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Sunday, June 7, 2015

Total Tractor, written by Josephine Roberts. DK Canada, 2015. $15.99 ages 7 and up

"Before tractors were invented we relied on steam engines for powering farm machinery and towing heavy loads. Steam engines remained popular until they were replaced by more efficient internal combustion engines - engines that work the same way as those you find in cars today."
This is an informational text that will find fans in many classrooms. Its pages are filled with glorious full color photographs to guide young learners through the plethora of powerful machines that are being used today. There are three chapters, following a quick introduction - Powerful Machines, On the Farm and Beyond the Fields.
Within each section, there are descriptions of each machine mentioned. They are accompanied by captions, labels and an additional fact box that often gives the dimensions and valuable information about production, origin, weight and total power. The variety seems endless, the history informative and attention grabbing. There are archival photos to help readers see how these powerful machines were used in the past.
"During World War II, there was a huge
shortage of farm workers because so
many British men were serving as
soldiers. Hired by the government,
"Land Girls" came to the rescue by
learning how to drive tractors, plow
fields, and harvest crops."
We are invited to see the details of the many tractors described, to get close up and personal with interior views, and take as much time as needed to discover the many amazing characteristics of so many. There is a lot to discover, readers will spend hours learning new 'stuff'!
"Tractors are versatile and can work on many different
types of terrain, but some surfaces demand specialized
wheels or tires. Most tractor wheels and tires can be
removed and changed when necessary. Various tire
tread patterns are used for different kinds of work." 

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