The power and potential of literature to learn science has long been recognized by both science and literacy specialists. Literature is often a child's first introduction to science and the first encounter with the concept of science and the role of scientists. The problem is that much science literature focuses mostly on the scientist or the science. This article responds to the imbalanced portrayal between science and scientist in children’s literature. It also discusses the value of scientific picturebook biography to teach science, introduces the notion of Way-In and Stay-In texts, and provides examples of both types of texts along with instructional strategies that can be used to teach disciplinary core ideas in Life Science. Core ideas include: From molecules to organisms: structures and processes; Ecosystems: interactions, energy, and dynamics; Heredity: inheritance and variation of traits: Biological evolution: unity and diversity. It ends with final thoughts.

Author Bio

Dr. William Bintz is Professor in Literacy Education in the Department of Teaching, Leadership, and Curriculum Studies at Kent State University. He has taught high school English/Language Arts in Chicago, Illinois, and middle school English/Language Arts in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, San Juan, Puerto Rico and Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. He earned his Ph.D. in reading education at Indiana University. Prior to joining the faculty at Kent State, he was a Visiting Lecturer at the Armidale College of Advanced Education in Armidale, Australia, as well as an assistant professor at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky, James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, and the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky. His personal experiences and professional interests include literacy across the curriculum, K-12, collaborative teacher research, interdisciplinary curriculum, and using award-winning literature as “Way-In” and “Stay-In” literature to create and sustain student interest in content area topics where no interest currently exists. Currently, his professional interest is the use of Crossover Picturebooks, K-12. He can be reached at .



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