Monday, February 15, 2016

Science Stunts: Fun Feats of Physics

Science Stunts: Fun Feats of Physics
written by Jordan D. Brown; illustrated by Anthony Owsley
2016 (Charlesbridge)
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher

I want you to get hooked on physics and have a great time as you create your own marshmallow catapult, set off a chain reaction with wooden sticks, and make your own electromagnet.

In the court of public opinion, physics is considered dull and to be endured rather than enjoyed. Contrary to popular belief, physics is pretty cool. I submit Science Stunts as my evidence. Physicist Dr. Dazz hosts this fun physics feast. With the help of Galileo, Newton, and Einstein (that would be a pretty good law firm), the good doctor presents 25 experiments that will stir the imagination of future scientists. Each experiment features a task to be completed by the reader, an explanation of the science by one of the three physicists mentioned above, and additional information from the world of science. Marshmallow Flinger is an experiment using craft sticks, rubber bands, a plastic spoon, and mini marshmallows. Who wouldn't want to participate in a task that involves throwing marshmallows?
Craft sticks are attached in a crisscross manner by rubber bands and the spoon is attached. Now it's time to launch the marshmallows. Sir Isaac Newton uses this experiment to explain the three laws of motion. Other chapters explore gravity, heat and cold, magnets, sound, light, and electricity.

The obvious first thought is to use this in a science class, but think about language arts and math too. Procedural text is a genre that often shows up on standardized tests so using Science Stunts to teach reading these texts would be beneficial. Point of view lessons can also be launched with this book. There are a ton of possibilities for teaching measurement skills as well. Science Stunts is a humorous book that will enliven classes across the curriculum.

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