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How Much Is a Million?
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How Much Is a Million?

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  4,512 Ratings  ·  237 Reviews
Ever wonder just what a million of something means? How about a billion? Or a trillion? Marvelosissimo the mathematical magician can teach you! How Much is a Million? knocks complex numbers down to size in a fun, humorous way, helping children conceptualize a difficult mathematical concept.

This classic picture book is an ALA Notable Book, a Reading Rainbow Feature Selectio
Paperback, 40 pages
Published December 28th 2004 by Collins (first published 1985)
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I have actually first heard of this book through “Weston Woods” and I have enjoyed it ever since! “How Much Is a Million?” is a mathematical children's book by David M. Schwartz along with illustrations by Steven Kellogg and it is about how Marvelosissimo the Mathematical Magician shows kids how much it would take to count to a million! “How Much Is a Million?” is a truly brilliant book for children who want to learn more about mathematics!

This book basically explains about how much a million wo
Jenna Dillon
Oct 18, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: late-early
Brief summary: This book is about a explaining the magnitude of the number: one million. It goes through different scenarios that involve the number so that children can better understand that a million is huge.Genre: non-fiction, informational guide to understanding concepts
Reading Level: This book is for transitional readers because the text placement is varied and there are multiple lines on most pages. There is a mixture of regular and some harder words, which were mostly one or two syllable
May 18, 2010 rated it it was amazing
My six-year-old is insatiable about numbers right now, and this book absolutely hits the spot. It is mind-blowing, as the illustrations (Stephen Kellogg is a favorite of mine) and narrative effectively explore VERY large numbers that you sometimes hear thrown around in the news. Here you will learn that a trillion (a thousand billion) really is tremendous.

A sample...
If one million kids climbed onto one another's shoulders, they would be... taller than the tallest buildings, higher than the high
Amy Forrester
Mar 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
How many years would it take you to count to one million? One billion? One trillion? What if you wanted to find a goldfish bowl big enough to hold a million or a billion or a trillion gold fish? This humorous, but accurate book follows a group of kids and Marvelosissimo, the Mathematical Magician, to answers these questions.

The illustrations show energetic children amazed at the sights Marvelosissimo shows them. The pictures are full of movement, splashing whales, climbing children. I also love
Nov 09, 2011 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: K-3
Kindergarteners make an excellent reading audience. At tutoring every week, we primarily practice letter, number, and quantity recognition with the group of students, so when I found How Much is a Million? on the Title 1 bookshelf, it was an ideal break-out when their attentions drifted away from the white board work.

This is a good concept book, and I was already thinking of how I could write an interactive reading lesson plan around it (probably with the focus of fantasy v. reality or repetiti
Feb 17, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This book offers a fun and imaginative way to describe just how big a million, a billion and a trillion are using concrete figures of a child's height, time, a quantity of water, and pages of stars to illustrate the somewhat abstract concept of such large numbers. The information was mind-blowing and the illustrations are fun. We are looking forward to reading If You Made a Million and On Beyond a Million: An Amazing Math Journey by this author.
Have you ever wondered how much really is a million? Well if you read this book, you can stop wondering. This book talks about how a million would look in many different forms. In the form of stars and then in the form of items on the Earth. I would love to have this book in my classroom and no matter what age, I would love to talk to the children about numbers. When talking about numbers you can talk about small numbers a lot, but we never really talk about big numbers, numbers that seem intang ...more
Sarah Sammis
Apr 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Had lunch with the author today.

