Children's library

Liz Heinecke—The Kitchen Pantry Scientist: Physics for Kids

Physics for Kids

Physics for Kids

THE KITCHEN PANTRY SCIENTIST: PHYSICS FOR KIDS
Liz Heinecke
Quarry Books, Feb.8, 2022, $19.99
Series: The Kitchen Pantry Scientist
ISBN-10: 0760372438, ISBN-13: 978-0760372432
Aimed at readers aged 6-12 years

Heinecke reports:

Physics for Kids is the third book in my Kitchen Pantry Scientist series. Like Biology for Kids and Chemistry for Kids, Physics for Kids features the biographies of 25 scientists, paired with science projects related to their work.

To illustrate how one concept builds on another and how representation in science has changed, the scientists are presented in chronological order. I try to include well-known scientists, scientists who did not receive the recognition they deserve, and modern luminaries with interesting jobs and inspiring personalities.

Liz Heinecke, photo by Amber Procaccini

Liz Heinecke, photo by Amber Procaccini

It is always difficult to narrow the list to 25, but I try to focus on finding a diverse group of individuals from around the world, at least half of whom are women. It is important to highlight obstacles that people have faced while trying to do their work, so I write about struggles along with triumphs.

Creating projects related to real research is a challenge I tackle at my kitchen table. Recreating Thomas Young’s historical light interference experiments proved tricky, but I came up with a few projects that make it easy to create fringe patterns. In the Chanda Prescod-Weinstein lab, kids make pizza dough and watch it rise, illustrating the expansion of the universe. The Burçin Mutlu-Pakdil lab encourages kids to attach balls to either end of a string and throw them to see how galaxies linked by gravity might orbit one another.

When Minneapolis photographer Amber Procaccini and the kids arrive for a photo shoot, science comes to life. I run around making sure we get the right shots and setting up the next project while Amber takes hundreds of pictures. We break for snacks between projects and the kids throw a tennis ball for our dog.

It takes a team to build each book. I am lucky to work with a wonderful group of individuals. Artist Kelly Anne Dalton incorporates biographies, photographs, and other images into each portrait to create a science story. Once everything is sent in, the design team at Quarry Books (Quarto) lays out the pages, transforming the collection of photos, artwork, and words into a beautiful book.

Contact info:

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Tell your fellow NASW members how you came up with the idea for your book, developed a proposal, found an agent and publisher, funded and conducted research, and put the book together. Include what you wish you had known before you began working on your book, or had done differently.

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Hero image by awestfrl from Pixabay.

February 21, 2022

Advance Copy

The path from idea to book may take myriad routes. The Advance Copy column, started in 2000 by NASW volunteer book editor Lynne Lamberg, features NASW authors telling the stories behind their books. Authors are asked to report how they got their idea, honed it into a proposal, found an agent and a publisher, funded and conducted their research, and organized their writing process. They also are asked to share what they wish they’d known when they started or would do differently next time, and what advice they can offer aspiring authors. Lamberg edits the authors’ answers to produce the Advance Copy reports.

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Publication of NASW author reports in Advance Copy does not constitute NASW's endorsement of any publication or the ideas, values, or material contained within or espoused by authors or their books. We hope this column stimulates productive discussions on important topics now and in the future as both science and societies progress. We welcome your discussion in the comments section below.

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