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Editor's Blog

Welcome to the SB&F Editor's Blog. I am Maria Sosa, Editor-in-Chief of SB&F. Through this blog I hope to interact with the SB&F community and post news and information related to science books, videos, authors, opportunities and other topics of interest to our readers. I hope you find the blog useful and entertaining. Please, join the conversation by posting a comment on our Facebook page. I'd love to hear from you!


Syndication
  • The April issue of SB&F is now available to subscribers. Please visit the current issue section to read the issue online or to download and print the issue. In this issue you’ll find a feature article on the children’s science series Let’s-Read-and-Find-Out. Learn about the history of this renowned series from current editor Phoebe Yeh. Several of the book’s celebrated authors and illustrators, such as Aliki, Wendy Pfeffer, and Anne Rockwell, talk about their experience writing and illustrating the series too. The April issue also includes over 50 new science books reviews. A few of my favorites reviewed this month are the latest installment in the Scientists in the...      Read more...
    Published 13 Apr 2010 7:58 AM by Heather Malcomson
  • One of my very favorite children’s science book authors has re-launched a kid-friendly, fun, colorful, smart new website. After poking around the site this week, I thought it was definitely worth mentioning to our readers. Seymour Simon is a recipient of the SB&F Prize Lifetime Achievement Award for his significant contributions to children’s science literature. Seymour’s interest in science and passion for bringing science to kids shines through on his new website, www.SeymourSimon.com . The new site is easily navigable by children and is full of noteworthy features for children, parents and teachers. For children there are science jokes and riddles, an online science dictionary...      Read more...
    Published 20 Apr 2010 1:34 PM by Heather Malcomson
  • We would like to congratulate Dr. Sallie (Penny) Chisholm on receiving the Alexander Agassiz Medal from the National Academy of Sciences for her “original contribution in the science of oceanography.” The NAS honored Penny at an awards ceremony on April 25 in conjunction with their annual meeting for her “pioneering studies of the dominant photosynthetic organisms in the sea and for integrating her results into a new understanding of the global ocean.” Along with being a preeminent oceanographer, Penny is also the co-author of this year’s SB&F Prize winning children’s book, Living Sunlight: How Plants Bring the Earth to Life . If you have not seen this...      Read more...
    Published 26 Apr 2010 10:35 AM by Heather Malcomson
  • Contextual teaching and learning helps students relate subject matter content to real world situations. It motivates students to make connections between knowledge and its applications to their lives. Contextual teaching experiences can include such things as interdisciplinary activities across content areas and problem-based learning activities. A recent study published in the International Reading Association’s Reading Research Quarterly also suggests that contextual teaching can help improve a foundational element of reading comprehension—vocabulary. The April 23 issue of Science (Vol. 328. no. 5977, p. 406) summarized the new research: Can integrated approaches to literacy instruction...      Read more...
    Published 30 Apr 2010 3:00 PM by Heather Malcomson
  • Celebrated since 1919, Children’s Book Week is a week long event meant to encourage and foster a love of reading in young children. The week is marked with celebrations, special events, and activities at libraries, schools and bookstores for children that are designed to encourage a love of books. Children’s Book Week is administered by the Children’s Book Council . The Book Council has created a special website devoted to Children's Book Week . Here you will find bookmarks you can download and a variety of activities for kids and teens, plus tips and resources for teachers, librarians, publishers and booksellers. We’d like to recommend celebrating Children’s...      Read more...
    Published 11 May 2010 10:43 AM by Heather Malcomson
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  • There has been a lot of buzz around the AAAS Education Programs department (where SB&F resides) regarding the new book about Henrietta Lack’s interesting and important life and legacy. ( The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks written by Rebecca Skloot, Crown Publishing, 2010) So much interest in fact that our very own Dr. Shirley Malcom happily agreed to write a review of the book for SB&F. The enthusiasm of Dr. Malcom and others in our department for this book has inspired us to create SB&F Book Club guides for other important, engaging science books for general readers. We hope that these guides can serve as a tool and encourage book clubs all over the nation to choose a science...      Read more...
    Published 27 May 2010 11:09 AM by Heather Malcomson
  • For 44 days the government has been scrambling to clean up and abate the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico as the public stands by waiting, hoping for a solution. The numbers are bleak: 12,000 to 19,000 barrels a day are pouring into the gulf. Assuming a rate of 19,000 barrels a day, about 35 million gallons of oil have been spilled to date (from the National Incident Command’s Flow Rate Technical Group). Researchers now believe that the oil will reach not only the Gulf Coast beaches, but East Coast beaches as far north as Cape Hatteras, NC as well. News of the oil spill is abundant online, on TV, in newspapers. But if you are really interested in the science behind the spill check out Science...      Read more...
