11.29.2012

Who Do You Think You Are? Be a Family Tree Detective by Dan Waddell, illustrated by Warwick Johnson Caldwell




Before I begin this review, I need to say that I did not realize Who Do You Think You Are is a television show featuring celebrities looking into their family trees... When Who Do You Think You Are : Be a Family Tree Detective hit the shelves of the bookstore where I was working, it seemed like a coo way for kids to delving into their family history. Especially around the holidays when families get together and kids have the chance to ask questions and listen to stories. So, my apologies for inadvertently promoting a television show here, however peripherally.

An interactive book, Who Do You Think You Are : Be a Family Tree Detective comes with all sorts flaps, envelops and goodies that are best discovered by watching the book trailer below. There is an actual family tree poster to be filled in along with a book tucked into the back of the book called "My Treasures" that allows the reader to fill in facts about herself/himself that will help the next generation in filling out the family tree. The book begins by explaining genealogy and includes a "jargon buster" every few pages that is a glossary of terms related to the subject. Next, readers are given tips on how to trace their own family origins, including an explanation of genes. There are interview tips, including a great list of questions to ask. There is a spread that talks about names and how to decode a surname as well as tips on how to use the internet to research family history. Readers learn how to look at photos and examine clothes to determine the time period as well as how to follow a paper trail from birth, marriage and death certificates to reading the census. Waddell uses the final pages of the book to help readers assemble facts about themselves, how to best fill out the treasure book and how to put together a time capsule for future generations!


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