Genius Ways to Simplify Your World

By: Aubre Andrus

Published: April 20, 2021

Publisher: National Geographic Kids


A life hack is a trick, tip, or some sort of shortcut that makes an ordinary task easier. These hacks can be time-savers or cut out a step or maybe even help you conserve resources. This book shares hacks for all kinds of situations as well as features real life-hackers who have come up with ways to save money, resources, and even lives.

I have a personal life hack that I use every single day and since it wasn’t mentioned in the book, I thought I’d share it. Every day when I make a cup of coffee, the first thing I do is add my liquid creamer to my mug. I fill the bottom of the mug and then add my coffee. This saves me several steps. There is no stirring, because the act of pouring the coffee naturally mixes the creamer into my coffee. There is no dirty spoon for me to take to the dishwasher. Plus, the coffee is ready to drink right after I pour it, no delay.

I love learning life hacks and social media seems to be full of them these days. Whether I’m watching videos on Instagram, Tik Tok, or Snapchat, it seems there is always someone sharing some sort of tip or hack. I remember the first time I saw a new way for eating a cupcake, my jaw dropped. Then someone did it across the table from us at a grad party last month, so this hack must be getting some notice. To make eating a cupcake easier, break off the bottom half of the cupcake, put it on top of the frosting, and press down. Now you have a cupcake sandwich. Much less messy!

Using binder clips to help organize or use items is another great hack. I use one to keep earphones from getting tangled. I also use one to keep my toothpaste tube rolled up. These hacks and many more are featured in this book.

One hack I had never heard of before is using your hand to determine how many more minutes of sunlight is left in the day. By extending your hand out and thumb up, place the bottom of your pinkie at the horizon and measure up to the sun with your fingers. Every finger is 15 minutes and you may need to use more than one hand to measure. So, if you want to know if you can fit in one more game of backyard cornhole before it gets dark, try the hand trick.

This small book has short bursts of facts with full-page photos to entice kids to learn on every single page. Kids will have fun all summer trying out the cake mix cookies, making a gift bag out of wrapping paper, or a tote bag out of a t-shirt. They can check out the mess-free way to eat a popsicle and how to pack for vacation and maximize all the space in their suitcase. Seriously, your kids will be teaching you things this summer! Don’t pass this one up!

Aubre Andrus is an award-winning children’s book author who has written for American Girl, Disney, Lonely Planet Kids, Scholastic, National Geographic Kids, and more. She has also ghostwritten books for some amazing young YouTube stars. She loved the opportunity to be an editor at American Girl where she developed crafts, recipes, and party ideas for girls. Beyond writing, Andrus loves to travel around the world with her most memorable trips being to India, Cambodia, and Japan. Andrus currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband and daughter. For more, check out her website, HERE.

To purchase a copy of 101 LIFE HACKS, click the photo below:

Summer Read-to-Learn

All summer I’ll be sharing books for kids of all ages on topics that will interest them or offer them a new interest to learn about. Most of the time these will be nonfiction books, but sometimes we can learn how to be better people or learn empathy from fictional stories too.

So, I hope you will stay tuned to these posts. They will always have Summer Read-to-Learn in the title and in the tags. There will be books from some of my favorite publishers like National Geographic, plus, some from independent publishers. See them all, HERE.

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Thanks to the publisher for sending a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. This review is my honest opinion. If you choose to make a purchase through the above links, I may receive a small commission without you having to pay a cent more for your purchase.

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