Children’s STEM Picture Book By Jane Lowry
Illustrated by: Sukarno Achmad
Published on: October 10, 2019
A rhyming picture book that helps explain what is causing the weather to change and what we can all do to help.
A curious girl asks lots of questions – and gets answers from experts! Why is the weather getting worse in her town? Where do solar and wind energy come from? How does global warming happen? Where do greenhouse gases come from? What can her town do about it? Find the answers in this rhyming picture book for 6-9 year olds. It gently introduces renewable energy, the science behind climate change, and the importance of trees to budding scientists and engineers. STEM/STEAM themed, The Why-entist and the Wild Weather; encourages kids to ask questions, imagine possibilities, and act to make them happen. Kid friendly facts and real world vocabulary are used in this inspiring story. It has been called The Lorax for Clean Energy.
In The Why-Entist and the Wild Weather, a young brother and sister go on a walk with their uncle. The little girl is known around town for being curious and for asking a lot of questions. As a result, the town has nick-named her the “The Why-entist.” During their walk in the forest, they discover an old rock mine. Their uncle sees potential in this and decides to buy it and shortly after cuts down trees, builds roads, and uses gas generators. Soon after everyone starts noticing the weather changing. However, The Why-entist wants to know exactly what has caused this wild weather so that it can be fixed and begins to ask questions. A lot of questions. Thankfully, there are a lot of folks and resources on hand to answer those questions and help identify ways to help the weather and Mother Nature.
To me, the picture book is split into two parts. The first part tells the story of how the weather came to be ‘wild.’ It describes the walk with their uncle and what happens to the weather after the uncle buys the mine. The second part is where the young girl begins to learn about the weather. Because this is a STEM-themed book, the explanations are a bit more scientific than you might see in a typical picture book for this age. A couple of examples include the definition of global warming and description of carbon dioxide and methane that even includes the terms ‘CO2’ and ‘CH4.’ At the end of the book, the author provides a page of definitions that were introduced within the story such as PV and Wind Energy.
Although the subject matter is serious, there is some levity at times with the illustrations. On most pages, two squirrels follow the story as it progresses. These squirrels react to what is going around them to sometime comic-effect and wear different outfits too. My personal favorite is when they are in the rock mine and one squirrel picks up a shiny stone and gets down on one knee as if proposing to the other squirrel. (I personally think she said yes.)
Overall, it was an informative book that introduces children to key phrases and terms they may hear on the TV, radio, or from general conversation. However, I did struggle with some of the rhyme sections and finding the correct rhythm to them.
Rating: 4 stars
Thank you to Aunt Addie’s Book Tour and the author for the advanced reader copy and the opportunity to provide an honest review.
(20% Discount through the Author’s Website with promo code ADDIE20)
Meet Author Jane Lowry
Since the first time Jane Lowry saw a headlamp shine while pedaling her bike, she has been in love with renewable energy and what it can do.
As a former teacher, Jane knows the importance of motivating children to learn more STEM/STEAM material. She believes that it’s never too early to gently introduce young minds to real world vocabulary and ideas in a friendly story.
Her love of teaching and energy has taken her as far away as Japan. She’s active in the United Way’s “Read With Me” program.
Today, Jane works with engineers and scientists who research renewable energy technology from solar, wind, tidal, geothermal, to biomass.
Born in Canada, she now resides in Colorado with her Navy veteran husband, two growing up fast teens, Jasmine the rescue dog, and Pickles and August, her cats. Her love of writing, discovering what clean energy can do, coupled with cooking, travel and what’s new in the delicious world of chocolate keep her busy.
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