My First Book of Microbes
Sheddad Kaid-Salah Ferrón and Eduard Altarriba
From the award-winning team whose previous titles include My First Book of Quantum Physics, this new STEM title explains the intriguing world of microorganisms – good and bad -to upper primary children and beyond.
They start by saying that these minute organisms come in all manner of different shapes and sizes, and using a rice grain for comparison show alongside it, a bacterium and a virus; then go on to explain the role of electron microscopy in observing such things as viruses.
Diving deeper into the hidden world of microbes, viruses, bacteria, fungi and more, they explain what these things are, where they are found, why many of them are vital to our very existence, as well as looking at the infections some microbes can cause, with a historical overview of the major epidemics and pandemics – including one we all know about, the devastating effects of COVID 19, which has its own double spread.
A number of topics are explored including algae, protozoa, phages,
archaea (only discovered in 1977), how viruses cause infections, the importance of hand washing, the role of antibiotics
and how some bacteria can develop a resistance to them, the way our immune system protects us, vaccines and their role in immunisation and the eradication of some diseases such as Smallpox.
A number of key scientists – Louis Pasteur (who pioneered modern microbiology), Robert Koch who discovered the bacteria causing tuberculosis and Edward Jenner developer of the first vaccine are featured, and the important role of teamwork in this area of science is discussed.
As always with this series, every spread is well-designed with a clear layout, diagrams and fact boxes that augment Sheddad Kaid-Salah Ferrón’s thoroughly engaging text; and Eduard Altarriba’s colourful, sometimes playful illustrations help bring to life in an accessible manner, a topic that is sure to excite many youngsters, be they budding scientists or not.