No Fair Science Fair

Overview

Oh no! Otis needs a science fair project in a hurry. The problem is that all the good ideas are already taken and the judges will arrive on Friday. Luckily a blue jay outside the classroom window inspires Otis to make a bird feeder and observe which birds come to it. Even when other kids question the "scientificness" of his project and no birds come to the feeder, Otis doesn't give up—winning the prize for stick-to-it-iveness.
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Overview

Oh no! Otis needs a science fair project in a hurry. The problem is that all the good ideas are already taken and the judges will arrive on Friday. Luckily a blue jay outside the classroom window inspires Otis to make a bird feeder and observe which birds come to it. Even when other kids question the "scientificness" of his project and no birds come to the feeder, Otis doesn't give up—winning the prize for stick-to-it-iveness.
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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 1–3—Mr. Zee is trying to model good scientific practices for his students. "Don't forget, scientists are observers," he says as he launches into a round of "I spy" and other activities to get them thinking. Otis, however, has trouble coming up with an idea and is discouraged by classmates whose projects are off to a great start. Despite his genuine curiosity about birds, his confidence is tested by friends who make unkind remarks about his smelly milk-carton bird feeder and the fact that it has failed to attract any customers. Even at the end of the week, Otis's data is scant; birds have finally come, but the child must still determine exactly who they are. Clearly, he will be continuing with his research, and visiting judges reward his efforts with the "Stick-with-It Prize." In educating children, it is valuable to remember that the process is often as important as the final product. Poydar successfully conveys the message in this cheerful school story with her familiar gouache and pencil illustrations. A final page lists the scientific questions that match the many projects represented in Otis's classroom. A natural choice for science fair season, this story can be paired with Lynn Plourde's Science Fair Day (Dutton, 2008) and will be useful for general discussions about persistence.—Gloria Koster, West School, New Canaan, CT
Kirkus Reviews

School stories are Poydar's niche, and this latest fits right in, addressing the (n)ever-popular science fair. One week before the big day, Otis still doesn't have a project, while all around, his classmates busily make observations, take measurements and record data. His laid-back teacher subtly points him toward a project perfectly suited to his interests: birds. Otis spends Monday and Tuesday preparing a milk carton to serve as a birdfeeder, while his classmates pooh-pooh not only his idea but his materials and his entire project. Doggedly, he sticks with it, recording his observations, which include a lack of birds. On Friday, Otis still has no bird sightings, but the judges are impressed with his persistence and award him the "Stick-with-It Prize." And just as it is awarded, everyone sees birds at his feeder. Teachers will appreciate Mr. Zee's parting line as a classmate tells Otis he is lucky: "Stick-to-it-iveness isn't luck." The author's gouache-and-pencil illustrations portray a busy classroom full of budding scientists. A list of science project ideas to search for in the artwork provides added dimension. A great book for sharing with classes on many levels, this is both a good primer for science fairs and for skills such as being a good friend, appreciating differences and persistence. (Picture book. 6-9)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780823422692
  • Publisher: Holiday House, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/7/2011
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD420L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

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