Tag Archives: science

Solar Eclipse

augustsolareclipse_0On August 21st, there will be a total solar eclipse for parts of the United States. NASA reports:

Anyone within the path of totality can see one of nature’s most awe inspiring sights – a total solar eclipse. This path, where the moon will completely cover the sun and the sun’s tenuous atmosphere – the corona – can be seen, will stretch from Salem, Oregon to Charleston, South Carolina. Observers outside this path will still see a partial solar eclipse where the moon covers part of the sun’s disk. (https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/)

You can use the link below to check out NASA’s interactive website. You can use the website to determine what time the eclipse will be visible from where you live.

https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/interactive_map/index.html

Remember to wear special protective glasses when you observe the eclipse!

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Book Review: Jack and the Geniuses

Today I recommend: Jack and the Geniuses at the Bottom of the World by Bill Nye the Science Guy and Gregory Mone.

Traveling to Antarctica for a prestigious science competition, twelve-year-old Jack and his genius foster siblings, Ava and Matt, become caught up in a mystery involving a bill nye bookmissing scientist. (This is the first book in a series.)

You read that right! Bill Nye the Science Guy was one of the author’s for this book so as you might expect there is lots of science information, and inventions all throughout this book. It never feels slow or overwhelming, and the end-notes add even more interesting explanations. This is a fast paced mystery, and Jack is a humorous narrator. I’m looking forward to the next book in this series. You can find Jack and the Geniuses at the Bottom of the World in the Juvenile Fiction section at J NYE.

Weather Questions?

Have you ever had a question about the weather in and around Chicago? WGN’s Tom Skilling answers these sorts of questions and you can write to him at http://wgntv.com/category/weather/weather-blog/ask-tom-why/

Recently he answered  a question about how many days on average does Chicago have high temperatures in the 70s? The answer: on average Chicago experiences 59 days per year. (http://wgntv.com/2017/06/20/how-many-days-per-year-does-chicago-have-high-temperatures-in-70s/)

Summer Solstice

June 21st is the summer solstice! This is the longest day of the year for most places in the Northern hemisphere, and is when the sun reaches it’s highest point in the sky.

Celebrate by exploring the solar system with NASA’s Solar System Exploration game where you can learn more about the sun, stars, and planets. https://solarsystem.nasa.gov/kids/index.cfm

Photo Credit:  NASA/European Space Agency. Published: 14 September 1999

 

June 16th

On June 16th, 1963 Soviet Cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova became the first woman to travel into space. She spent 71 hours in space and completed 48 orbits before returning to earth. History.com notes that:

“The United States screened a group of female pilots in 1959 and 1960 for possible astronaut training but later decided to restrict astronaut qualification to men. The first American woman in space was astronaut and physicist Sally Ride, who served as mission specialist on a flight of the space shuttle Challenger in 1983.” http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/first-woman-in-space

 

almost astronautsYou can learn more about the women who almost became astronauts in Almost Astronauts: the Story of the Mercury 13 Women by Tanya Lee Stone. You can find this book in the Juvenile Nonfiction section at j629.45 STO.

How does your garden grow?

With the weather finally warming up we have started to think about gardening! Have you ever wanted to start a vegetable garden? The University of Illinois created a chart with suggested times to plant vegetable gardens:

Planting Dates for Chicago

Vegetable Plant Seeds Indoors Transplant Into Garden
Broccoli March 10 – March 25 April 15 – May 10
Cabbage March 25 – April 5 May 1 – May 25
Cauliflower March 25 – April 5 May 1 – May 25
Eggplant April 5 – April 20 May 20 – June 10
Herbs April 1 – April 15 May 1 – June 10
Lettuce March 25 – April 5 May 1 – May 25
Muskmelon April 25 – May 5 May 20 – June 15
Pepper April 5 – April 20 May 20 – June 10
Tomato April 20 – May 1 May 20 – June 15
Watermelon April 25 – May 5 May 20 – June 15

For more tips and tricks for planting a vegetable garden check out the University of Illinois’ gardening website or books available at the library!

Book Review: Finding Wonders

This week I read: Finding Wonders by Jeannine Atkins.finding-wonders.jpg

A biographical novel in verse of three different girls in three different time periods who grew up to become groundbreaking scientists.

I really enjoyed this book. The poems cover the lives of three female scientists: Maria Merian who studied caterpillars and metamorphosis, Mary Anning who studied fossils, and Maria Mitchell who studied the night sky looking for comets. This was a quick read, each chapter is written as a short poem. The language and description are beautiful. If you like poetry I recommend checking out this book!  Look for this book in our Juvenile Fiction section at the call number J ATKINS.

~aw

Earth Science with Edna

This is our new friend, Edna.

edna

Her hobbies include reading, exploring, and watching the latest Disney movie with a big bucket of popcorn.  Her most favorite activity is learning about science and experimenting with ideas.

Edna’s latest area of interest is gardening.  She loves the smell of flowers and enjoys eating lots of different fruits and vegetables- except for Lima beans!  She would really like to have her own garden, but she’s not very good at keeping even a cactus alive!

edna-sad-cactus
Edna’s not-so-healthy cactus

Lately, she has been reading about a different way of growing plants called, hydroponics.  Hydroponics is a way of growing plants without soil.  How can this be?  Edna always thought that soil was needed to make plants grow!  Technically plants need soil for its nutrients and as support system for its roots to hang on to. SO…if you put the nutrients that the plant needs right into the water and if you have something to support the plant and its roots, the plant won’t need the soil.  It’s very scientific and Edna needs to do some more research.

Watch this fun video to learn more!