Homeschooler Celena discovers a comic-style book for kids to learn about databases!
I’d been eyeing the new Manga books after hearing great things about them from my homeschool group and was thrilled to get my hands on The Manga Guide to Databases. Immediately upon thumbing through it and seeing the vast pages of comic book-style instruction, I was struck by its awesomeness!
The Manga Guide to Databases is the perfect book for anyone (teen or adult) who wants to learn about databases without the tediousness that usually comes with such a subject. The story is fun and the drawings are just what you’d expect in any manga comic. It’s the perfect book for on-the-go, either driving or flying. We’ll be taking a vacation next month and I’m planning to bring a few Manga Guides along for the kids to read on the plane.
My daughter loves the comic book style, loved the characters who look so much like our beloved Sailor Moon, and is interested in computers because her dad works on them.
The book starts with the assumption that you know nothing at all about databases which I thought was perfect! It’s simple, a bit repetitious, though in a helpful way (the comic story goes over something which is then explained in more detail in the following text section), and it definitely has me wanting to purchase more of the Manga Guides on different subjects.
This is not your typical textbook
This book is a great introductory text to database-backed applications. The Manga Guide to Databases is about 300 pages long. A little more than half is comic book-style learning, while a little less than half is traditional textbook-style with questions and answers.
The story in The Manga Guide to Databases goes something like this: Princess Ruruna and her humble servant have a problem. With the king and queen away, their fruit-selling empire is a tangle of conflicting and duplicated data, and sorting the melons from the apples and strawberries is causing real difficulties! But what can they do? Why, build a relational database of course, with the help of Tico, the magical database fairy!
The reader follows along as the main characters build a database to manage their kingdom’s sales, merchandise, and exports; learn about the entity-relationship model; perform basic database operations; and delve into more advanced topics. Once the Princess is familiar with transactions and basic SQL statements, she’s able to keep her data timely and accurate for the entire kingdom… and so are we!
Of course there are some love interests in the mix, too — a humble servant and a vain prince — as with any good manga tale. In the end of the story, the princess chooses one of them to wed (but you’ll have to read it yourself to find out who) and the fairy explains ways to keep the kingdom’s new database more efficient and secure.
Why homeschoolers love these books
If Databases aren’t your thing (or your kid’s thing), there are also Manga Guides on Statistics, Electricity, Physiology, Regression Analysis, Physics, Relativity, Calculus, Biochemistry, Linear Algebra, Molecular Biology, and Life, the Universe, and Everything. Well, maybe not “everything” but pretty close!
Also read: Colorful Comic Books Teach Science to Kids
A friend from my homeschool group has The Manga Guide to Physics. Her daughter, who is 15, read it through three times, loved it, and begged her for another. They purchased the Universe Guide and are thrilled with that one, too. Another friend has told me that her 10-year-old loved the Physiology Guide.
If you’re looking to purchase these books for your kids or classroom, I would say they are generally most appropriate for high school aged kids and older. That being said, even my 12-year old daughter got something out of The Manga Guide to Databases.
Shockingly Awesome Learning also sells three volumes of Science subjects for middle school-aged kids with a series called Survive! Inside the Human Body. That series goes through the circulatory system, the nervous system, and the digestive system and is recommended for ages 8 and up. Those have all been added to my Educents Wishlist.
All in all, this has got to be the coolest textbook series ever and I can’t wait to get my hands on more of them! My husband, who is an IT guy, is thoroughly impressed and is hoping the company will come out with more computer-y texts. We’re eager to see what they come up with next!
About the All-Star Blogger
Celena Marie is a historical fiction writer and graduate school student majoring in Elementary Education. She’s been homeschooling her four kiddos for five years and absolutely loves it! She blogs about motherhood, homeschooling, travel, and fashion on The Traveling Sisterhood.