Learning should be fun. Then why not teach, and learn, in a fun way? This is what the poet Celia Berrell has achieved with her Science Rhymes.
As a father, first, and a devotee of the New Formalist movement in poetry, second, I unhesitatingly recommend this book to all who sense a touch of both the tough-minded and the tender-minded within them.
As a father to three young boys who have all grown up on Bill Nye the Science Guy and Mr. Wizard's World, and thus exulting in the discoveries of the sciences, I quickly found that Berrell's skillfully crafted rhymes appealed to their scientific curiosities, and led them to do exactly what science enjoins us to do: Ask questions, and seek answers. Indeed, readers of Berrell will find this very sense of wonder and searching examination beautifully captured in her poem, "Why".
And while, in the poems, scientific discoveries relating to such things as light and magnetism are duly addressed, the actual history of scientific discovery also receives attention. The stories of such icons of science as Isaac Newton and Archimedes are told in a manner, to me, blissfully reminiscent of Longfellow's poem of Paul Revere. Needless to say, my boys loved these!
As one who favors the New Formalist structure of verse, I found her adept use of meter and rhyme a refreshing contrast to the prosaic plainness of the prevalent so-called "free verse" style.
Finally, as the son of a longtime school teacher, I would recommend these rhymes to educators, and especially those working with youngsters (I believe the term in Australia is "ankle-biters"), as a captivating way of telling the stories of science.