written by David A. Adler; illustrated by Edward Miller
(Holiday House) 2010
Source: Mebane Public Library
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If you are teaching a unit on space and the earth's rotation, Time Zones would be a good resource for explaining why different places on the planet have different times. Author David A. Adler tells the history behind the creation of time zones and why it became necessary to invent them. For example, in the late 1700's it wasn't really important for time zones to exist since people couldn't travel very far in a day's time. Travelers simply reset their clocks or watches when they arrived in a new place. They would set them by the town clock or set their timepiece at noon if the sun was directly overhead. Train travel prompted railroad companies to set time zones in 1883 for North America and an international conference the next year set them for the rest of the planet. With the help of Edward Miller's humorous and informative illustrations, Adler is able to deliver interesting information like why time zone boundaries have such strange shapes. My favorite piece of information that I learned was that China and India, despite their geographic size, each have only one time zone.