Creative Ebooks for Curious Minds

Become a mad scientist, a coder, an artist,  a photographic scavenger,  a computer programmer, a tinker, a gamer, a candlestick-maker.  Check out these five, inspiring ebooks from the LRC Digital Library.

41pGC8+JCaL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Tinkering: Kids Learn by Making Stuff by Curt Gabrielson

After-school and out-of-school programs—as well as home schooling—have been growing steadily for nearly a decade, but instructors are still searching for high-interest content that ties into science standards without the rigidity of current classroom canon. The author draws on more than 20 years of experience doing hands-on science to facilitate tinkering: learning science while fooling around with real things. In this book, you’ll learn:

  • Tinkering techniques in key science areas
  • How to let kids learn science with hands-on tinkering
  • Engaging techniques for science learning at home, in school, or at a makerspace or library
  • Step-by-step instructions for activities that don’t end with a single project, but that provide many paths for “tinkering forward”.

51YECe75BJL._SX258_BO1,204,203,200_15 Dangerously Mad Projects for the Evil Genius Edition: 1 Evil GeniusSimon Monk

Using easy-to-find components and equipment, this do-it-yourself book shows you how to create a variety of mischievous gadgets, such as a remote-controlled laser, motorized multicolored LEDs that write in the air, and a surveillance robot. You’ll also learn to use the highly popular Arduino micro-controller board with three of the projects.

  • Features step-by-step instructions and helpful illustrations
  • Covers essential safety measures
  • Reveals the scientific principles behind the projects
  • Removes the frustration factor—all required parts are listed, along with sources

Each fun, inexpensive Evil Genius project includes a detailed list of materials, sources for parts, schematics, and lots of clear, well-illustrated instructions for easy assembly. The larger workbook-style layout and convenient two-column format make following the step-by-step instructions a breeze.

61Zw7wUBw1L._SX258_BO1,204,203,200_Art Lab for Kids: 52 Creative Adventures in Drawing, Painting, Printmaking, Paper, and Mixed Media-For Budding Artists

by Susan Schwake, Rainer Schwake

A refreshing source of ideas for creating fine art with children,  Art Lab for Kids encourages the artist’s own voice, marks, and style.  The labs can be used as singular projects or to build up to a year of hand-on fine art experiences. Art Lab for Kids is the perfect book for creative families, friends, and community groups and works as lesson plans for both experienced and new art teachers. Children of all ages and experience levels can be guided by adults and will enjoy these engaging exercises.

519YzQJe9SL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Art Is Every Day: Activities for the Home, Park, Museum, and City by Eileen S. Prince

The projects and activities in Art Is Every Day will help children of any age (and adults) improve their basic understanding and production of art, or reinforce concepts they may have already learned. The book stresses art vocabulary, which in turn promotes observation and discovery. It’s the perfect resource for parents whose children’s school has cut its art program, grandparents looking for some fun activities to share with their grandchildren, or art teachers who would like fresh ideas for meaningful field trips or homework assignments to support their curriculum.

super_scratch_programming_adventure_2nd_editionSuper Scratch Programming Adventure!: Learn to Program by Making Cool Games The LEAD Project

Scratch is the wildly popular educational programming language used by millions of first-time learners in classrooms, libraries, and homes worldwide. By dragging together colorful blocks of code, kids quickly learn computer programming concepts and make cool games and animations. In Super Scratch Programming Adventure!, kids learn programming fundamentals as they make their very own playable video games. This full-color comic book makes programming concepts like variables, flow control, and subroutines effortless to absorb. Packed with ideas for games that kids will be proud to show off, Super Scratch Programming Adventure! is the perfect first step for the budding programmer. 

61OwB4tPVKL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_UNBORED Games: Serious Fun for Everyone  by Joshua Glenn, Elizabeth Foy Larsen, Tony Leone

UNBORED Games offers a gold mine of creative, constructive fun: intricate clapping games, bike rodeo, Google Earth challenges, croquet golf, capture the flag, and the best ever apps to play with Grandma, to name only a handful. Gaming is a whole culture for kids to explore, and the book will be complete with gaming history and interviews with awesome game designers. The lessons here: all games can be self-customized, or hacked. You can even make up your own games. Some could even change the world.


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