A really good description of orders of magnitude using things children can relate too (children standing on shoulders, the time to count, goldfish and stars in the book)
May 11, 2012 rated it liked it
I love this math book. Fun!
Caroline Daniel
Nov 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reading-4050
o Summary: This book helps children under the concept of a million. Such a difficult thing to understand is broken down for kids to understand and have fun doing so.
o Grade level: second
o Appropriate classroom use: during a math lesson for fun
o Individual students who might benefit from reading: kids that like math
o Small group use: Kids can read and then talk about what a million is
o Whole class use: Read during a math class to have a break from doing actual math work
o Related books in genre/su
Michael P Campana
Marvelosissimo the [fictional] Mathematical Magician introduces children to the [non-fiction] mathematical concept of very high numbers (one million, one billion, and one trillion) using a variety of relatable illustrations and examples (e.g. 'If you wanted to count from one to one million, it would take you about 23 days' and 'If a goldfish bowl were big enough for a million goldfish, it would be large enough to hold a whale'). The book's colorful ink and watercolor illustrations on each page h ...more
Lauralee Moose
Jul 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
A million is an awfully big number, so big it is hard to put into perspective. Schwartz is able to provide some engaging and child friendly perspective on just how big a million actually is. This is a fun (sometimes silly) engaging book to introduce children to larger numbers and give them better number sense.
Jul 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a really cute book. It uses the same examples to illustrate the amount of one million, one billion, and one trillion. It helps give children the idea of how truly big these numbers are. Kellog's illustrations are beautiful, as usual. It would be a good book for reading aloud or story time usage.
Hailey Gray
Jul 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This picture book (informational: math)was about children learning how to determine how large of a number a million is, and then a billion and a trillion. The pictures of this book really help students learn how large these numbers are by using children, stars, and fish bowls as measuring tools. This book makes math exciting for young learners because of the fun facts included for measuring such large numbers.
Mills Bryant
Mar 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rdng-350
I think this book is a must have for every classroom. It puts things into perspective as students dont normally understand the massive amount of numbers due to their lack of spatial awareness. This book puts numbers into perspective by using amounts that children know and can picture in their minds. I enjoyed reading this as it was even relatable to a 19 year old perspective. As I said, I enjoyed this book and would thoroughly use this in the classroom.
Haley Hoenke
Feb 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Apr 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
I cannot for the life of me figure out why there is a unicorn in this book. There are aliens when the kids make a tower to Saturn’s rings, and I understand that, but the unicorn just seems completely out of place. Yes, Marvelosissimo is a “mathematical magician,” but I don’t think that requires the presence of a unicorn. It’s just baffling.
Besides that, this is a pretty straight-forward and entertaining book. The cover illustration is so busy, despite the white space that serves to highlight the
Alyssa Ruehl
May 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Personal reaction
I loved this book. I wish I had it when I was in elementary school. Mrs. Siegler introduced this book to us in Math 109 Lab, and I didn't even know books like this existed! I never really understood how much a million was until I read this book, and I didn't even know I didn't understand this!

read aloud to make a curricular connection
I would read this aloud for math purposes. Many students at this age may not be able to grasp how much a million really is, so this book would he
Steve Rider
Dec 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids-books
As the US National Debt prepares to zoom passed the $20 trillion milestone in the coming months, I thought it would be a good to recommend a book that I enjoyed when I was little, How Much Is A Million? This is a great book for little kids to illustrate how big some numbers are. Frankly, it's a good book for grownups to read too.

Quick... without cheating, take a guess at how big these figures are:

How far would 1 billion US sized dollar extend if they were lined up like a road?
How long is 20
How Much is a Million is a classic math picture book which demonstrates the enormity of a million, a billion, and a trillion to children with relatable groupings. For example, children standing on each other's shoulders will be taller than a building or a mountain, while a trillion of them will pass Mars and Jupiter.

This book covers extremely large numbers that are very difficult for children to conceptualize and provides recognizable items that the children can see to understand. By discussing
Kristina Befort
Apr 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Personal Reaction: This book was introduced to me in my math lab this semester, and I thought it was a very interesting book. The author goes through the book describing how much a million really is, using descriptions and illustrations. I thought this provided a great visual representation of large numbers, which younger students sometimes struggle with quite a bit.

