Science and Coding Books For Kids

I mention a couple of kids books in my overviews on Fossil and Evolution Books and Books about Climate Change. Here are a few excellent science and computer programming (aka coding) books for kids.

Geology book for kids

Screen Shot 2015-11-25 at 1.16.16 PMThe Incredible Plate Tectonics Comic: The Adventures of Geo, Vol. 1 is a good stab at making a comic that teaches some science.

We follow the adventures of Geo and his robotic dog, Rocky as the visit the ancient supercontinent of Pangea. This journey is pursuant to Geo’s upcoming test in his geology class.

What is the center of the Earth made out of? How do volcanoes work? Why do earthquakes happen? How did scientists figure out plate tectonics?

The book is geared for kids starting whenever they can read, or a bit older. Great drawings, great science, great story.

Screen Shot 2015-11-25 at 1.20.15 PM

Physiology and the Human Body for Kids

The The Manga Guide to Physiology is one of several Manga Guides that use a cartoon approach to, in this case, physiology. It isn’t all magna, but includes sections of regular text that give the reader a breather from the whacky world of anime where all the characters breath through their eyes. I like that aspect of the book because it serves a wider range of readers.

Once again, a central theme of the story is a kid cramming for a test. Seems to be a popular theme.

Screen Shot 2015-11-25 at 1.25.38 PMSurvive! Inside the Human Body, Vol. 1: The Digestive System is the first in a series of anime like, but not exactly, volumes that combine a comic theme and inserts in normal rhetorical form. The Survive books are pretty detailed, and targeted for kids 8 and above.

Survive! Inside the Human Body, Volume 1 begins an epic journey through the human body with a look at the digestive system. This lively, full-color science comic explores Phoebe’s insides after she accidentally swallows a microscopic ship. The only problem? Dr. Brain (the ship’s eccentric inventor) and Phoebe’s friend Geo are on board!

Volume 2 is on The Circulatory System, and Volume 3 is on The Nervous System.

Kid of like The Incredible Journey meets the Magic School Bus meets Pokemon.

Programming Books for Kids


Screen Shot 2015-11-25 at 1.01.18 PMJavaScript for Kids: A Playful Introduction to Programming may be considered a form of child abuse, but that all depends on one’s view of javascript. In order to teach this Internet based programming language, the author, Nick Morgan, takes the reader through a number of examples of game building. This book is best for kids about 10 years old and up, but this will depend on how much the nearest javascript savvy adult is.

JavaScript for Kids is a lighthearted introduction that teaches programming essentials through patient, step-by-step examples paired with funny illustrations. You’ll begin with the basics, like working with strings, arrays, and loops, and then move on to more advanced topics, like building interactivity with jQuery and drawing graphics with Canvas.

Along the way, you’ll write games such as Find the Buried Treasure, Hangman, and Snake.

Screen Shot 2015-11-25 at 1.06.41 PMThe Super Scratch Programming Adventure! (Covers Version 2): Learn to Program by Making Cool Games is now out in a second edition, covering Scratch version 2. Scratch is part of a family of very kid friendly programming languages. The book suggests it is for ages 8 and above, but in various incarnations, Scratch can work for much younger kids. This is a good start on programming for robots. The book guides the reader through development of various games, and provides guidance in getting the Scratch environment running on your computer. This is a very visual, object oriented programming language, and the book is too.

A good companion book, focusing on Scratch Junior (a version of Scratch) is The Official ScratchJr Book: Help Your Kids Learn to Code.

Screen Shot 2015-11-25 at 1.11.16 PM

The Official ScratchJr Book is the perfect companion to this free app and makes coding easy and fun for all. Kids learn to program by connecting blocks of code to make characters move, jump, dance, and sing.

Each chapter includes several activities that build on one another, culminating in a fun final project. These hands-on activities help kids develop computational-thinking, problem-solving, and design skills.

The Official ScratchJr Book is actually geared towards somewhat younger kids.

Comments

  1. […] C). But MakeBlock provides MBlock, which is a form of Scratch. (I have two reviews of Scratch books here.) This form of scratch lets you use scratch like programming blocks, and the drag and drop […]

  2. […] C). But MakeBlock provides MBlock, which is a form of Scratch. (I have two reviews of Scratch books here.) This form of scratch lets you use scratch like programming blocks, and the drag and drop […]