Tag Archives: science literacy

Word Root Exercise: Micro-

Here is a worksheet on the Greek root micro-. This root is so productive in English that I imagine it would be hard to find anyone over the age of five who doesn’t understand that it means “small.” It also means, according to the book from which I drew the text at the base of all the word root exercises found on this blog, “millionth.”

This productive root can be found at the base of such high-frequency words in general discourse as microphone and microwave as well as scientific vocabulary like microbe and microclimate.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Reproduction

OK, science and health teachers, here is a reading on reproduction along with its attendant vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet. As is generally true of the readings from the Intellectual Devotional series, this one-page reading is a remarkably thorough introduction to reproduction in the plant and animal kingdoms.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Axiom

“Axiom (noun): A generally or universally accepted truth or incontestable principle; self-evident or fundamental proposition; verity. Adj. axiomatic; adv. axiomatically.

‘He recalled a slang axiom that never had any meaning in college days: ‘Don’t buck the system; you’re likely to gum the works.’ John  O’Hara, Appointment in Samarra”

Excerpted from: Grambs, David. The Random House Dictionary for Writers and Readers. New York: Random House, 1990.

Word Root Exercise: Iso-

Here is a worksheet on the Greek word root iso-. It means equal and same. It’s at the root of a number of frequently used words in mathematics and the sciences; the two words I recognize from the list on this document (which were chosen, as the book from which they were drawn emphasizes, because of the frequency with which they appear on college admissions tests like the SAT) are isosceles and isotope.

Otherwise, as you will quickly perceive, the words on this worksheet are not high-frequency words in everyday discourse.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

The Normal Curve

Here is a reading on the normal curve along with its accompanying vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet. If statistics are your bailiwick, I would appreciate a comment on whether or not you think this is a good general introduction to the subject. Even for an innumerate dolt (with, I concede, not much interest in the subject) like myself, this reading makes sense.

But what do you think?

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Word Root Exercise: Heli/o

Here is a worksheet on the Greek word root heli/o. It means, simply, sun. Like many Greek roots, this one forms the basis of a number of scientific words like heliograph, heliotrope, and helium. I understand these are not exactly high-frequency words in English, but these words, if the book that animated this series of worksheets is accurate, will show up on the SAT and other gatekeeping instruments for post-secondary institutions and graduate programs.

In any case, it’s hard to imagine a global studies or world history course (or whatever your school district calls it) that wouldn’t mention heliocentrism.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

John J. Audubon

If you can use it, and I say that with the confidence of experience, because the study of John J. Audubon at the primary and secondary secondary levels of education isn’t much done, here is a reading on John J. Audubon along with its accompanying vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet. As with most readings from the Intellectual Devotional series, this one-page text does an excellent job of encapsulating a complex life, particularly Audubon’s, uh, unorthodox working methods. What is doesn’t report, which I learned in the process of preparing this post, is that Audubon was a slaveholder.

So, what a bitter irony that he is buried in Harlem.

This post would not be complete without mentioning Audubon’s achievements, particularly his majestic and magisterial Birds of America, the double elephant folio he produced, and which is now a high spot in American antiquarian book collecting. Most copies–there are 120 known in all–of the book are in the possession of research libraries around the United States–the Beinecke Library at Yale keeps its copy (like its copy of the Gutenberg Bible, which came out of the Melk Abbey) out for display in its main gallery. When I followed various of the great research libraries on Twitter e.g. The Huntington Library, the Lilly Library, The Newberry Library, and, again, the Beinecke at Yale, a couple of them filmed and posted the turning of pages of Birds of America, a ritual worth watching.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Thomas Henry Huxley on the Great Tragedy of Science

“The great tragedy of Science—the slaying of a beautiful hypothesis by an ugly fact.”

Thomas Henry Huxley, “Biogenesis and Abiogenesis” (1870)

Excerpted from: Schapiro, Fred, ed. The Yale Book of Quotations. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006.

Word Root Exercise: Di, Diplo

Here is a worksheet on the Greek word roots di and diplo. They mean two and double. You’ll find these roots underneath an everyday word like dilemma, but on this worksheet (which, if the book from which it is adapted is to be believed, contains words commonly found on the SAT), you’ll find it at the base of linguistic terms like digraph and diphthong, and scientific words like dichloride and dichromate.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Annual Health Exam

OK, health teachers, if you can use them, here is a reading on the importance of an annual health exam along with its accompanying vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet. For a one-page reading, this document pack in a lot of information–perhaps all that one needs to understand why one should get a physical every year.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.