STEM Friday

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Books


Little Scientists Visit STEM Friday!

Smith Airplanes   Smith Coral Reefs   Smith Sharks   Smith Space

Did you know that some sharks go through as many as 30,000 teeth in their lifetimes? Or that at any given minute, about 7,000 airplanes are flying over the United States?

Little readers will learn all sorts of fun facts like these in Capstone’s new Little Scientists series, published in collaboration with the Smithsonian. For grades PreK-2, Little Scientists investigates topics kids love best – from airplanes and coral reefs to sharks and space.

9781476502472_02   9781476502472_03

Visually dramatic and packed with graphic elements, such as charts, diagrams, maps, sidebars, and labels, the books keep all kinds of different kinds of learners engaged and moving through the text. Each of the books end with “Critical Thinking Using the Common Core” questions to encourage further thought and discussion.

Vetted by world-renowned scientists, Little Scientists has Smithsonian’s seal of approval and we hope readers too!

STEM Friday

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

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Muskrat Will Be Swimming

Muskrat Will Be Swimming, by Cheryl Savageau, illustrated by Robert Hynes, is one of those classic old school picture books from the 1990’s. It has more words per page than most picture books have per book these days. But I found this story to be a perfect blend of fiction, Native American hmuskrateritage, and natural science.

A muskrat is similar to a beaver, in that it is a water mammal that lives in marsh and lake habitats. While there is extensive information on muskrats at the back of the book, and there are internet links to information for teachers wishing to find out how to teach about this story, the basis of the book is not science about muskrats. Rather it is about a girl who is in love with her home near a lake where nature is still wild and muskrats are busily leading their lives. Yet, even as she appreciates the wilderness surrounding her home, she struggles with her experiences at school, where the other kids make fun of her and what they think of as a gross place to live.

With the help of her Grandpa and a Native American legend, the girl learns to find confidence in her place in the natural world.

The highlight of the book for me is the beautifully, and scientifically accurate, depictions of the lake environment and creatures. Robert Hynes’ artwork is meticulous and brings depth and life to this story. I’m a sucker for nature art, and this book is a perfect one to pull me in.

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

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Tarantulas Infest STEM Friday

Halloween is approaching fast, and children often develop an interest in creepy-crawlers at that time. Educators might want to take advantage of this interest and pull out some books about spiders.

Today for STEM Friday we’re featuring the beginning reader Tarantulas (Pebble Plus) by Jeni Wittrock.


The sight of a tarantula is likely to evoke strong reaction in people, because either they are fascinated by these large spiders or extremely fearful. No matter what the reaction, this book will help young readers learn more about the anatomy, life cycle and behaviors of tarantulas. With carefully controlled vocabulary and short sentences, the child can gain confidence reading while at the same time increasing their understanding of the natural world.

For much more information about tarantulas and related hands-on activities, visit Growing With Science. (Note:  links go to the featured blog post)

Sue at Archimedes Notebook has a If You Want to See a Grass Spider, with great suggestions for observing a spider in nature.


She also has an earlier review of Up, Up and Away by Ginger Wadsworth and Patricia J. Wynne (Illustrator).


At NC Teacher Stuff, Jeff recently featured A Spider’s Life, written by Ellen Lawrence.


Amanda at Tamarack Writes has shared a book about probably the most famous fictional spider ever, Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White.

For a list of more spider-related books separated by reading category, see Science Books for Kids.


Are you sharing a review of a STEM book on your blog? Feel free to leave a link in the comments.

STEM Friday

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

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Picture This! Human Body

Picture This! Human Body
by Margaret Hynes (Author)

Booktalk: This quick, clean, no-nonsense reference book is all about the human body. Designed for the sophisticated eye of today’s middle schoolers, fascinating facts and important anatomical information alike are presented both visually and in words.

It may seem like we do nothing when we sleep; however, the brain is actually very active at this time. Scientists use an EEG machine to detect and display brain waves–the patterns of electrical activity produced by the brain cells.

STEM Friday

It’s STEM Friday! (STEM is Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

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