This is a collection of 6 short and engaging non-fiction stories. Each half-page article includes 3 to 4 reading comprehension, opinion, or application questions. Keys and a bibliography are also provided.
Story 1: A Spoonful of Metal (Properties of Elements)
- Stan Jones has blue skin, a side-effect from drinking water laced with silver ions. Silver, like several other metals, has anti-microbial properties. Unfortunately, the side effects from using metals as medicine can be worse than the disease.
Story 2: Bunsen - More than a Burner (Scientists, Atomic Structure, Spectroscopy)
- Robert Bunsen probably shouldn’t get credit for the Bunsen burner, but he should get more credit for creating the first spectroscope and using it to discover cesium and rubidium.
Story 3: Physicist for Fun (Scientists, Atomic Structure)
- When Maria Goeppert-Mayer won the Nobel Prize for her work on the structure of the nucleus, a local newspaper headline read, “Mother Wins Nobel Prize”.
Story 4: Let It Glow (Properties of Elements, Radioactivity)
- A job painting glow-in-the-dark watches paid well, but not well enough to compensate for the rotting bones of the workers.
Story 5: Dying for Dyes (Properties of Elements)
- Napoleon may have been murdered by his wallpaper.
Story 6: Dating Game (Isotopes, Carbon Dating)
- The Shroud of Turin may or may not be the burial shroud of Jesus - the controversy over its carbon dating.
The Wasp Whisperer