One of the best ways to help children better understand our world, as well as interest them in possible future livelihoods, is through books. Here are some outstanding books to help widen children’s (ages 5 and up) interest in the science arena.
Mythbusters: Science Fair Book, by Samantha Margles, features Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman, who host the popular Discovery Channel series. The author has incorporated some of their most popular experiments into this kid-friendly and hands-on book. Some of these extraordinary and amazing chapters include: separating pigments from plant leaves, making your own snowflakes and polishing a penny with cola. So if your child is looking for something different and fun for their science fair, this is THE book!
How Did That Get in my Lunchbox? The Story of Food, by Chris Butterworth, and illustrated by Lucia Gaggiotti, is a wonderful picture book helping children understand healthy food choices and where this food actually comes from. The artwork, from the beginning inside pages to the end, is delightful and inviting to youngsters ages four and up.
Seed, Soil, Sun: Earth’s Recipe for Food, by Cris Peterson, and photographed by David R. Lundquist, is a wonderfully told picture book about the importance of seeds and the soil in which they need to grow. The vibrant photos, along with the extra large font, make this book accessible and important to kids. This agricultural cycle is especially important to city kids who perhaps aren’t around farms. The author is part of a farm which has been in her family for over 100 years!
X-treme X-ray, by Nick Veasey, is an amazing guide through one of our modern-day’s greatest inventions. This gloriously photographed book takes you through the history of x-rays and ends with astounding x-ray pictures of humans, objects, nature and even sports. This book is packed with engaging and enlightening information that chances are: kids won’t put it down!
The Book of What? and The Book of Who?, both published by Kingfisher, answer simple questions that kids ages five and up might have. In The Book of Who, illustrated by Del Frost, there are answers to include who were the first people in space and who wrote in secret code. In The Book of What?, illustrated by Ray Bryant, there are answers to include what blood is for and what makes the earth shake. Both books have artwork that will appeal to kids.
Oscar and the Bird: A Book About Electricity, by Geoff Waring, is a picture book with Oscar the kitten discovering that he could turn on the windshield wipers on a tractor. So now he wants to know all about electricity from Bird. There is much to learn about this form of energy and the book also includes safety elements as well.
Oscar and the Snail: A Book About Things We Use, also by Geoff Waring, is another easy to understand picture book about items easily identified and their properties. When Oscar the cat meets up with Snail, it’s Snail who explains why a feather from a nest they have seen floats and a stone sinks. There are many more simple concepts taught here. Both books are from the “Start with Science Book” series.
Maps and Mapping, by Deborah Chancellor, teaches the basics to the purpose and use of maps. The book’s lay-out has large text and colorful pictures that will surely attract kids and teach and possibly lure them into map-making.
Senses, by Jinny Johnson, is an informative picture book explaining our five senses in an easy to understand format. There is information about hearing and balance as well as an outstanding illustration of the parts of taste on the tongue. Included in this brightly illustrated book are even the super senses of different animals. This book, as well as “Maps and Mapping”, are part of the excellent “Discover Science” series.
Oil Spill Disaster, published by Scholastic, was published soon after this catastrophe and gives a quick account of the facts that led up to the problem. It addresses the consistency, the importance of oil and the clean-up, as well as how to stop it from happening again in the future. This book is an easy and quick read to understand the problems that resulted from the tragedy.