    Published 4 Jun 2010 7:14 AM by Heather Malcomson
  • As editor of SB&F I am always on the lookout for new, interesting and unique science books to share with our readers. I’d like to say that I am pretty successful at uncovering little known science books, having them reviewed, and publishing those reviews as quickly as possible. But once and awhile I miss one. Or nearly miss one, as is the case with a book that was recently brought to my attention (thanks to my friends at Science magazine’s Books et al column!). This gem of a little book is called You Can Count on Monsters: The First 100 Numbers and Their Characters by Richard Evan Schwartz. The book was published in February of this year by the science and technology publishers...      Read more...
    Published 10 Jun 2010 6:51 AM by Heather Malcomson
  • With the goal of encouraging book clubs everywhere to choose a nonfiction science book to read and discuss, SB&F has launched its first four book club suggestions with accompanying reading guides. Many popular science books written today have gripping narratives, stranger than fiction storylines, and interesting insights in to current scientific issues. These characteristics make for great discussions of the book. No need to have in-depth knowledge of the subject at hand. Popular science books are written for the general public and are meant to give a broad, but fascinating, look at the world around us. From tales of adventure and discovery around the world to the complexities of the human...      Read more...
    Published 17 Jun 2010 10:29 AM by Heather Malcomson
  • Are you planning on attending the American Library Association Annual Meeting in Washington, DC (starting today and running through Tuesday, June 29)? If so, please stop by the SB&F booth (#4214) to say “Hello!”. It is always a pleasure to meet our subscribers face-to-face and we’d love to hear what you think about the new SB&F Online. Or if you are not a subscriber the conference is a good place to become one! We are offering discounted subscription rates and a free gift (a set of SB&F Prize winning science books and a handy canvas carrying bag) with every new subscription. Plus enter to win a FREE Apple iPad at the booth! Swipe your card at our booth and register...      Read more...
    Published 24 Jun 2010 8:29 AM by Heather Malcomson
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  • The SB&F team has been working very hard over the past several months to create a new online presence for the journal. Long before this new site began being developed, the editors and staff of SB&F were envisioning an online home for SB&F that would allow our subscribers instant, easy access to reliable reviews and a more personalized experience with the journal. With the launch of the new site today, our vision has become a reality! We really hope you enjoy the new format and features of the site. One thing will certainly remain that same as we move forward and get comfortable with our new online home: our commitment to providing quality science material reviews to our subscribers...      Read more...
    Published 28 Jul 2009 6:57 AM by Heather Malcomson
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  • By now I hope you’ve had a chance to read our feature article in the July/August issue of SB&F entitled, " Are You Green Yet? Resources to Inspire Eco-Friendly Living ." (This article is available to subscribers only.) In the article we recommend resources with tips to help children and adults reduce their carbon footprint. Along with eco-friendly advice, the books also include information to help readers increase their knowledge and understanding of hot topic environment issues. As is usually the case, as soon as we put the list of resources together for the article another interesting title shows up on my desk that deserves to be mentioned. The new book from Island Press...      Read more...
    Published 21 Aug 2009 2:08 PM by Heather Malcomson
  • One of the world’s best know naturalist, Edward O. Wilson, is the author of more than 20 books, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Ants and Naturalist . Most recently Wilson has penned a novel entitled Anthill . His first foray in to nonfiction seems to be a grand success. Receiving starred reviews from both Booklist and Publisher’s Weekly , along with positive remarks from The New York Times , Chicago Tribune , The Economist and several highly regarded authors, the book is “the story of a boy who grows up determined to save the world from its most savage ecological predator: man himself.” The book does an exceptional job of weaving real life science in to the story...      Read more...
    Published 20 Jul 2010 8:26 AM by Heather Malcomson
  • This month’s issue of SB&F is devoted to biographies of scientists, engineers, and mathematicians for all age groups. The issue contains an essay by Mike Venezia, author of the Getting to Know the World's Greatest Inventors & Scientists series (Scholastic) about writing biographies for children and also a list of SB&F recommended biographies for both children and adults. The web has many great interactive features profiling the men and women of science, past and present. We’ve uncovered some of the best online resources devoted to the lives of scientists and highlighted them below. The Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/secretlife...      Read more...
    Published 2 Aug 2010 8:00 AM by Heather Malcomson
  • I saw a school bus on my way to work this morning, a reminder that summer is just about over. I am sure many of you are in the midst of getting your libraries and classrooms ready for students, if not already welcoming them through your doors. Be sure to check back often with SB&F Online throughout the year for interesting and valuable science book related activities for your students. We have some exciting things coming up! In fact, I’ve just posted 3 new SB&F Book Club Guides for middle grade students. These guides are great resources to help students explore the concepts in each book and get them talking them. Also, we’ll be announcing the SB&F Prize finalists in October...      Read more...
    Published 23 Aug 2010 10:02 AM by Heather Malcomson
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