STEM Tuesday

STEM Tuesday– The Human Body — In the Classroom

STEM Tuesday CoSTEM Costume Contest

 

This month we’re peeling back the layers to take a look inside the human body! In the body, trillions of unique cells work together to form the tissues, organs, and body systems that allow you to run and jump, laugh and cry, and feel pain and joy.

The books we’re highlighting this month dive into how the body works to sustain life. They are a great starting point for different sciences activities and discussions in the classroom. Here are a few to try:

 

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org Science Comic: The Brain – The Ultimate Thinking Machine by Tory Woollcott and Alex Graudins

Another title in this popular graphic novel series that focuses on science topics. Readers will explore the ultimate thinking machine – our own brain! How our brains evolved, how our brain controls our senses, how we remember things, and more.

  • Discuss why it is important to know how your brain works. What modern technologies do scientists use to study the brain? How did scientists study the brain before modern technology? How did this limit their knowledge?
  • Have students build a model neuron. Have students study a picture of the neuron and experiment with different ways and materials to create the neuron model. Use several neurons to model a neural network.

 

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org Human Cloning by Kristi Lew 

This title for older readers explores the use of cloning and the depiction of human cloning in science fiction.

  • Have students debate the pros and cons of human cloning. Assign groups of students to each side of the issue and have them research points that support their position.
  • Discuss the concerns over the way genetic advances and technology are being used now and in the future. When does human intervention into the basic genetic code of life go too far?

 

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org Random Body Parts: Gross Anatomy Riddles in Verse by Leslie Bulion and Mike Lowery

With puzzles and fun verse, Leslie Bulion introduces human anatomy to middle-grade readers.

  • Have students choose a body part to research. With the information they learn, students can then create their own human body poetry and puzzles.
  • Have students swap the puzzles they created with classmates to see if they can solve each other’s riddles with the clues provided.

 

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org Human Movement: How the Body Walks, Runs, Jumps, and Kicks by Carla Mooney and Samuel Carbaugh

This book delves into how our bodies work when we play sports, dance, and walk. There are plenty of STEM projects, informative sidebars, and fun facts throughout the chapters.

  • Have students pick a type of movement – running, jumping, dancing, etc. Then have them prepare a flow chart that shows how the body creates this movement. What body systems are involved? How does the body know what to do? What actions and reactions occur to create the movement? What forces are involved?
  • What happens when an injury occurs to the body? How does this affect movement? Have students research a common injury such as a broken bone, sprained ankle, pulled muscle, torn ACL, etc. Then have them prepare a presentation on the injury’s affect on the body and movement.
  • Try one of the many STEM activities in the book!

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Carla Mooney loves to explore the world around us and discover the details about how it works. An award-winning author of numerous nonfiction science books for kids and teens, she hopes to spark a healthy curiosity and love of science in today’s young people. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband, three kids, and dog. When not writing, she can often be spotted at a hockey rink for one of her kids’ games. Find her at http://www.carlamooney.com, on Facebook @carlamooneyauthor, or on Twitter @carlawrites.

STEM Tuesday– The Human Body — Book List

STEM Tuesday CoSTEM Costume Contest

Heart and Soul 

As Valentine’s Day approaches, let’s explore what makes our hearts go pitter-patter with these books featuring various aspects of human anatomy. 

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Superbugs Strike Back: When Antibiotics Fail by Connie Goldsmith 

For a long time we thought we had infectious diseases licked. But now we’re not so sure. What happens when bacteria become resistant to antibiotics? Goldsmith explores the science of superbugs in a accessible style that will make readers take notice.

 

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Will Puberty Last My Whole Life? REAL Answers to REAL Questions From Preteens About Body Changes, Sex, and Other Growing-Up Stuff by Julie Metzger, RN, Robert Lehman, and Lia Cerizo

Nurse Julie Metzger answers the questions many preteen boys and girls have about their bodies.

