SAMPLER

HOW ARE THE BOOKS SELECTED?

1. Well written stories.

2. Valid science and nature content relevant to the story.

3. Characters in the story exhibit (especially in the ‘mystery’ codes and puzzles theme) behaviors including curiosity, questioning, investigation, analysis, critical thinking and problem solving.

4. Stories with positive human values.

WHAT IS INCLUDED?

• 100+ Children's, teens' and young adult fiction and nonfiction story books and novels that have nature and science themes within their stories;

• 10 Graphic Novels with integrated science themes;

• 10 Poetry Books with integrated science themes and suitable for young people;

• 10 Professional Play Scripts – adult plays with integrated science themes and suitable for reading by young adults.

• 10 Subscription Magazines with science information and stories for children.

EXAMPLE of a Listing (Descriptions are separate)

Intermediate Readers [2]

Ages 8-12, grades 3-6; stories with more involved subject matter requiring good reading skills and some maturity.   (42 Titles)

_____Ada Lovelace, Poet of Science: The First Computer Programmer by Diane Stanley — Biographical [2]

_____Adam's Atomic Adventures by Alice Baxter — Fiction [2]

_____Beetle Boy by M G Leonard —Fiction [2]

_____Blue John's Cavern: Time Travel Rocks! by Tracy Barnhart — Adventure fiction [2]

_____Boy Who Harnessed The Wind, The: Young Readers' Edition by William Kamkwamba — True story [2]

_____Brilliant Fall of Gianna Z., The by Kate Messner — Fiction [2]

Etcetera ...

EXAMPLE of the descriptions (For Intermediate Readers) [2]

Ada Lovelace, Poet of Science: The First Computer Programmer by Diane Stanley (2016) Biographical [2]

Age Range 9-11 years / Grade Level 3-5  / 810L / Theme: Biography, Early computer programming

            This is a lively, illustrated biography of Ada Lovelace, who is known as the first computer programmer. Ada was born two hundred years ago to the famous poet, Lord Byron, and his mathematical wife, Annabella. Like her mother, she had a passion for science, math, and machines. With her meticulous, step-by-step detail of how to code numbers she wrote the first computer program in partnership with mathematician Charles Babbage who invented the first mechanical computer. The text briefly touches upon such topics as the Industrial Revolution.

NOTES: ________________________________________________________________________________________   

Adam's Atomic Adventures by Alice Baxter (2007) Fiction [2]

Age Range 8-11 / Grade Level 3-6 / Theme: Chemistry

            Mrs. Gold, Adam's rather peculiar science teacher, makes him stay behind after class to share with him a startling secret: she's much more than a science teacher-Mrs. Gold is a powerful alchemist who's counting on Adam's help to save the world! Mrs. Gold has chosen Adam, one of her best students, for a critical task. She plans to shrink Adam down to the microscopic size of a single atom and send him to the Periodic School for the Elements to search for Ollie, a missing atom of oxygen.  Alice L. Baxter taught chemistry for more than thirty years

NOTES: _______________________________________________________________________________________________

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Caveat

This little book is about encouraging reading to inspire interest, enjoyment and familiarity with science and nature but I would be remiss if I did not also strongly encourage intimate, personal involvement with our natural surroundings.

I recently read what Dave Goulson (Professor of Biological Sciences at Sussex University UK [1] ) has to say about the large majority of children who grow out of their fascination with nature by about the age of eight and no longer see the natural world as in any way personally relevant to them.

Goulson suggests that the change comes about when children get too few opportunities in our modern, urbanized world to regularly interact with nature. He notes that they cannot learn to love something they do not know.  For example, a staggering 80% of U.S and 82% of UK populations now live in urban areas. Many children in such circumstances in the U.S. and in Britain today do not explore and investigate nature beyond their homes at the wildlife edges of town as I and other children of my era did. A child who has never been lucky enough to wander through a wildflower meadow in late spring to smell the flowers, hear the birds and insect songs and watch butterflies flit amongst the grass is unlikely to care much if such natural areas disappear. 

Even if the casual freedom of past times can no longer exist it is still possible for individuals, families and school classes to experience the natural world on a regular basis if they wish. Such places still exist and are available to the public. Additionally, many families live in locations where their gardens can offer wonderful opportunities for grubbing around in the soils to grow vegetables, fruits and flowers or discover amazing varieties of plant and animal wildlife.

The possibilities for learning to love nature do exist but in our current times they need to be more regularly, actively and purposefully sought out.

So, my heartfelt admonition, dear reader, is for you to engage both in reading about the natural world and in interacting with the real thing as much as possible.

       [1] Goulson, Dave, (2017). Bee Quest. London SW1V 2SA: Jonathan Cape, Penguin Random House

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