Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Numbed! - Review

I jumped at the chance to review Numbed! by David Lubar. My kids read Punished! a year or so ago and thought it was great fun. When I saw that this book was coming out soon, was available for review and it was about math, I knew it was something I would had to have my kids read.

I downloaded it my kindle and then asked Henry, my 8 year old, if he would like to read a book for me. I figured since he is the age of the target audience, and a somewhat reluctant reader, he would be the perfect kid for the job. I explained that this was a book that hadn't been released yet and that he could read it before most kids. He broke out into a Cheshire cat like grin. I don't know if it was because it was an "advance copy" and he felt special or because I was letting him use my kindle. I then told him he would have to help me write a review of the book. The grin faded a bit at that but he still agreed.

He read two or three chapters a day and finished it pretty quickly. He never complained when I reminded him to read this book.c

Logan and Benedict go on a field trip to the Math Museum. They think it is boring. They leave their group and get blasted by a robot named Cypher while they are in a part of the museum that isn't open to the public. They return home but realize they can't do math anymore. They can't count, tell time, count money, they can't even help dad make pancakes because they can't measure the amount of milk they need for the recipe. They realize Math is important and that they use it for lots of everyday things without even recognizing it. The boys head back to the museum to get Cypher to return their math skills.

The boys talk to Cypher's creator, Dr. Thagoras who tells them that they will have to go through a series of rooms to gain back their math skills. They answer math problems so they that can move from room to room and in the process figure out that math really is important and certainly not boring.

After Henry started reading the book and I read a chapter or two aloud my 10 year old and my 12 year old also decided they needed to read this book too. I guess it was just too fun and entertaining for them to miss. Sophie of course read it very quickly and Ian just read from the part I read aloud to the end. They all enjoyed it. I am happy to have them read books that make Math more than just a series of problems in their workbooks. Showing how math fits into everyday life is important for them to understand. It is a great help to have books like this that are fun but instructional. We had to look up and make Mobis Strips after reading the chapter where the boys travel along one. I love it when books create questions that they boys want to find the answers to.

Henry hasn't read Punished, the first book in this series. Sophie and Ian read it and still remember it.  I think we will be picking it up at the library this week. We may also have to see what other books David Lubar has written. We certainly have enjoyed these two.

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