Notes From a Children's Librarian

By Julie Booker

STEM Books to Inspire Young Readers

Our Children's Librarian columnist, Julie Booker, brings us a new view from the stacks every month.

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These STEM books will inspire young readers to take their curiosity to the next level.

Book Cover Secret Coders

Secret Coders, by Gene Luen Yang and Canadian illustrator, Mike Holmes, is a unique graphic novel. Hopper doesn’t fit in at her new school until she befriends Eni who teaches her (and the reader) how to read binary code using coins and a piece of chalk. When the two discover a turtle robot, Eni shows Hopper how to use the old programming language Logo to move it. Sometimes they write the wrong number of steps or send the turtle in the wrong direction and have to try again, a great STEM lesson. Progressively harder coding challenges are presented to the reader: “Can you figure it out?” By the sixth book, the reader is writing code to help save the world and find Hopper’s long-lost dad, and working the tasks is a step-by-step tutorial in programming! There’s also a website wit …

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Notes From a Children's Librarian: Books on Biodiversity

Books complementing the Grade 6 Biodiversity unit. 

Exploring Space: Notes From a Children's Librarian

Reading the books on this list (which complement the Grade 6 Science and Technology Unit) will result in a thirst for all-things-space, as well as a deep appreciation for the scientific imagination.

Notes From a Children's Librarian: Great Biographies

Great biographies for Grades 3 to 6, part of both the Reading and Writing curricula.

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Books on Flight

Great books to complement the Grade 6 Science and Technology Unit. 

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Rocks and Minerals

Nonfiction, picture books, and novels that support the Grade 4 curriculum. 

Media Literacy for Kindergarten

Our Resident Children's Librarian recommends resources to complement the Media Literacy objective for kindergarten. 

Notes From a Children's Librarian: Animal Books

Great nonfiction titles to introduce "Animal Classifications," the Grade 2 science unit. 

Notes from a Children's Librarian: On Structures

Great fiction and nonfiction titles to launch the Grade 3 science unit on structures and buildings. 

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Books on Citizenship

How do you inspire kids to be good citizens? How do you launch a student’s understanding of rights and responsibilities?

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Books on Respect

Books about respecting differences, community, one's own self, and the earth.

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Canadian Heritage and Identity

Books to support the Grade 6 Social Studies curriculum. 

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Books on Kindness and Caring

Picture books featuring traits from character-based education. 

Notes From a Children's Librarian: On Perseverance

Books that show the development of perseverance as a character trait. 

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Books on Integrity

Julie Booker on characters with a strong moral code, those who find a way to stay true to themselves and the things they believe in.

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Books on Cooperation

These picture books make good springboards for discussion on cooperation and the complexities involved when people work together.

Picture Books on Honesty

These picture books about honesty run the gamut—from blatant lies to a mere fudging of the rules.

Notes from a Children's Librarian: On Fairness and Justice

Race, bullying and difficult choices are all addressed in these picture books about fairness for children from Kindergarten to Grade 3.

Notes from a Children's Librarian: Books on Working Together

What's gonna work? Team work! Especially in this great kids book recommendations. 

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