Blogger Lisa Taylor

Is science funny?

Is science funny?

Before school lets out for summer, I will make twenty-three visits to local schools to highlight summer programs. This year’s theme of science, Fizz, Boom, Read! ©, is a programming delight, but it posed a dilemma for me. I always share a funny book on my visits. Titles by Jon Scieszka, Mac Barnett, and Amy Krause Rosenthal are my usual outreach companions of choice. This year, however, I needed something “sciency,” something I won’t mind reading twenty-three times, something that will crack up 2nd and 3rd graders.

Hmmm… what to read, what to read…

And then I found it.

“Hey, kids! Want to learn about Archimedes’ principle?”

You’d never figure that to be a crowd pleaser, but, it isI tried it! I don’t usually pitch particular books here, but What Floats in a Moat? written by Lynne Berry and illustrated by Matthew Cordell (2013, Simon & Schuster) begs to be shared this summer. It is a silly, funny, rhyming tale of trial and error as Archie the Goat and Skinny the Hen try to cross a moat in a barrel that is in turns full, empty, and finally, just right. If there is a more fun way to learn about Archimedes’ Principle, it surely involves actual water! In fact, an entire program could be built around this book if you had a tub of water and a few film canisters or other barrel stand-ins. If you’re looking for a funny and entertaining way to incorporate science into your visits or programs, this is it.

There are hundreds of entertaining and informative science-themed picture books, but sometimes, you just want to laugh.  Is science funny?  It can be.

If you know any other funny science books, please leave a comment.


  1. Renee Perron

    How about Science Verse by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith.

    1. Lisa

      Good suggestion. You can never go wrong with Jon Scieszka. 🙂

  2. Holly Koster

    If you pick out the better parts, 11 Experiments that Failed by Jenny Offill and Nancy Carpenter can go over well.

    1. Lisa

      Thanks for the suggestion. I’ll check it ou. I still have 19 visits to make.

  3. Julie Bowers

    It’s not teaching real science but I’m loving :The Secret Science Project that Almost Ate the School” by Judy Sierra; pictures by Stephen Gammell. Perfect for third graders. Kindergartners are a little worried when the cat gets eaten by the goo, but it all turns out okay in the end.

    1. Minetta Lippert

      I used “The Secret Science Project that Almost Ate the School” too! The 2nd through 4th graders loved it! My favorite part was always when groups of 3rd graders would look at their teachers as the slime eats a 3rd grade teacher in the book. For the younger groups, I read “The Everything Machine” by Matt Novak. Again, it was a bit of a stretch but I related it to the T in STEM.

      1. Lisa

        Thanks! I still have about 18 visits to go, so I appreciate the continuing suggestions. I’ll read them all.

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