Annal: 2007 Orbis Pictus Award

Results of the Orbis Pictus Award in the year 2007.

Book:Quest for the Tree Kangaroo

Quest for the Tree Kangaroo: An Expedition to the Cloud Forest of New Guinea

Sy Montgomery, Nic Bishop

It looks like a bear, but isn't one. It climbs trees as easily as a monkey — but isn't a monkey, either. It has a belly pocket like a kangaroo, but what's a kangaroo doing up a tree? Meet the amazing Matschie's tree kangaroo, who makes its home in the ancient trees of Papua New Guinea's cloud forest. And meet the amazing scientists who track these elusive animals.

Book:Freedom Walkers

Freedom Walkers: The Story of the Montgomery Bus Boycott

Russell Freedman

On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks refused to move to the back of the bus and give up her seat to a white man. This refusal to give up her dignity sparked the Montgomery bus boycott, a yearlong struggle, and a major victory in the civil rights movement. Source notes, map, bibliography, index.

Book:Gregor Mendel

Gregor Mendel: The Friar Who Grew Peas

Cheryl Bardoe, Jos. A. Smith

The only picture book available about the father of genetics and his pea plants!

How do mothers and fathers - —whether they are apple trees, sheep, or humans— - pass down traits to their children? This question fascinated Gregor Mendel throughout his life. Regarded as the world’s first geneticist, Mendel overcame poverty and obscurity to discover one of the fundamental aspects of genetic science: animals, plants, and people all inherit and pass down traits through the same process, following the same rules.

Living the slow-paced, contemplative life of a friar, Gregor Mendel was able to conceive and put into practice his great experiment: growing multiple generations of peas. From observing yellow peas, green peas, smooth peas, and wrinkled peas, Mendel crafted his theory of heredity— - years before scientists had any notion of genes.

Children will be inspired by Gregor’s neverending search for knowledge, and his famous experiments are easy to understand as an introduction to genetics.

Book:John Muir

John Muir: America's First Environmentalist

Kathryn Lasky, Stan Fellows

Quoting from John Muir’s diaries, Kathryn Lasky tells the inspiring tale of one of America’s most dedicated environmentalists, aided by Stan Fellows’s evocative, dramatic acrylic paintings.

From the meadows of Scotland to the farms of Wisconsin, from the swamps of Florida to the Alaskan tundra, John Muir loved the land. Born in 1838, he was a writer, a scholar, an inventor, a shepherd, a farmer, and an explorer, but above all, he was a naturalist. John Muir was particularly devoted to the high cliffs, waterfalls, and ancient giant sequoia trees that, through his careful influence, were set aside as the first national park in America—Yosemite. Here is the life story of the man who, moved by a commitment to wilderness everywhere, founded the Sierra Club in 1892, a conservation group that carries on his crucial work to this day.

Book:Something Out of Nothing

Something Out of Nothing: Marie Curie and Radium

Carla Killough McClafferty

Marie Curie’s story has fascinated and inspired young readers decades. The poor Polish girl who worked eight years to be able to afford to attend the Sorbonne in Paris became one of the most important scientists of her day, winning not one but two Nobel Prizes. Her life is a fascinating one, filled with hard work, humanitarianism, and tragedy. Her work with her husband, Pierre – the study of radioactivity and the discovery of the elements radium and polonium – changed science forever. But she is less well known for her selfless efforts during World War to establish mobile X-ray units so that wounded French soldiers could get better care faster. When she stood to profit greatly from her scientific work, she chose not to, making her methods and findings known and available to all of science. As a result, this famous woman spent most of her life in need of money, often to buy the very elements she discovered.

Marie Curie’s life and work are given a fresh telling, one that also explores the larger picture of the effects of radium in world culture, and its exploitation and sad misuse.

Book:Team Moon

Team Moon: How 400,000 People Landed Apollo 11 on the Moon

Catherine Thimmesh

Here is a rare perspective on a story we only thought we knew. For Apollo 11, the first moon landing, is a story that belongs to many, not just the few and famous. It belongs to the seamstress who put together twenty-two layers of fabric for each space suit. To the engineers who created a special heat shield to protect the capsule during its fiery reentry. It belongs to the flight directors, camera designers, software experts, suit testers, telescope crew, aerospace technicians, photo developers, engineers, and navigators.

Gathering direct quotes from some of these folks who worked behind the scenes, Catherine Thimmesh reveals their very human worries and concerns. Culling NASA transcripts, national archives, and stunning NASA photos from Apollo 11, she captures not only the sheer magnitude of this feat but also the dedication, ingenuity, and perseverance of the greatest team ever — the team that worked to first put man on that great gray rock in the sky.

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