As a science teacher and a logical brain thinker, I laugh and state ‘of course science matters, what else would anyone believe?’ But in truth, the book by Robert M. Hazen and James Trefil is more than promoting the claim that science is important.

Throughout the pages of this book, they cover almost every topic in science. Thankfully, they do so with the perspective of the stuff you need to know and understand to be a global citizen. This means it is written for the layperson, not for the deeply science-minded.

I picked up this book with the hope of finding a chapter or two (or maybe just some pages) I could use in my classroom as a focus on what we need to understand. Instead, I found an entire book I think students should read.

The pages cover an understanding of everything from the vast universe to the smallest atom. Concepts that impact us every day are covered and explained. I like the format of the text because it feels like the authors are speaking with me, not at me or from a lofty position above. I feel like they present difficult topics in such a way that they make sense and I walk away feeling empowered in the learning.

Their goal was to present the ten (10) big ideas in science you should understand and they did that. Even for a person who studies science (like me), there was still information to be learned. And for the teacher in me, there were not only pages to use but new thinking for learning – ways to present the material that would be novel but clarify harder concepts.

If you want to learn a little bit more about science. Whether you want to boast at the next dinner party about your understanding of science or you just want to be better informed about the world around you and what you read in the news – then this is the book you should read. And maybe read twice – I know I will… as will I pass it along to someone else.

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Winter Reading Review: Science Matters

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