Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Smithsonian Maker Lab

Challoner, Jack (Author)
DK 2016. 160 pages
First published: 2016
ISBN: 9781465451354 (hardcover)
Original language: English
Dewey: 507.8
Book type: Non-Fiction

Text Elements:

layout, structures and features

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL Intensive & Enriched
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

This hands-on science book presents 28 spectacular experiments using everyday materials to make fascinating things happen around the house or in the backyard. Learn how to create invisible ink with lemon, how to create a balloon-powered rocket car, or how to grow a jungle in a bottle.

Ordered in four sections: Food for Thought, Around the Home, Water World and The Great Outdoors, each experiment starts with a title and introductory paragraph, and goes on to give step-by-step instructions on how to complete the project. Clearly and carefully laid out, with photographs that make for an easy-to-follow and engaging read, a visual picture list of “What you need” is included with each investigation. Colourful layouts, strong font choices, time guides and difficulty metres add to the fun.

Writing is matter-of-fact and includes interesting science facts, both in the “recipes” and in the “How it Works” sections: “Pour a generous amount of food colouring into the large mixing bowl. Then add the shampoo. Notice how slowly the shampoo flows – the technical term for this gloopy behaviour is ‘viscosity’.” In the deeper exploration of the science on how to make sticky slime, we learn: “A molecule is the smallest part of a compound. It’s the starch molecules reacting with the water that are responsible for the slime’s viscosity.”

A fantastic mix of enjoyment and information that will attract a range of different interests. A glossary and an index can be found at the back.

  •  

    On a picture walk, explore and discuss what you see. Identify the structures and features such as content, photos, diagram and labels. Discuss how these non-fiction features help readers locate information.

  •  Try out the experiments in pairs or small groups. Use a camera to film your experiment. Identify the various steps of the scientific method throughout the experiment. Comment as you go or add the comments later.
  •  

    Organize a class science fair using experiments from the book. Write up an explanation of how the science works and prepare a presentation for visitors. Write an invitation letter for other classes and parents. Create posters to advertise around the school.

  •  

    On a picture walk, explore and discuss what you see. Identify features such as content, photos, diagrams and labels. Discuss what science concept the activity is related to. Do you know any words that will help you talk like a scientist? 

  •  

    Try out the experiments in pairs or small groups. Use a camera to film your experiment. Identify the steps of the scientific method as you go, adding comments immediately or later.

  •  

    Organize a science fair with experiments from the book. Practise explaining how the science works. Prepare an invitation letter for other classes and parents. Create some advertisement posters to put around the school.

  •  

    With a partner, select (five) experiments from the table of contents and predict what each experiment involves. Predict the materials required, the steps to follow and what the final product should look like.

  •  

    Individually or with a partner, attempt one of the experiments. Keep a log of important events, focusing particularly on difficult steps, successes and failures. Do you agree with the designated degree of difficulty? Does your finished product reflect the one in the book?

  •  

    Using a similar format (title, time required, degree of difficulty, images, “How It Works” section, etc.), devise a fun experiment of your own for others to attempt. Get ideas from the Internet or other sources.

  • To adopt effective work methods
  • To solve problems
  • To use information
  • Environmental Awareness and Consumer Rights and Responsibilities
  • Personal and Career Planning
  • Science and Technology