STEM Friday

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Books


The Hungriest Mouth in the Sea

hungriestmouthinsea

The Hungriest Mouth in the Sea
by Peter Walters (Author/Illustrator)

Reading & Writing #kidlit #Review Haiku:
Who is hungrier
than all the rest? See a food
chain in the south sea.

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

Site Meter Copyright © 2016 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.

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Never Insult a Killer Zucchini

Never insult killer zukeNever Insult a Killer Zucchini
by Elana Azose & Brandon Amancio; illus. by David Clark
32 pages; ages 7-10
Charlesbridge, 2016

Topics: alphabet, science experiments, humor

It’s time for the science fair and Mr. Farnsworth is the judge. When the killer zucchini hears Mr. Farnsworth profess his love for zucchinis, it falls in love. Maybe Mr. Farnsworth could be a friend? But when Mr. Farnsworth says, “He looks like a yummy afternoon snack,” all bets are off. The killer zucchini is determined to squash Mr. Farnsworth and stay off the menu. And it uses the science fair experiments to exact revenge until chaos breaks out and only Mr. Farnsworth can save them all.

I like that the story is told through dialog balloons and comic-book type illustrations. I also like that the outrageous science fair experiments are introduced in alphabetical order. I love the whimsy of the illustrations, too.

But what I really like is the back matter. “Think the projects in this book are just mad science?” ask the authors. Nope; they all come from the real world – even the “eraser beam” and “invisibility suit”. Each experiment is explained in the back, in language that we comic-book readers can understand.

Head over to Archimedes Notebook for some hands-on science experiments to try.

STEM Friday

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

Site Meter Copyright © 2016 Sue Heavenrich All Rights Reserved.


The Big Book of Animals of the World (board book)

animalsoftheworld

The Big Book of Animals of the World (board book)
by Ole Könnecke (Author/Illustrator)

Reading & Writing #kidlit #Review Haiku:
From the savannah
to the Arctic — animals
all around the world!

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

Site Meter Copyright © 2016 Anastasia Suen All Rights Reserved.


To the Stars!

to the starsTo the Stars! The First American Woman to Walk in Space
by Carmella Van Vleet & Dr. Kathy Sullivan; illus. by Nicole Wong
40 pages; ages 5-8
Charlesbridge, 2016

Theme: science, space, exploration, women

“Kathy Sullivan loved to explore.”

When her father brings home blueprints of airplanes, she studies their lines and curves. She daydreamed about flying, and when people asked, she told them that when she grew up she wanted to see the whole world. And she did – becoming the first woman to walk in space.

What I like about this book: It portrays a little girl who wants to be an adventurer and see the world at a time when girls were expected to grow up to be mothers or teachers or nurses. I like the way that pairs of spreads alternate, showing Kathy as a girl and in the next spread as a grown woman facing the same questions and problems. For example: a wonderful illustration of her as a teenager in the cockpit, learning to pilot a plane. “There were so many dials and buttons and numbers.” The next spread shows Kathy as an astronaut studying another (much larger) instrument panel.

There is great back matter including a note from Kathy, additional biographical material, and “American Women Firsts in NASA History”.

Head over to Archimedes Notebook for some beyond-the-book activities.

STEM Friday

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

Site Meter Copyright © 2016 Sue Heavenrich All Rights Reserved.


Edible Science

edible scienceEdible Science: Experiments You Can Eat
by Jodi Wheeler-Toppen and Carol Tennant
80 pages; ages 8-12
National Geographic Children’s Books, 2015

Our kitchen has been a science lab ever since I started cooking. Think about it: every time you mix something up, bake it, stir-fry or whatever… you’re doing a science experiment. You’re mixing up chemicals and creating reactions.

This book is chock-full of experiments to try, and “science scoop” text-boxes that explain why things happen or don’t happen. Take the idea of chocolate-flavored gum. Ever tried eating a candy bar when you’re chewing gum? Gum, it turns out, is made of molecules that don’t mix well with water. That’s why you can chew it all day and it won’t dissolve. BUT, when you add chocolate, those chocolate molecules act as an emulsifier. They connect oil and water or, in this case, gum and water. When that happens, the gum starts breaking apart.

There are lots more things to try: making crystals, exploding seeds (popcorn), baking cookie pH indicators, making gels, and making slime. Cakes and cookies rise because of gas bubbles, so changing ingredients might make your cakes turn out flat. There’s a recipe for making yogurt – that means keeping a bacteria culture alive – and one for making “bug” brownies with toasted meal worms. In all, there are about 40 hands-on science experiments – and to clean up, all you do is eat them.

STEM Friday

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

Site Meter Copyright © 2016 Sue Heavenrich All Rights Reserved.