To Charlie’s classmates, it seems like the kiwi bird got a raw deal: It barely has wings at all, so it can’t fly, and its long whiskers are more like a cat’s. How can such an unlucky bird even survive in the wild? But Charlie thinks the kiwi is cool, and with the help of his great-great-great-great-great-grandpa Charles Darwin, he travels back in time to learn how the kiwi evolved from a dinosaur-like creature to its present-day wingless state. Learning that “little changes in each generation can add up to BIG changes,” Charlie begins to understand that the kiwi bird’s flightless ways and catlike whiskers might be a bit odd, but they are exactly what has helped the species survive over thousands of years! Based on an exhibit from the New York Hall of Science that is currently touring the country, this Darwinian adventure through time explains the hugely important principle of evolution in an accessible, kid-friendly style.
Top Nonfiction Titles from School Library Journal and The Horn Book Magazine
Author: Roger Sutton
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
The Common Core in Grades K–3 is the second in a series of comprehensive tools to tap into the vast flow of recently published books for children and teens, offering recommendations of exemplary titles for use in the classroom. Currency meets authority, brought to you by the editors of the highly regarded review sources School Library Journal and The Horn Book Magazine. This guide includes hundreds of selections for grades K–3 published since 2007 recommended by The Horn Book Magazine. The titles are grouped by subject and complemented by School Library Journal’s “Focus On” columns, which spotlight specific topics across the curriculum. Providing context for the guide, and suggestions on how to use these resources within a standards framework, is an introduction by Common Core experts Mary Ann Cappiello and Myra Zarnowski. These educators provide perspective on the key changes brought by the new standards, including suggestions on designing lessons and two sample plans. Following the introduction, you’ll find a wealth of books, by category. (Note that the guide is Dewey-Decimal based, so you may want to dig around, for example, in “Social Sciences” to find some titles that you might first seek in “History” or “Science.”) Each section includes a listing of the top titles with brief, explicit annotations, and key bibliographic data. “Focus On” articles are appended to appropriate categories to support in-depth curricular development. Each of these articles includes a topic overview and list of current and retrospective resources (including some fiction) and multimedia, enabling educators to respond to the Common Core State Standards call to work across formats.
Integrating Research and Practice in Teaching and Learning about Evolution
Author: Karl S. Rosengren
Publisher: Oxford University Press
A recent poll revealed that one in four Americans believe in both creationism and evolution, while another 41% believe that creationism is true and evolution is false. A minority (only 13%) believe only in evolution. Given the widespread resistance to the idea that humans and other animals have evolved and given the attention to the ongoing debate of what should be taught in public schools, issues related to the teaching and learning of evolution are quite timely. Evolution Challenges: Integrating Research and Practice in Teaching and Learning about Evolution goes beyond the science versus religion dispute to ask why evolution is so often rejected as a legitimate scientific fact, focusing on a wide range of cognitive, socio-cultural, and motivational factors that make concepts such as evolution difficult to grasp. The volume brings together researchers with diverse backgrounds in cognitive development and education to examine children's and adults' thinking, learning, and motivation, and how aspects of representational and symbolic knowledge influence learning about evolution. The book is organized around three main challenges inherent in teaching and learning evolutionary concepts: folk theories and conceptual biases, motivational and epistemological biases, and educational aspects in both formal and informal settings. Commentaries across the three main themes tie the book together thematically, and contributors provide ideas for future research and methods for improving the manner in which evolutionary concepts are conveyed in the classroom and in informal learning experiences. Evolution Challenges is a unique text that extends far beyond the traditional evolution debate and is an invaluable resource to researchers in cognitive development, science education and the philosophy of science, science teachers, and exhibit and curriculum developers.