The Industrial Revolution For Kids looks and reads very much like a textbook from the 1980s. It features a lot of great information, some photographs from the period, call outs of particular individuals and their lives, and then the hands on crafts. Although there was a bit of a disconnect between the presentation and text (the presentation was geared more for Junior High level students but the text read very much like elementary school), the book is informative enough to be a good teaching aid, especially for homeschooled children.
The book breaks down as follows: A Time of Sweeping Change, New Ways of Working, New Ways of Living, Kids at Work, Catastrophes, Unions, and Strikes, Helps and Hope For Better Lives, A New Culture Emerges, Epilogue, Resources, Notes, and Bibliography. I read this with my 11 year old on a Kindle cloud reader on my computer and a Kindle Fire. Some of the formatting did get to be a bit wonky, especially captions under images or callouts.
The hands on projects for each section (there are 3-4 per section above) include: crack a code, make an assembly line sandwich, prepare a miner’s lunch, model an elevator, inflate a dollar, create an early 1900s diary, do detective work, tell a story with photographs, investigate the science of bicycling, and design a product for the World’s Fair.
The callouts with personal experiences are colored blue and stand out from the regular text nicely. Individuals from Ida Tarbell to a cotton mill worker in Massachusetts are some of the individuals profiled. Some of the crafts have illustrations but nearly every other graphic is a black and white photograph from the period (which I prefer over modern day illustrations ‘recreating’ a scene). The book is a bit text heavy, I would have liked even more photographs, but I do appreciate the depth of the information presented.
In all, I’m glad I bought it and can use it to discuss/educate my 11 year old about the industrial revolution period.