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A Million Dots

Sven Voelker



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01 September 2019
Children's & Educational
Winner of the New York Times Top 10 Best Illustrated Children's Books of 2019.

A book to promote interest in numbers and wonder at the scale they can represent, with lots to interrogate and talk about. -- School Library Association Potential goldmine of teaching ideas. -- School Reading List Double the numbers to go from 1 to 1,000,000 in 40 pages. A stunning visualization of numbers big and small.

We start with a single tree; 1. As we turn the page, we are presented with a sum doubling the number on the page before it: 1+1 = 2; 2+2 = 4; 4+4 = 8. In this way, we reach a million (actually 1,048,576) within 44 pages.

Each sum is brought to life with a simple graphic illustration in the distinctive style of Sven Voelker. The dots form the back of a ladybird, the bubbles in a cup of soda and the water in a swimming pool. On each page, a single neon dot illustrates what one means in the context of the sum.

Gloriously simple in its concept and execution, this is a book that will bring mathematics alive to parents as well as children and will also make a stunning gift book.
By:   Sven Voelker
Imprint:   CICADA
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 280mm,  Width: 210mm, 
Weight:   490g
ISBN:   9781908714664
ISBN 10:   1908714662
Pages:   44
Publication Date:   01 September 2019
Audience:   Children/juvenile ,  English as a second language
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Sven Voelker is a Berlin-based, award-winning graphic designer and illus - trator. He has designed identities and campaigns for Suzuki, Volkswagen and BMW. His large scale installations have been exhibited in Norway, Prague, Basel and Bern. He is the author of Go Faster (Gestalten, 2010) and There's a Little Black Dot on the Sun Today (Nord/Sud, 2015).

Reviews for A Million Dots

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY REVIEW: Minimalist design meets math in this mind-boggling visualization of numbers up to more than one million. Starting with one tree--a large green circle stacked atop a small brown rectangle--then two; subsequent spreads double numbers as a page turn reveals four apples on the branch, then eight on the ground beneath their autumnal parents. From 16 on, the arboreal thread is dropped as disparate images help readers envisage the sums: a ladybug sports 16 spots, a glass of effervescent drink fizzes with 128 bubbles, and 256 freckles span a face. As the numerical figures increase in size, the dots become smaller until a single page cannot contain them: the final two numbers (the last count is 1,048,576) require large gatefolds to display enough minute, pixel-like dots, an effect as astonishing as it is efficient. Likely to be a hit among educators, Volker's volume succeeds at engagingly merging art and counting. Ages 4-12. YOUTH SERVICES BOOK REVIEW: There is not a story but there can be some interesting discussion associated with this book. While reading, kids can chime in on other things that might have 16 dots, or 1,024 dots or even 1,048,576 dots-could lend itself to some lively discussion. As an added bonus, the last page opens up to reveal a panoramic page that is about 4 feet long -- kids love this kind of thing! PARENTS IN TOUCH REVIEW: This is one for everyone who has wondered at the sheer enormity of numbers - and they will be even more in awe by the time they've finished! PAUL ET PAULA REVIEW: 'A new book favourite in our house and oh so cute. And oh so wonderfully illustrated... and it includes some maths too!' NORTH SOMERSET TEACHERS BOOK AWARDS REVIEW: 'Starting with a single tree, 'A Million Dots' introduces the number one. Simple and uncluttered, it stands proudly alone, but turning the page sees this doubled to two trees. Next, four red apples stand out against their green leaves. As the trees turn brown, eight red apples lie on the ground. On each spread, the numbers double until the reader sees 1,048,576 dots in the final six page pull-out. On the left hand page, the number in digits is clearly written whilst at the top of the opposite page the answer is written in words above its dotted representation. This is itself offers much potential for discussion about how we record numbers (both in digits and words), number patterns, doubling, repeated addition, etc, but the simple graphic illustration which accompanies each number offers so much more. Children are fascinated by big numbers and when I presented them with this book, they instantly wanted to check that the sum was correct - and then count the number of dots! With the lower numbers, this was easy, but it soon led to conversations about finding shortcuts and using what they know about number to help them. The pictures where the majority of dots are arranged into rectangles allowed them to count columns and rows whereas the scattered pictures produced different challenges. Were there 2,048 stars reflected in the ocean the boat sails on? Was the moon-and its reflection- included in the total count? The quality of mathematical language and thinking, however, was amazing to listen to. There were, of course, those who just wanted to believe all the dots were there and just enjoy the concept and artwork! The choice of image also provoked discussion. Are the 64 dots Smarties tumbling from a tube? Confetti from a party popper? Is that the pink tail of the mouse curled round the edge of the page opposite? How many pages would a picture containing 2,097,152 dots need? How small would those dots need to be? The effect of the dots as they got smaller and closer together also led to discussions about pointillism and the work of artists like Georges Seurat. Simple, yet stunning, 'A Million Dots' is a great book for exploring and discussing numbers wherever you are! IT'S ALL ABOUT STORIES FB REVIEW: 'The simple but powerful story is a visual tale of one dot doubling on each page to become 1,048,576 dots! A wonderfully simple way to introduce young children to concepts of number.'

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