The STEM Club Goes Exploring

January 13, 2017

The STEM Club Goes Exploring. Lois Melbourne. 2016. 48 pages. Greenleaf Books. [Source: ARC provided courtesy of NetGalley.]

I’m in love with this book! It is a phenomenal exploration of STEM careers, education, and how they make society run smoothly. It’s a great introduction to the different ways people contribute to society, and does so in a fun and engaging way.

First, the characters are a diverse group of students, representing a range of cultural and gender identities. This will really help students relate to the people who guide them through the story. Additionally, the writing is easy to understand, and explains the careers in age-appropriate tone and language.

The content in this book shines. I work on a college campus and appreciated that so many aspects of STEM were represented. Often, it’s easy to just think about scientists in labs or doctors. However, this book looks at both the commonly-known career paths associated with STEM, but also includes the behind-the-scenes careers that are critical to society that don’t get the same shine. What really stood out is how the story naturally incorporates information for readers about what to consider when planning their career- what to major in, what courses to take, and even how geographic regions might lend themselves to certain courses of study. This level of detail is what plants the seed of interest in STEM careers while also making it attainable.

Perhaps aptly, the book features computer-generated images. The drawings are detailed and sharp with vibrant colors. They definitely add to the charm of the story.

I highly recommend this book, especially for older elementary students (3rd-5th grades). While it’s still a picture book, it also has a fair amount of text which can be read aloud or for independent reading.

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