Counting on Katherine

September 10, 2018

Counting on Catherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13
by Helaine Becker

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Blurb: From Katherine‘s early beginnings as a gifted student to her heroic accomplishments as a prominent mathematician at NASA, this is the story of an American icon who not only calculated the course of moon landings but, in turn, saved lives.

Want to make a case about precise computing? Read an excerpt of this book to your students about the importance of Katherine’s math being precise or people would die in space!

This harrowing biography of how Katherine Johnson, an unsung hero, helped the Americans in the Space Race shows just how important minorities were to the effort.

My favorite quote, from Katherine Johnson herself, comes from the back papers: “Despite her many achievements, Katherine never liked to take any credit.  Her reason? ‘Because we always work as a team,’ she says. ‘ it was never just one person.'”

This book is for:

  • space enthusiasts
  • mathematicians
  • biographies highlighting otherwise unsung people of history
  • February — Black History month
  • Women’s History month
  • Context Clues: use the page about “all of the computers were women” to have students figure out what the author means by “computers” (people, not machines)
  • goal setting
  • reaching one’s potential, despite setbacks

Check it out at your local library! ISBN 9781250137524

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A Beginner’s Guide to Coding

October 25, 2017

by Marc Scott

Have fun suing Scratch and Python

Media of A Beginner's Guide to Coding

This nonfiction book walks students step-by-step through creating a Scratch account and building code in Scratch.  The second half of the book does the same for Python, another coding platform.

Students who just want to expand their knowledge in Scratch, or to learn a new programming language, Python, will find detailed how-to instructions for both!

Scratch

Python

 

Other Programming Languages (found in the Find Out More section)

Snap! 

Touch Develop (for tablets or mobile devices) — build apps

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