 

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Guy Stuff The Body Book for Boys by Cara Natterson and Micah Player

Advice, tips, and facts from a pediatrician fill this book specifically for boys. 

 

 

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Guts by Raina Telgemeier 

Here is another heartfelt graphic novel-memoir from Raina Telgemeier. Dealing with a sensitive stomach, anxiety, and panic attacks, the author shares many mental and physical health issues middle-grade students face. 

 

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Human Body Theater: A Nonfiction Revue  by Maris Wicks

This nonfiction, graphic novel presents a human anatomy lesson in a fun, humor-filled way. 

 

 

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Science Comic: The Brain – The Ultimate Thinking Machine by Tory Woollcott and Alex Graudins

Another in this popular graphic novel series that focuses on science topics. Readers will explore the ultimate thinking machine – our own brain! How our brains evolved, how our brain controls our senses, how we remember things, and more.

 

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org

Human Cloning by Kristi Lew 

This title for older readers explores the use of cloning and the depiction of human cloning in science fiction. 

 

 

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org

Future Humans: Hows-Whys-Tech-Medicine-Human Enhancement-Genetics-Wrongs-Rights-Playing God- Who Wants to Live Forever? – Science vs Morality by Tom Jackson 

What does it mean to be human? Perhaps the future will force us to rethink our answer. Readers will explore artificial intelligence and deep questions on immortality and human potential. 

 

Body 2.0 coverBody 2.0: The Engineering Revolution in Medicine by Sara Latta

Discover the science of biomedical engineering and cutting edge research. This book for teens will inspire future medical professionals. 

 

 

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Illumanatomy by Carnovsy, written by Kate Davies

This book gives readers a chance to use three different lenses to view human anatomy. Readers can use the red lens to reveal the human skeleton, the green to look at muscles, and the blue to examine organs with x-rays. A unique way to understand what’s under our skin!

 

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Florence Nightingale: The Courageous Life of the Legendary Nurse by Catherine Reef

It’s hard to discuss the human body without examining the life of the legendary nurse, Florence Nightingale. Reef’s biography will inspire future nurses and doctors. 

 

 

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Human Movement: How the Body Walks, Runs, Jumps, and Kicks by Carla Mooney and Samuel Carbaugh

Mooney’s book delves into how our bodies work when we play sports, dance, and walk. This is a great addition to science and sports collections. 

 

Support Independent Bookstores - Visit IndieBound.org

Random Body Parts: Gross Anatomy Riddles in Verse by Leslie Bulion and Mike Lowery

With puzzles and fun verse, Leslie Bulion introduces human anatomy to middle-grade readers. Try this one during poetry month!

 

 


STEM Tuesday book lists prepared by

Nancy Castaldo has written books about our planet for over 20 years including, THE STORY OF SEEDS, which earned the Green Earth Book Award, Junior Library Guild Selection, and other honors. Nancy’s research has taken her all over the world from the Galapagos to Russia.  She strives to inform, inspire, and empower her readers. Nancy also serves as the Regional Advisor of the Eastern NY SCBWI region. Her 2018 multi-starred title is BACK FROM THE BRINK: Saving Animals from Extinction. Visit her at www.nancycastaldo.com. 

Patricia Newman writes middle-grade nonfiction that empowers young readers to act on behalf of the environment and their communities. The Sibert Honor author of Sea Otter Heroes, Newman has also received an NSTA Outstanding Science Trade Book Award for Eavesdropping on Elephants, and a Green Earth Book Award for Plastic, Ahoy! Her books have received starred reviews, been honored as Junior Library Guild Selections, and included on Bank Street College’s Best Books lists. During author visits, she demonstrates how young readers can use writing to be the voice of change. Visit her at www.patriciamnewman.com.

 

STEM Tuesday–Dinosaurs/Paleontology– Interview with Author Karen Bush Gibson

Welcome to STEM Tuesday: Author Interview & Book Giveaway, a repeating feature for the fourth Tuesday of every month. Go Science-Tech-Engineering-Math!

