations. The details included stretches to power plants, generators, and transformers in addition to the basics.

Sidebars also explain more on each page, making this book suitable for study as well as a read aloud. Finally, end matter provides a glossary, instructions for making your own origami firefly, and an index. In all, Glowing with Electricity becomes an educational picture book that teaches with a fun context just right for a young reader.

Reviewed on October 9, 2023

About the author 

Rebecca Reid

Rebecca Reid is a homeschooling, stay-at-home mother seeking to make the journey of life-long learning fun by reading lots of good books. Rebecca Reads provides reviews of children's literature she has enjoyed with her children; nonfiction that enhances understanding of educational philosophies, history and more; and classical literature that Rebecca enjoys reading.

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