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STEM Tuesday
  • STEM Tuesday --Planes, Trains, Automobiles, and More! -- Writing Crafts & Resources
    STEM Tuesday –Planes, Trains, Automobiles, and More! — Writing Crafts & Resources
    October 15, 2019 by
      Getting into Character Planes, trains, automobiles, and more – this month’s look at transportation books might seem a bit impersonal, characterless, emotionless. When I looked closer, though, I found all kinds of characters. Let’s spend a few minutes examining how authors infuse character in these books about more technical topics. Biography is an obvious approach, one taken in Elon Musk: And the Quest for a Fantastic Future. Following one individual’s life, author Ashley Vance shows us the development of his passion, the technical challenges he conquered, as well as the human challenges he dealt with. The results are an in-depth look at the skills needed to develop advanced transportation systems such as spaceships and electric cars. When tackling a topic such as the Titanic, which incorporate so much human tragedy, utilizing character is a natural fit. In Titanic: Voices from the Disaster, author Deborah Hopkinson interweaves individual’s stories to convey the magnitude of this event. But even in a...
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  • Taking Stock of Writerly Weaknesses and How to Avoid Overwhelm
    Taking Stock of Writerly Weaknesses and How to Avoid Overwhelm
    October 9, 2019 by
    One of my graduate students once told me that as she was reading a craft book on writing, she suddenly felt that everything she read about was a technique that she had failed to apply to her work-in-progress. I laughed with recognition. It’s like a medical student who thinks she has every disease in her textbook. This can feel a bit dire, even scary, as well as a little overwhelming. However, just like a solid protagonist, you must comfort your flaws in order to achieve growth. Today, my musings will be posting on Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year for Jews. And I will sit in synagogue and take stock of my behaviors, actions, and habits. This is a designated period of forgiveness as well as renewal. As a writer, I try to also take stock of my areas of weaknesses and consider practices I might like to...
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  • STEM Tuesday --Planes, Trains, Automobiles, and More! -- In the Classroom
    STEM Tuesday –Planes, Trains, Automobiles, and More! — In the Classroom
    October 8, 2019 by
      This month’s theme looks at transportation–something students might think as ordinary. But as the books we’re highlighting show, plaines, trains, and automobiles have rich histories and lots of science going on.  They’re perfect starting points for different science activities and discussions in the classroom. Here are a few to try.   Save the Crash-test Dummies by Jen Swanson, illustrated by Tamika Grooms Explore how autos are made even safer by using crash-test dummies for design. An entertaining look at the history of car production, as well as the science and engineering behind these machines we can’t seem to live without.  Make a timeline of the evolution of the car bumper. Research the science behind how car bumpers absorb energy from a crash. Have students design the ultimate car bumper, listing what it can do during a crash and labeling its parts on a drawing. Have students imagine a crash-test...
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  • STEM Tuesday --Planes, Trains, Automobiles, and More! -- Book List
    STEM Tuesday –Planes, Trains, Automobiles, and More! — Book List
    October 1, 2019 by
        Let’s get moving this month with a selection of STEM titles that delve into locomotion — planes, trains, automobiles and other modes of transportation that require science to create.   Save the Crash-test Dummies by Jen Swanson, illustrated by Tamika Grooms Explore how autos are made even safer by using crash-test dummies for design. An entertaining look at the history of car production, as well as the science and engineering behind these machines we can’t seem to live without.     Who Built That? series by Didier Cornille – Books include Bridges: An Introduction to Bridges and Their Designs; Skyscrapers: An Introduction to Skyscrapers and Their Architects; and Modern Houses: An Introduction to Modern Houses and Their Architects As important autos are to us, we couldn’t go far without bridge, tall city skyscrapers, and our own homes. A behind-the-scenes peek into how these marvels of engineering were constructed...
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Carolyn DeCristofano

Website: carolyndecristofano.com

Biography

Carolyn Cinami DeCristofano has been paid to stay overnight at a science center and has enjoyed her share of after-hours staff parties at museums, where she and her husband once won a prize for a costume modelled after the Boston Museum of Science’s Van der Graaf generator exhibit. Carolyn’s work is all about creating vivid science and engineering learning experiences—interactive exhibits, innovative teacher professional development programs, national curricula, and fresh, accessible, and sometimes quirky science and STEM books for kids. She splits her career between STEM educational consulting and writing kids’ STEM and science books.