Today we’re interviewing Karen Bush Gibson. She’s the author of Gutsy Girls Go For Science: Paleontologists. The book features the lives of five women paleontologists—Mary Anning, Mignon Talbot, Tilly Edinger, Zofia Kielan-Jaworowska, and Mary Leakey—who overcame obstacles to make breakthrough discoveries about ancient life.

Mary Kay Carson: What’s the book about—and why did you chose to write it?

Karen Bush Gibson: Imagine how cool it must be to discover something no one has seen for over 145 million years? Even more exciting is if your discovery is a puzzle piece in the history of living things. Gutsy Girls Go for Science: Paleontologists highlights some of the women who have accomplished this. I’ve always been fascinated by women who achieve great things, particularly in male-dominated fields. One of those fields is paleontology, in which many women have been discriminated against. Although females make up nearly half of the student members in professional paleontology organizations, less than 25% become professional members.

MKC: Could you share an especially interesting tidbit from your research? 

Karen: I’m ashamed to say that except for Mary Leakey, I knew little of the other women featured before I started research. Now, as is often the case, I see references to these women everywhere. Particularly Mary Anning, who began making great discoveries when she was just 12 years old. Due to her circumstances, she had to educate herself, but became the best fossil finder of the early nineteenth century when the science of paleontology was just starting. She made the first discoveries of ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs. Anning instinctively knew where to find fossils and to what prehistoric family and groups they belonged to. Great male paleontologist of the day came to see Anning, and it’s said that many of them struggled to keep up with her on the cliffs of Lyme Regis.

MKC: Did your investigations into the lives of these five accomplished women reveal any commonalities? 

Karen: All five women were driven by curiosity and the need to know more. Two succeeded despite being caught up in the events of World War II. Another lived in poverty. All experienced societal restrictions in education or their profession at some point. Yet none of them allowed these hardships to dissuade them from their chosen path. They never gave up.

MKC: Why do you choose to specifically write STEM books?

Karen Bush Gibson loves exploring history and the world through writing. She is particularly fascinated by interesting women, so she’s bouncing off the wall about the 100th anniversary of the women’s vote this year. When not writing about awesome women or travel, Gibson works as an instructional-curriculum designer. • kbgibson.net  • www.facebook.com/Books4CuriousKids  • @Gibson4writing

Karen: I do not have a STEM background, but since writing a book on female aviators in 2013, I have heard repeatedly about females being discouraged or at least not encouraged in science and math in the classroom. When I was a child, I was good at math. I found sciences like genetics and archaeology fascinating. But I don’t recall anyone encouraging me. My father was an engineer, but it never occurred to me to explore engineering. However, as a writer of STEM books, I get to explore my own curiosity and immerse myself in subjects like aeronautics, marine biology, meteorology, cell science, programming, and paleontology. And one of my children is studying to be an astrophysicist, so I get to pick his brain a lot.

MKC: Who did you write this book for?

Karen: I believe nonfiction books—including STEM books about female paleontologists—should be every bit as interesting as fiction. I always tried to start a chapter with a paleontologist doing or discovering something exciting. And I wanted the reader to feel as if he or she were there. Yes, Gutsy Girls Go for Science includes STEM, but it’s also about girls with dreams. And that’s who I’m writing for, young people with dreams and interests in STEM. I hope books like this help young people believe they can be anything they want to be, especially a paleontologist.

Win a FREE copy of Gutsy Girls Go For Science: Paleontologists

Enter the giveaway by leaving a comment below. The randomly-chosen winner will be contacted via email and asked to provide a mailing address (within the U.S. only) to receive the book.

Good luck!

Your host is Mary Kay Carson, author of The Tornado Scientist, Alexander Graham Bell for Kids, Mission to Pluto, Weird Animals, and other nonfiction books for kids. @marykaycarson