Spotlight on Science Squad

Welcome to the Science Squad, a citizen science organization for curious kids who love nature and science! Follow along as Squad members journal their efforts to make a difference in the world around them. We love these thoughtful combinations of science discovery and real-kid problems. Here’s a rundown of all the titles in this awesome series!

Crab Campaign: An Invasive Species Tracker’s Journal

It’s summer vacation and Ned Bolling is stuck in Maryland. Determined to make the most of his time off, Ned convinces his Science Squad to devote their summer project to tracking down the Chinese Mitten Crab, an invasive species that could be threatening the Chesapeake Bay. Although the crabs are elusive, their environmental and economic impact is devastating. Will the Squad’s varied awareness campaigns and wide search through the bay’s waters prove successful? And what counts as success anyway?

 

Nocturnal Symphony: A Bat Detector’s Journal

Twelve-year-old Brubeck Farrell has two problems. First, she needs to help the Science Squad of Central Wisconsin raise enough money for quality ultrasound equipment to record bat sounds. Second, she needs to convince her mom to marry her longtime girlfriend, Ginger. When Ginger overhears some of Bru’s bat sounds and wants to use them in the music she’s composing for a video game, Bru realizes that the solutions to her two problems may be intertwined. Will Bru’s fundraising efforts get the Squad the bat detection equipment they need? And what will it take to get her mom and Ginger to say “I do”?

 

Runway ZomBee: A Zombie Bee Hunter’s Journal

It’s summer vacation, but twelve-year-old Raksha isn’t doing much relaxing. There is one project left before her Science Squad team earns their last badge (and a trip to Hawai‘i on the line!), when she gets an opportunity to attend a highly competitive fashion camp that is too good to pass up. It isn’t long before her Science Squad work hunting for zombie bees is taking over her life. She hardly has time to prepare for her fashion camp runway show. Can Raksha pull it all together and prove that she can be both a fashion queen and a science geek?

 

Hatchling Hero: A Sea Turtle Defender’s Journal

Clarita Rosita Santiago Romero hasn’t made many friends since moving to North Carolina last year. But that changes when she joins her local Science Squad and simultaneously gets sucked into a quest to defend a sea turtle and her eggs from poachers. But how much impact can a group of kids have on one sea turtle’s life? Welcome to the Science Squad, a citizen science organization for curious kids who love nature and science! Follow along as Squad members journal their efforts to make a difference in the world around them.

 

Monarch Mystery: A Butterfly Researcher’s Journal

Ever since his family moved to Texas, nothing seems to be going right for Bertie. He manages to alienate most of the Science Squad at the first meeting before they even begin their project. And things just keep getting worse. The other Squad members avoid him, and their project, to catch and tag monarch butterflies, proves surprisingly hard. Plus, something strange is going on with the few specimens the Squad does find. With the calendar counting down the days, and the butterflies migrating farther south for the winter, can Bertie solve the mystery and still collect enough butterflies to release at his school’s Day of the Dead festival?

 

Pigeon Problems: An Urban Bird Researcher’s Journal

Anthony Briggs hates pigeons, and for good reason. Thanks to his funny way of walking and his leg braces, his classmate TJ started calling him “Pidge,” a nickname he’d love to dump. So when the Science Squad recruits students for a project to solve why pigeons come in so many different colors, Anthony is anything but interested . . . until he learns that the reward is spending a night at the Natural History Museum. He signs up in a flash, and ends up paired with TJ. Anthony is stuck listening to TJ’s insults and doing two people’s work. Can he stick it out to win the museum overnight? Or will the birds get the best of him again?

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