Book Review of The Bridge to Sharktooth Island: A Challenge Island STEAM Adventure
The Children’s Book Review
Written by Sharon Duke Estroff and Joel Ross
Illustrated by Monica de Rivas
Ages 7+ | 124 Pages
Publisher: West Island Press | ISBN: 9781513289533
What to Expect: Teamwork, STEAM, adventure, nature
As well as being a fun, magical adventure reminiscent of the beloved Magic Treehouse series, this first story in the Challenge Island series is packed with STEAM learning, from engineering to biology and physics. It also models practical strategies for using teamwork to achieve goals, encouraging readers to think about how soft skills are essential to STEAM achievements.
Joy and Daniel are smart kids, but they wish something more exciting was on the horizon than the end of winter break and a boring return to school. They should be careful what they wish for, though, because no sooner have they had this thought than they are whisked away from the snowy basketball court where they are building their snowman to a balmy tropical island.
There, they meet Kimani, and the three discover they make a great team: Joy, with her fearlessness; Kimani, with her book smarts; and Daniel, with his careful and cautious attitude. Good thing, too – because the island is very small, the tide is rising, sharks are circling, and their only hope is to work together to figure out how to get across the stretch of quicksand to the safety of the larger island they can see, so tantalizingly close across the waves.
Daniel, Joy, and Kimani are realistic and relatable, and they make a fun team. Black and white illustrations throughout the story help readers understand the STEAM concepts and the team’s solutions to the problems they face. At the end of the book, facts and activities encourage readers to get hands-on with their learning.
The Bridge to Sharktooth Island is a promising series for building STEAM knowledge and enthusiasm that readers are sure to enjoy.
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About the Author
Joel Ross is a writer and author of children’s books and adult books, including The Fog Diver, which received the Cybils Award and named to the Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List. Joel lives in Santa Barbara, California.
Sharon Duke Estroff is founder and creator of the Challenge Island, a STEAM program created for children’s education and enrichment to teach twenty-first-century skills through project-based learning. Sharon is also an author and an award-winning elementary school teacher, parenting and education expert, speaker, and freelance writer with work published in numerous publications, including Scholastic, Parent and Child, Woman’s Day, and Good Housekeeping magazines. She continues her passion in children’s education and running the Challenge Island program from her home in Atlanta, Georgia.
About the Illustrator
Mónica de Rivas is a children’s book illustrator who has published her work internationally, from Europe to North America to Asia. Ever since she was a young girl, she loved drawing, reading, and writing stories. She studied illustration at the School of Art and Design San Telmo, Malaga, and specializes in digital illustration. Mónica currently lives in Spain.
Dr. Jen Harrison reviewed The Bridge to Sharktooth Island: A Challenge Island STEAM Adventure. Discover more books like A Brief History of Life on Earth by reading our reviews and articles tagged with Teamwork, Adventure, and Nature.