Thursday, July 24, 2014

Star Wars Kidscast meets Star Wars Magazine!

USA & Canada friends check your local magazine shop or newsstand for Issue #2 of Star Wars Magazine! Not only does it feature comics, puzzles, trivia and other fun stuff for younglings, it also happens to contain an article written by Star Wars Kidscast host, creator & blogger Chris Hamilton (me!) 

Pages 30-31 are a humourous piece about getting around on Anakin & Luke's home planet: "Traveling on Tatooine". Let me know what you think in the comments section below, or better yet tell the folks at Star Wars Magazine what you think too! 

More to come in future issues! For more info on Star Wars Magazine click here.

For a look back at earlier Star Wars magazines for kids click here.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Learn Well, You Will: New Star Wars Workbooks

Workman Publishing recently launched Star Wars Workbooks, a new line of educational workbooks to help teach younglings. There are three titles for each age/grade level (Preschool, Kindergarten, 1st Grade and 2nd Grade) focusing on topics of reading, writing and mathematics.

From a Star Wars fan perspective these books are a LOT of fun and feature not only the main characters and planets but also surprise appearances like the Duloks from the 80’s Ewoks cartoon, the Jedi younglings from The Clone Wars. It’s great to see the creators did their Star Wars homework too!

The cartoon artwork throughout each title is superb, often cute and always colorful. The Preschool and Kindergarten books have a visual style reminiscent of the original Clone Wars series and the “older” books remind me of the look of vintage Scooby-Doo or SuperFriends. These are compliments indeed. Looking through these titles makes me long to see more 2-D animation in the Star Wars universe.

Most important, though, is how educationally-sound are they? Do these These titles are from the creators of Brain Quest and have been crafted to work with U.S. “Common Core” curriculum and reinforce classroom learning. Having discused them with teachers and other parents the educational value these books offer becomes clear. The hook is Star Wars but the strength of these books is truly their lesson content. 

I look forward to working with these with my child and recommend them to other parents as well. As the tagline says on each back cover (in Yoda-ese) "Learn well, you will."

-Chris @SWKidscast

For more information visit Workman Publishing.

For more Star Wars-themed educational resources visit Star Wars In the Classroom.

 Here's a look at other Star Wars educational books both classic and current:


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Ultimate Factivity Collection: Star Wars

"Not sure what a 'factivity' is, am I. Fun though, it is."
DK Publishing has a fun, new line of activity books for kids called the Ultimate FACTIVITY Collection. Titles in this series feature Spider-Man, LEGO Chima & LEGO City but most interesting here of course is the Star Wars book!

Ultimate Factivity Collection: Star Wars is 96 pages of Star Wars facts, trivia, games, puzzles, how-to-draw, and stickers galore - more than 500! Most of them have a place inside the book but there are many other “extra” stickers too. Like most DK books this one is filled with photos of the characters, costumes & creatures from the six Star Wars films but this is no mere “sticker book” - there’s plenty to read and do here thanks to authors David Fentiman and Sadie Smith.

There are pages for drawing Darth Vader, a lightsaber duel, and even designing the inside of the Sarlacc creature from Return of the Jedi. There’s also a place for you to create your own starfighter and planet and to write your own Star Wars tales.

The book contains a “Journey Across Naboo” two-page spread like a board game and has many trivia tidbits about Padmé & Jar Jar’s home-world. Unfortunately it isn’t a fold-out or tear-out page so actually playing it would be challenging. You’d have to have something heavy holding the book open or carefully cut the pages out.

If you’re looking for a good rainy-day activity book, or a collection of new Star Wars trivia to quiz your friends, check out the Ultimate Factivity Collection: Star Wars.

Further reading: for more Star Wars drawing fun check out Draw Star Wars: The Clone Wars and

For more activities see our reviews of Star Wars Folded Flyers and Star Wars Thumb Doodles.

Did You Know? Star Wars activity books have been around almost as long as Star Wars itself! Here's a few classics from 1978-79!

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