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Reviewed by Amy Raines for Readers' Favorite
The ABC’s of African American Inventions is written and illustrated by Kenneth R. McClelland. The entries in this book have been chosen to help kids learn their ABC’s and the history of African American inventions and the cultural diversity and number of people involved in the creation of those inventions. For example, jacks that are now commonly used to lift up heavy things like cars were invented in 1930 by a gentleman named Charles M. Banks. Also, the curling iron (aka Permanent Wave Machine) was invented by a woman named Marjorie Stewart Joyner in 1928. Learning the alphabet should be fun, so why not take a trip through the culturally diverse history of inventions that shaped the world we know today?
The ABC’s of African American Inventions is one of the most unique and interesting educational books I have had the privilege of reading. I love Kenneth R. McClelland’s way of listing an item with the name of the inventor, along with when it was invented, and a few more inventions that start with the same letter. The illustrations are beautifully done so that kids can see what the invention is as well as learning something about the item. This book takes learning the alphabet to the next level by adding the history of inventions that not only include the roles of African Americans in the listings but women as well! The fun facts that are listed at the bottom of each page give this book an added layer of education that every teacher will totally enjoy. The fact is inventors come in a variety of genders, shapes, sizes, colors, and ethnicities, and so should the readers!