Reading Science Stories
is an eBook filled with stories of scientific adventurers. Some are adapted from "The Story of Science" (Smithsonian Books), some are new. The stories are intended to be fun to read and also enlightening.
I wrote the book because I saw the need for a reader that could be used to teach nonfiction reading skills and to teach some serious science, math and history. In other words, it is a book that crosses disciplines.
One chapter in the book tells about an American colonist, a loyalist, who fought in the Revolutionary War on the British side. Most Americans called him a "traitor." But King George III lauded him. Does he belong in history books? Yes, but he was also a spectacular scientist/inventor who made a major discovery about heat, and patented a stove that was better than Ben Franklin's. So it's hard to squeeze him into any one discipline. Why should we try? Finding connections between subjects makes them all more exciting.
Reading Science Stories
is now available in eBook format and can be purchased directly from Joy at
My Book Orders.
Reading Science Stories eBook is also available for download from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBookStore and iTunes, as well as, other online booksellers.
I hope it will also available in paperback later this year. We are relying on those who read it and like it to spread the word!
Early colonists had to go to church at least once a week. They got fined or put into stocks if they didn't go. Why and how did that change? Our freedom to believe or not believe didn't come easily. Read this book and learn what Thomas Jefferson and a mixture of Americans had to do to insure religious freedom for all Americans.
FREE TO BELIEVE (or not) is an illustrated ebook that tells the story of religious freedom in America. It includes a bevy of ORIGINAL DOCUMENTS and some thoughts on how to tackle them. Here's a
link where you can read a few pages.
One kind of freedom clearly impacts others: This book includes a chapter on a Virginia plantation owner who freed all his slaves (he had more than Jefferson and Washington had combined), showing that it could be done.
Reading Science Stories Sample Chapter
(8.2MB) Chapter One: "Take a Number and press it into clay"
The National Teachers Association
reviewed Reading Science Stories
and added the book to its list of Recommended Books and Products known as NSTA Recommends
. NSTA Recommends
is generally regarded as the best source available for thoughtful, objective recommendations of science-teaching materials. Their panel of reviewers—top-flight teachers and other outstanding science educators—has determined that the products recommended there are among the best available supplements for science teaching. (Quoting NSTA)
Here is what NSTA Recommends
has to say about Reading Science Stories
"Misunderstood. Ostracized. Passionate. Determined. These are just some of the traits of the scientists portrayed in Joy Hakim’s e–book entitled Reading Science Stories: Narrative Tales of Scientific Adventurers. Hakim, a well–noted author whose previous works eloquently demonstrate the intersection of science and history, provides middle and secondary school readers with captivating stories about both the accomplishments and struggles of significant scientists.
With most of the 22 chapters adapted from Hakim’s previous works, Reading Science Stories provides students with a glimpse into the lives of scientists to convey the real–life triumphs and tribulations they encountered. The scientists are presented in separate chapters in chronological order, beginning with Pythagoras and ending with Donald Johanson, the paleoanthropologist who discovered the bones of “Lucy” in 1974. Most of the scientists selected by Hakim are from early Greek and Egyptian civilizations, the Renaissance, and the 1700s. Familiar scientists such as Galileo, Newton, Fahrenheit, and Einstein are included, but there are also more obscure scientists, such as Faraday, Bernoulli, and the lone female du Châtelet. Although some might find the lack of female scientists as a downside of the text, only two chapters focus on science in the 20th century, when female scientists were beginning to gain entrance into the male–dominated field. The final chapter provides an overview of the interdependence of science and mathematics by highlighting again some of the previously discussed scientists and their work.
Middle and secondary science teachers who are seeking resources to support content–area Common Core ELA and Literacy standards and add a human dimension to discussions of scientific discoveries will find this book quite useful. Quotes from or about the scientists start each chapter, providing an opportunity for analyzing and interpreting text. To support readers of various levels, Hakim provides parenthetical definitions of technical or more advanced vocabulary. Diagrams, maps, and other visual features also support the text. Tracing the scientists through time provides context for how ideas have changed over the centuries and promotes the notion of an ever–evolving understanding of the natural world.
What “certainties” are students learning today that will be seen as naive by the next generation? A final message of this book is how discoveries were often under–appreciated, or their value even unknown, during the lives of the scientists to whom we now give such significant accolades. Sometimes the scientists were ostracized, ridiculed, or even condemned to death because of their seemingly outlandish ideas, and yet their determination and passion for understanding thankfully did not waiver. Our students today will be the scientists who continue this exploration, and they can greatly benefit from reading the stories of the scientists on whose shoulders they will stand."
And here's what physics professor/author Alan Hirshfeld says about "Reading Science Stories": "I couldn't put it down -- or whatever the equivalent is for an ebook. Educational, humorous (love the chapter titles), and a breeze to read. Kids will certainly get a more human-centered view of science from it."
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Right now I'm immersed in biology, especially the story of how we figured out the DNA/RNA code that guides all life. I'm actually writing three complementary books in biology. One begins with Vesalius and Leonardo da Vinci, continues on to Darwin and Mendel, ending as the 19th century ends. The second book focuses on genetics, beginning at Columbia University's famous "fly room."and finally arriving at today's world of CRISPER and horizontal gene transfer.
The third book begins with the formation of Earth and the first microbial life. Before long you have fish, then dinosaurs, then us.
History Helps Make Sense of Science
"The Never-ending Story––Using the Narrative as a Fundamental Approach to Teaching Biology and Beyond."
(348.6KB) Recently I read a scholarly article by Canadian Marcus Kumala titled "The Never-ending Story––Using the Narrative as a Fundamental Approach to Teaching Biology and Beyond." Kumala asks how concerned educators and professional scientists can teach science better. He answers, "Perhaps by giving students and teachers a conceptual lifeline, by teaching science––biology in particular––as the context-driven history courses they were meant to be." Of course I agree. Right now I have two biology books in progress, each approaches the story from a different perspective. More details to come.
THE STORY OF SCIENCE, published by the Smithsonian, is now available in three beautifully illustrated ebooks.
Biology's iconic Carl Woese with me at The University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. I'm currently writing books on evolutionary biology and Woese may have done as much for the field as anyone since Mr. Darwin. Actually Worse , who died in 2012, might not agree: he had problems with Charles Darwin and his image, so he might go farther.
**Note the license plate.
Special discounts and sample books are available.
A History of US
Tel: (800) 445-9714
The Story of Science
Tel: (202) 633-2495
Reading Science Stories
For more information, please visit Joy's Ordering/Contact page.
Corrupt politician Boss Tweed, by Thomas Nast, in A History of US, Book Seven
Gentleman often smoked outside in the 19th century, many thought it improper to smoke in the presence of ladies. Here a boy steals a puff. No one understood the health issues and that smoking can kill. From A History of US, Book 8, Ch 18