Reviews for Build Your Own Periscope, Flashlight, and Other Useful Stuff

School Library Journal Reviews 2011 April

Gr 5-8--Those who choose to mix epoxy instead of watercolors and feel more comfortable in a hardware store than an art store are the target audience for this series. With a utility knife, electric drill, and handsaw included in the list of needed tools, there are recurring reminders to ask an adult for help. Other more-than-appropriate suggestions deal with safety concerns--securing the area before letting the helicopter launcher fly (Car), making sure the old-fashioned tree swing is far enough away from the tree trunk (Mini Golf), etc. Though there is not a discernible progression for the projects' difficulty, there is a sense that the best has been saved for last. Some of these showstoppers are a pop gun (which the writer assures is a toy and not dangerous), a water blaster rocket, and an igloo, all of which require some tool savvy and a meticulous nature. Snowshoes and a leaf hut made from branches have an outdoor, survival gear appeal, but no matter what the project, readers will need a good amount of elbow grease and patience to see it through to its completion.

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