Friday, March 10, 2017
Charlotte the Scientist is Squished
by Camille Andros; illus by Brianne Farley
40 pages; ages 4-7
Clarion Books, 2017
themes: investigation, science
Charlotte was a serious scientist.
She's got a lab coat, protective glasses, a magnifying lens, and a clipboard for important notes. What she doesn't have: space to do her experiments.What does she expect? She's a rabbit, so of course she's going to have lots of brothers and sisters living with her.
So Charlotte puts her scientific method to use to solve her problem. She starts by asking a question. Then she forms a hypothesis: If I can get rid of my brothers and sisters, I will have room to be a scientist. To test her hypothesis, she conducts an experiment - or two - which don't quite end the way she hoped.
Time for Plan B: if she was going to get some space, she would have to go there. To space. And when she gets there, she has lots of room for all her experiments. There's only one problem: Charlotte misses her family.
What I love about this book: what a fun way to introduce kids to the scientific method! There's great back matter, including a list of the steps of the scientific method. I also love the end papers, which are blueprints of her space lab. And I like how Charlotte finds the solution to her problem.
Beyond the book:
Do Science! Make some kites and fly them in the March winds. Experiment with kite shapes and tails, size and weight, materials (can you make a kite out of stuff from the recycling bin?). Try flying kites under different conditions.
Keep a Question Notebook - someplace you can write down questions you have. Like how do birds fly when it's windy, and can you teach bumblebees to drink sugar water from a jar lid? Leave some room beneath the question so you can scribble ideas for how to find out the answers. Then use the scientific method to find the answers.
Meet the Author: Scientists sometimes get their ideas from strange places. Author Camille Andros says she got her idea for this book while in the shower. Here's an interview with the author.
Today is Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event in which bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's site. She keeps an ever-growing list of Perfect Picture Books. Review copy provided by publisher. It should hit bookstore shelves early next week.