I've always been fascinated by origami, but I never really progressed beyond folding hats and simple boats (no, I still can't fold a paper airplane). The kids surpassed my origami repertoire when they turned 6; The Pea's first-grad teacher incorporated origami into her curriculum, and Jammy has the same teacher this year, and of course 3Po wanted in on the fun and he learned to fold origami too.
I think doing origami projects in class is an absolutely wonderful idea; the kids have fun while they learn important concepts in math, spacial relationships, improve their fine motor skills, learn to follow complex directions, and learn to be patient and thorough. And they end up with a beautiful object that they can make again and again. It's not surprising that after being in Mrs. M's class, they want to expand their origami repertoire, which is why I welcomed the offer to review World's Best Origami.
About World’s Best Origami:
Remember folding paper into a hand-held fortune teller, paper airplane or secret note square? Whether a fortune teller novice or a seasoned paper-folding expert, the new book World’s Best Origami (ISBN: 9781615640539, Alpha Books, November 2010, $19.95) challenges readers with more than 100 of the most unique and best-loved origami patterns ever created.
Professional origami artist, Nick Robinson, guides readers through the process of folding paper. Projects are rated from beginner to advanced and include everything from the traditional swan and poppy box to truly amazing pieces such as a geodetic tower and a jet plane! Each diagram is clearly displayed with easy-to-understand folding instructions for a perfect outcome every time.
What a great book this is! It contains so many unique and interesting models, from birds to animals to faces to flowers to little containers. Each model is rated from 1 to 5 in difficulty, so you know which ones are best for you to tackle -- and there's a good balance, so everyone from beginner level to expert will find a project they can complete. The book also contains very clear step-by-step instructions, which are printed in black and white so you can clearly see what needs to be folded, which side needs to be flipped or folded, etc.. It has an introduction to all of the folds that are used throughout the book (and the symbols they'll be using), so you can refer to them whenever you need to (kind of like an origami cheat sheet). My kids are delighted with all the new models in the book, and they're looking forward to completing them all!
My own aspirations aren't quite so lofty; I'm just happy I was actually able to fold this cute little swan:
Although I agree that the black-and-white illustrations are easier to follow, it would have been nice if there were a section containing color photos of some of the models in the book.
The Bottom Line
There's something for everyone to try inside World's Best Origami. This book is going to give you and your family lots of hours of folding fun!
Disclosure: I received a review copy of the book, but was not paid to review the product or give my opinions. Information is provided by the publisher and is clearly indicated as such. The views and opinions expressed here are my own.