Monday, April 7, 2014

Poptropica Mythology

Author:  Tracey West
Published:  2007
Play the game if you must.
I purchased this book because at the end of the year, after SOLs, my team thought it would be fun to have the children learn about mythology.  We want to create a museum to teach other students about mythology and Greek history.

This was not the book to buy.  I read it and it had so little information that it is actually difficult to remember what I read.  Information on each of the 12 Olympians is limited to 2 pages each.  There are no stories to go along with each Olympian to help me learn about them, just a brief overview.  I should have looked through the book a bit better when I purchased it, but it looked like something my students would enjoy looking through.  The pictures are fun, but it is difficult to distinguish one god from another because they all look so much alike as these Poptropica characters.

I loved mythology growing up and read books filled with the stories of the gods.  This book is just an overview and would help you find out a bit about a particular god, but it is not going to inspire anyone to read more about them.  Children that only have this book as a resource will not continue reading about mythology. 

I will use this book as a quick reference for me and perhaps point out a few pages for my low-level readers, but I will find another resource that will be more inspiring.

The most disappointing feature in the book was the reference to the website and the mythology game that can be played.  The book is more of an advertisement for that website.  So, I went to the website to play the game.  Maybe I'm just old, but it was awful.  I met Hercules and could get my picture taken with him for 10 drachmas.  I didn't learn one thing about Hercules in the game.  Would a child wonder what a drachma was and research it?  I doubt it.  I've seen my kids play video games.  There is no reading happening.  They are running through the game as quickly as possible to win without regard for anything else.

I may be the completely wrong audience for this book, so please take that into account with my opinion.  I'm looking at the book as someone who wants to learn more about mythology and someone who is considering a book to share with a third grade class. 

I am now on a search for a better book.  I know I read a good one when I was a child and I was motivated to read more.  I doubt this book will do that for anyone.

If you feel that you just must check this book out from the library, click here. 
Learn about Greek Mythology (The Online World of Rick Riordan)

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