Are you aware that the National Center for Education Statistics reported in December 2008 that U.S. fourth graders ranked 11th in math achievement and 8th in science achievement relative to that of their peers in other countries in 2007? You can download the entire report at http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2009/2009001.pdf (2077 KB) or access excerpts at http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2009001
President Barack Obama's focus on early education (see http://www.whitehouse.gov/issues/education/) is an acknowledgement of our need to improve our global standing and regain our leadership in preparing young people for skilled workers in emerging industries -- such as biotech.
My objective in writing this series is two-fold. 1) to interest youngsters in biology, and science in general through entertaining, age-level-appropriate stories and 2) to lay the historical foundation in the early stories for the more-sophisticated adventures of the maturing (and later, adult) “Bioloney” twins. The stories of the twins’ early years lend themselves to reading aloud by parents...a waning activity that hopefully will never completely cease to exist.
The "BioFables" series of children's books has the potential to stimulate early interest in the sciences through the adventures of twins Mallory ("Bioloney") and Melody Malloney, starting at around age 7, as they discover some "extremophile" characteristics and following them through 12th grade.
The first two BioFables books are now complete. The third book making up the 3-book "BioFables: The Journey Begins" series was put on hold since we submitted a proposal at the end of February 2009 to an education publisher. Realizing that reaching our children is an urgent matter, we chose to withdraw the proposal on August 5 in order to bring this series to life.
The children's edition of the first two BioFables books are now uploaded and are free to everyone. They include illustrations and links to additional information on the Web.
We're now working on a parent/teacher version which will include study notes that may be used as a science and social science curriculum resource and guide to discussing the book with your children. This version will be available at a modest cost.
We're also working on a subscription model, whereby parents, teachers and other adults may sign up children to receive chapters or chapter segments of BioFables by e-mail. The requesting adult will receive the parent/teacher version via e-mail at the same time. We're hoping to make it an on-demand model, so you will be able to request issues based on your children's readiness rather than at a set interval. We'll keep you posted on this service.
Meanwhile, we invite you to read the Introduction to BioFables HERE. All links to Books 1 and 2 of the series are now live.
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