SAN FRANCISCO -- Four authors and an illustrator of children's science books won the 2007 AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize for Excellence in Science Books for recently published works that promote scientific literacy, are scientifically sound, and foster an understanding and appreciation of science in readers of all ages.
The prizes are being awarded for individual books in four categories: Children's Science Picture Books, Middle Grades Nonfiction Science Books, Young Adult Science Book and Hands-on Science/Activity Book. The winners were selected by a judging panel, and will receive a cash prize of $1,500 and a plaque.
"These prizes recognize the importance of science books for children and young people that engage these readers by being clever and entertaining, while teaching them about science in the process," said Alan I. Leshner, chief executive officer at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and executive publisher of its journal, Science.
The AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize for Excellence in Science Books celebrates outstanding science writing and illustration for children and young adults. AAAS and Subaru co-sponsor these prizes to promote science literacy by drawing attention to the importance of good science writing and illustration.
"Subaru would like to congratulate the award winners for their outstanding contribution to science writing and illustration," said Tim Mahoney, Subaru of America Inc. "This type of contribution is one that is recognized today, but can be appreciated for generations to come."
The 2007 recipients are:
Children's Science Picture Book
An Egg Is Quiet
Author: Dianna Aston
Illustrator: Sylvia Long
Chronicle Books, 2006
Striking and accurate drawings of all types of eggs—from the very tiny blue crab egg to the hefty ostrich egg—bring this book to life. The beautiful illustrations and simple yet informative text show why eggs are different shapes (seabird eggs are pointy at one end, so they roll around in safe little circles, not off the cliff), colors (to camouflage themselves), and textures (amphibian eggs are "gooey", which keeps them from drying out). The author excellently captures the incredible variety of eggs while celebrating their form and function.
Middle Grades Nonfiction Science Book
Team Moon: How 400,000 People Landed Apollo 11 on the Moon
Author: Catherine Thimmesh
Houghton Mifflin, 2006
This book takes readers behind the scenes of the mission that first placed humans on the Moon—dramatically telling, for example, the story of the near-catastrophe the astronauts faced when they were less than 35,000 feet from the lunar surface. The pictures do the story full justice, and it was good to see the emphasis on the team who made an historic event possible. Team Moon was also honored with the American Library Association's 2007 Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award.
Young Adult Science Book
Tigerland and Other Unintended Destinations
Author: Eric Dinerstein
Island Press, 2005
Through a series of autobiographical essays, the author recounts his efforts to preserve wildlife and wildlands. He describes his not-always-enjoyable adventures seeking tigers in Nepal, giant river otters on the Orinoco, snow leopards in Kashmir, and bats in Costa Rica's Monteverde cloud forest. There are encounters with wildebeest on the Serengeti, the ancient vegetation of New Caledonia, prairie dogs and bison on North America's Great Plains, and the fauna and flora (endemic and introduced) of the Galápagos. Woven into his narrative are portraits of environmentalists and considerations of critical conservation issues such as ecotourism, habitat fragmentation, and ecosystem restoration. The book provides a quiet yet compelling introduction to conservation biology.
Hands-On Science/Activity Books
Thomas Edison for Kids: His Life and Ideas, 21 Activities.
Author: Laurie Carlson
Chicago Review Press, 2006
The author uses the life and inventions of Thomas Edison to inspire a new generation of curious minds. Young readers will find an excellent introduction to the relations among science, technology, and society. That perspective on the history and nature of science provides the backdrop for descriptions of Edison's curiosity, experimentation, inductive reasoning, and many inventions. Each chapter in the chronological narrative is strengthened by the inclusion of two or three related hands-on activities. For example, students can build a simple circuit to test various materials for electrical conductivity.
The AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize for Excellence in Science Books celebrates outstanding science writing and illustration for children and young adults. The Prize began in 2005 by looking back on decades of outstanding science books and honoring five authors and one illustrator for their significant and lasting contribution to children's and young adult science literature and illustration. As of 2006, the Prize honors recently published, individual science books.
The prizes are meant to encourage the writing and publishing of high-quality science books for all age groups.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is the world's largest general scientific society, and publisher of the journal, Science (www.sciencemag.org). AAAS was founded in 1848, and serves 262 affiliated societies and academies of science, reaching 10 million individuals. Science has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world, with an estimated total readership of 1 million. The non-profit AAAS (www.aaas.org) is open to all and fulfills its mission to "advance science and serve society" through initiatives in science policy; international programs; science education; and more. For the latest research news, log onto EurekAlert!, www.eurekalert.org, the premier science-news Web site, a service of AAAS.
About Subaru of America, Inc.
Subaru of America, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan. Headquartered in Cherry Hill, N.J., the company markets and distributes Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of nearly 600 dealers across the United States. Subaru makes the best-selling All-Wheel Drive car sold in America based on R.L. Polk & Co. new vehicle retail registration statistics calendar year-end 2004. For additional information visit www.subaru.com.
Since 1965, Science Books & Films (SB&F) has been the authoritative guide to science resources, bringing expert information to bear on choices of materials for a library, classroom or institution. Published by AAAS, SB&F is the only critical review journal devoted exclusively to print and nonprint materials in all of the sciences and for all age groups. Every year, SB&F (www.sbfonline.com ) evaluates nearly 1,000 books, videos, DVDs and software packages for general audiences, professionals, teachers and students from kindergarten through college.
The awards will be bestowed at the 2007 AAAS Annual Meeting in San Francisco on 17 February. (See http://www.aaas.org/meetings.) For more information on these or other AAAS awards, go to http://www.aaas.org/aboutaaas/awards.
AAAS is the world's largest general scientific society, dedicated to "Advancing science · Serving society."