Science and Technology

People will accept your idea much more readily if you tell them Benjamin Franklin said it first.  David H. Comins

Cool Stuff 2.0 and How it Works.  Chris Woodford.  DK, 2007.
Over 100 cutting edge inventions from robot card to high-tech toilets.  Very high interest.
Grades 4-8




The Hindenburg.  Patrick O’Brien.  Henry Holt, 2000.
This dramatic picture book focuses less on the tragedy and more on the development, invention and dream of the airship.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud 3rd-6th grade



Hooray for Inventors!  Marcia Williams.  Candlewick, 2005.
A light-hearted, cartoon style chronology of invention.  There is much to enjoy and pour over here, but the format is not suitable for large groups.  Individuals can really dive in.
3rd-5th grade



How Nearly Everything Was Invented: By the Brainwaves.  Jilly McLeod.  DK, 2006.
Miniature Brainwaves (little people with big ideas) lead readers through this busy, large format history of invention.  Perfect for individuals.
4th-6th grades



Leonardo da Vinci.  Kathleen Krull.  Viking, 2005.
Scientist was not a word during da Vinci’s time, yet he used a scientific approach in his work.  Very readable with much to discuss.  You may want to avoid reference to his being accused of “having sex with a male prostitute.”  Otherwise, an outstanding biography.
Read-aloud 4th-6th grade


Leonardo da Vinci.  Diane Stanley.  Morrow, 1996.
Illustrated in Renaissance style, this fascinating and informative biography follows da Vinci’s life from birth to death.  An ALA Notable Book.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud 4th-6th grade



Leonardo da Vinci for Kids: His Life and Ideas: 21 Activities.  Janis Herbert.  Chicago Review Press, 1998.
Herbert explains how da Vinci used the materials and techniques of his time to create his masterpieces and present his unique ideas which were far ahead of his time.  Some activities require adult help.
5th grade and up

Now and Ben : The Modern Inventions of Benjamin Franklin.  Gene Barretta.  Holt, 2009.
Describes some of Franklin’s most important inventions and how they are used today.  Clever and lively.  Kids will appreciate that Franklin was ahead of his time.  Picture Book.
Read-aloud 3rd-6th grade



What Color is My World? The Lost History of African-American Inventors.  Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
The inventions of 16 little-known African American inventors have made a big difference in our everyday lives. Their inventions include the adapter that gave color to PC displays, the illusion transmitter responsible for 3-D images, an electroacoustic microphone, a bread machine, ice cream scoop, Super Soaker water toy.  Entertainingly presented.
Read-aloud 3rd-6th grade



Who was Leonardo da Vinci?  Roberta Edwards.  Grosset & Dunlap, 2005.
An accessible introduction to the life and accomplishments of this famous Italian.
Chapter Book.
Read-aloud 3rd-6th grade
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