Sydney & Simon: To the Moon!
Paul A. Reynolds, author
Paul A. Reynolds’s childhood home was as lively as Sydney and Simon’s. His family’s ginormous supply of pencils, paper, books, and art was referred to as “the creativity tools.” Today Paul exercises his imagination at FableVision Studios, a media company he founded with his twin brother, Peter. Together they create storytelling technology, such as websites, games, and animated films. Paul is also the author of the children’s book Going Places. He lives in Dedham, Massachusetts, where his wife manages The Blue Bunny, the family’s bookstore.
Read more about Paul A. Reynolds.
Peter H. Reynolds, illustrator
Peter H. Reynolds learned early on that two minds are better than one. Like his twin, Paul, he believes that the arts help us solve problems and understand the world. Peter has written and illustrated many books for children, including The Dot, Ish, and The Smallest Gift of Christmas. He also illustrates Megan McDonald’s Judy Moody series. Peter lives in Dedham, Massachusetts, where his wife runs an art gallery just across the street from The Blue Bunny.
Read more about Peter H. Reynolds.
- Coming Soon!
The STEAM twins are back in a new adventure (Go Green!, 2015, etc.), this time competing against each other to win a chance to meet famous astronaut Cmdr. Kris Kornfield. As soon as she spies the poster announcing the contest, creative, artsy Sydney has her idea—a 3-D model of the moon—and for a change, she isn't sharing it with her twin: she wants to win more than she wants to team with her brother. Simon is rather at loose ends on his own but makes observations and does research about the moon each night, educating readers about its phases and introducing solid science vocabulary. The mouse twins' parents subtly try to point out the two are missing critical pieces, but it's not until Ms. Fractalini introduces them to the work of Galileo that the twins see what's missing. Now a team, they use a homemade telescope to make observations and the 3-D printer in the Makerspace Lab of their public library to print an accurate puzzle of the moon's phases. Their classmates' projects don't all combine all the STEAM elements: there's a poem, a crater model, a spaceship model, and a toothpick house that might someday be built on the moon. In this outing, the Reynoldses make Simon and Sydney a bit more kidlike than in prior outings, with their flaws and their enthusiasm. The learning readers will pick up about the moon is virtually painless, and Cmdr. Kornfield's reveal is a nice touch. Another STEAM winner.
School Library Journal
An interesting situation arises when the competitive twins decide to participate against each other in a special STEAM contest about the Earth’s moon. Sydney and Simon are eager to win the first place prize: to meet astronaut Commander Kris Kornfield. The siblings usually work well together as a team, but this time they have own ideas and secretly work hard on their projects. Unfortunately, they each appear to be missing an important aspect to make the presentation complete. Simon puts a lot of effort into his research about the phases of the moon, but his plan lacks a creative piece. Meanwhile, Sydney is busy painting a model of the moon but has neglected to do any of the necessary research. The two discuss their dilemma and decide they need to use “twinergy” to put together a “twinning” project. This story is a good bridge to early chapter books. The chapters are short and will not overwhelm young readers. The pen-and-ink illustrations provide children with images to help them visualize and process the words they are reading. STEAM thinking, which incorporates imagination and creativity, is strongly promoted. The book also encourages children to collaborate and value the talents of others. Readers can learn a great deal of information about the moon and its phases. The glossary provides simple definitions and useful information. VERDICT An easy-to-read title for STEAM learning and nonfiction fans. Young readers will want to go to the moon and back with Syd and Simon.
ISBN: 978-1-60734-969-3 EPUB
ISBN: 978-1-60734-970-9 PDF
Page count: 48
6 x 9
Correlated to Common Core State Standards:
English Language Arts-Literacy. Reading Literature. Grade 2. Standards 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
English Language Arts-Literacy. Reading Literature. Grade 3. Standards 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10