That’s Mathematics, based on lyrics by Tom Lehrer

Chris Smith, illustrated by Elina Braslina

Remember the periodic table song The Elements? –
‘There’s antimony, arsenic, aluminium, selenium,
And hydrogen and oxygen and nitrogen and rhenium,
And nickel, neodymium, neptunium, germanium,
And iron, americium, ruthenium, uranium…’ etc

This book is based on a song by the same singer-songwriter, Tom Lehrer, and starts with a song called That’s Mathematics. It covers so many areas of mathematics in fun and accessible ways such as counting sheep, baking cakes, estimating gold in an elephant’s ear and much more. The illustrations are vibrant and fun which complements the text wonderfully and help explain the mathematical challenges. As an added bonus there are answers to the maths challenges in the back so the reader is not left in a state of frustration plus a glossary so the less-mathematical brains can understand the terminology.

I enjoyed this book (and I definitely don’t have a maths brain!) It’s a great way of showing how we use mathematics everyday without even realising. In addition to the puzzles in the book there are also supporting activities available to download online. Highly recommended for parents and children alike!

Online resources

Published by Mama Makes Books

Reviewed by Tash Hyde