Use in the Classroom:
Curricular Connection: I would definitely use this in a math lesson in first or second grade. Lower elementary
Amar Pai
Jul 29, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: kids-books
I like what this book is going for, even though (IMO) it utterly fails. The problem is, you just can't conceive of a trillion. A million, maybe. A billion, doubtful but possible. A trillion, forget it. The book attempts to convey the relative scale of these numbers via how big a goldfish bowl w/ that many goldfish would be, how tall a human ladder with that many humans would be, etc. One step away from using "football fields" or "pencils stacked end to end." The metaphors are kinda tired and I d ...more
Oct 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Genre: K-3 Concept Book
Boston Globe–Horn Book Award Honor Book
Beehive Award (Utah)
ALA Booklist Editors’ Choice
ALA Notable Children’s Book
Reading Rainbow Book
Bank Street Children's Book Award

This book is an excellent children's concept book. It begins by talking about a million, then a billion, and finally a trillion. For each of these huge numbers, the author gives almost unbelievable pictures and descriptions of how big these numbers actually are. For example, "if a goldfish bowl were b
Elizabeth Kirkland
Mar 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
In this book, How Much Is A Million, the author, David M. Schwartz makes counting fun. In fact, he makes the possibility of large numbers seem fun. With the help from illustrator Steven Kellogg, he puts into perspective just how large numbers past one million really are. He conceptualizes these large numbers in a way that makes them easier to imagine. He makes them a not so scary concept for those of us who might get sacred by the thought of a number so large. Oftentimes, students (and even we ...more
May 01, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: counting, lis-565
Ever have trouble visualizing a million, or a billion, or even a trillion of something? Then this is the book for you! Marvelosissimo the Mathematical Magician brings the concept of large numbers down into objects children can visualize, such as gold fish, or stars, or even kids...a million kids? Hard to imagine, unless you have this book. Use it for preschool storytime or even the math section of a preschool or K-2 classroom.

CIP Summary:
Text and pictures try to make possible the conceptualizati
Torrie Heller
Oct 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-11-20
Type: non fiction
Genre: picture book
Awards:Boston Globe-Horn Book Award Honor Book, Bank Street Children's Book Award, ALA Notable Children's Book
Summary: This book talks all about how much a million is, how much a billion is, and how much a trillion is. How high would a stack of children reach if there was a million of them, a billion of them, or a trillion of them. How big would a fishbowl be if it held a million goldfish, a billion goldfish, and a trillion goldfish. It also talks about how l
Mar 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: math
Have you ever wondered how would a million look? A billion? A trillion? This fun book illustrates the magnitude of these numbers by illustrating them in different ways. For example, if one million kids sat on each other’s shoulders, they would reach farther up than airplanes can fly. This book also includes examples of how many stars and pages a million, billion, and trillion would fill! This book illustrates how much numbers weight and it is great for elementary school children. I would use thi ...more
I've been reading this book to my classes pretty much my entire career. I am not certain how I came upon it, but it is a good book to demonstrate exactly how large numbers are. I used to have an oversize edition of this book, but it remained in the classroom at my former school. I now check out this book from our school library each year.

It takes 23 days to count from one to one million. It takes 95 years to count from one to one billion. A fish bowl the size of a football stadium is needed to h
Joanna Marple
Feb 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
"If one million kids climbed onto one another's shoulders, they would be taller than the tallest buildings, higher than the highest mountains, and farther up than airplanes can fly." Marvelosissimo the Mathematical Magician holds an unforgettable math class. This book basically explains about how much a million would be visually, comparing it to kids standing on shoulders, or stars on a page or goldfish in a goldfish bowl. He then proceeds to use the same imagery to explain a billion and a trill ...more
Book Title: How Much is a Million
In this book, there are many ways to represent the number one million. It gives the students a visual of what one million really looks like.
Informational: This story helps children to see and understand what one million looks like. It tells you how many days it would take you to count to 1 million, how big a fish bowl would be to hold 1 million fish etc.
Ending: How much is a Million ends with representing 1 trillion in multiple ways to show children how much th
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As a child, I was filled with a sense of awe as I contemplated the universe. The huge numbers of stars and their sizes and distances never failed to amaze me. With binoculars and magnifying glass, I also focused on closer subjects like birds, flowers, frogs and bugs.

But science and math weren't my only fascinations: I also loved bicycles, baseball, boats…and ice cream. Years later, on a clear spr
More about David M. Schwartz...

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