Citizen Scientists: Be Part of a Scientific Discovery from Your Own Backyard

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Looking for a way to help your world? Want to be a scientist?

Looking for a way to help your world? Want to be a scientist?

If you answered yes to these questions, Citizen Scientists: Be Part of a Scientific Discovery from Your Own Backyard is a book you will enjoy. Citizen Scientists tells you how to track monarch butterflies to their winter homes in Mexico, learn to see with you ears, and become a young scientist. This engaging book tells how you can contribute to scientific knowledge through a series of outdoor activities. 

Citizen Scientists features four different nature studies, one for each season: Fall Butterflying, Winter Birding, Spring Frogging, and Summer Ladybugging. Each chapter offers an introduction to the activity, background information about the birds/amphibians/insects, instructions and materials for the study, and a story about kids like you who have participated in the citizen science project. Each activity also includes an opportunity to submit your findings – and be a real scientist! Some are yearly events like the Christmas Bird Count, while others occupy a whole season, like FrogWatch. I have participated in several similar citizen science projects and found them very fun and educational. The information included in Citizen Scientists added to the experience.

I enjoyed this book immensely, but it would be nice if more citizen nature projects were included, like Great Backyard Bird Count, Nestwatch, and eBird. Also, frogging is much harder to do in Colorado than if we lived in a more tropical state.

Overall, Citizen Scientists was an engaging book that had great ideas for aspiring scientists. Additional features such as further research resources and interpretive photographs contributed to the book. Also, Citizen Scientists is written so that kids of any age could enjoy it and participate in the nature studies.

Want to be a scientist? Go ahead!