138. Step Into The ... Chinese Empire by Philip Steele

Step Into The ... Chinese Empire by Philip Steele
Step Into ... series

Rating: (5/5)

(US) - (Canada)

1998, Lorenz Books, 64 pgs
Age: 8+

"Step into the amazing world of the Chinese Empire and uncover the secrets of the world's oldest continuous civilisation. Explore Chinese culture and beliefs, from their ancient origins through to the abdication of the last emperor. Discover fascinating facts about the Chinese people and find out why tombs were filled with pottery figures, who the terracotta warriors were, what the importance of jade was and how silk was made.  
A variety of practical projects bring the past alive, fly your own dragon kite; make a model of Han house; make an abacus; create and use ancient printing blocks; build a pagoda; cook red bean soup, and explore many other easy-to-do practical ideas that will vividly bring history into the present. The projects are shown in specially commissioned step-by-step photography and will make learning stimulating, exciting and fun, either at home or in the classroom.
Children will learn about ancient Chinese weapons, warfare, inventions, fashion, food, politics, religion, art, sports and much much more. Stirring fact-packed text, over 200 beautiful colour photographs and 100 illustrations make this accessible and enjoyable history an ideal accompaniment to school work, or a perfect additional learning tool at home."

Purchased a copy from Bookcloseouts a very long time ago!.

A very basic brief overview of an enormous topic that manages to squeeze in as much information as possible through words and photographs.  Each two-page spread covers one topic such as art, silk, soldiers,  the written word, inventions, etc. If you are familiar with a DK (Dorling Kindersley) book then this is exactly what you can expect here.  In fact the book is written by an author who has written for DK, as well.  An entertaining, easy to read and informative few paragraphs of text start off each spread then captions beneath the photographs enhance the information.  The beginning of the book has a timeline running along the bottom of the pages and throughout the book there are "craft" projects occasionally along the bottom edge of some spreads.  These "crafts" are for hardcore hands-on types though as they all require items not exactly found around the house and will take time and effort to make.  The finished projects will be worth the effort though.  These are not toilet roll and pipe cleaner projects!  I love Chinese history and found this book, though of course only a starting, or jumping off, point to be entirely readable and informative while at the same time being entertaining.  I'd never attempt the projects with own kids, not my style, but would recommend the book for those looking for a basic spine to work from while studying Ancient China.


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