Science Fun: Hands-on Science with Dr. Zed
Christy Conte is a member of the Parents Advisory Committee at the
YMCA’s Parent and Child Enrichment Centre, and a journalist.
Gordon Penrose, better known as Dr. Zed, has been an award-winning
fixture on the Canadian children’s science scene for years. Science
Fun is a collection of over 35 experiments gleaned from Dr. Zed’s
column in Chickadee magazine and previous Penrose books. These fun and
simple activities are designed to illustrate such basic principles as
absorption, evaporation, kinetic energy, and Newton’s First Law.
As is typical of OWL titles, Science Fun is colorful and well designed.
Each experiment includes numbered age-appropriate instructions
accompanied by photographs and cartoon drawings. Most books of this
genre tend to spell out conclusions; Dr. Zed encourages creativity and
independent thought by relegating the “right answers” to a
concluding chapter. Older children and adults will appreciate the more
abstract “Science Concepts” section, which cross-references the
experiments with broader scientific principles. Though the activities
themselves are geared to children aged 4 to 8, the conceptual chapter
should extend the book’s appeal by a few grade levels.
This valuable hands-on guide to scientific exploration is highly