BOOK REVIEW: The Curious Mind of Young Darwin

Curiosity & Darwin

Curiosity & Darwin

Sara Bellis, Caroline Cook, and Jenni Taylor. The Curious Mind of Young Darwin. Shropshire, UK: Field Studies Council, 2008. ISBN: 9781851538171

From Field Studies Council:

As a young boy, Charles Darwin was a great natural explorer! The Curious mind of young Darwin will be an essential guide for young naturalists.

Written to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth in 2009 by Sara Bellis of Shropshire Wildlife Trust, with Caroline Cook and Jenni Taylor of Field Studies Council. Illustrations are by Lyanne Mitchell.

Packed full of questions and observations on the natural world, this is an ideal gift for today’s young, curious nature detective. Find practical advice from the young Darwin on making a natural history collection, carrying out simple chemical experiments and making the most of your time spent outdoors. Suitable for 8 years and upwards.

There are many new books out this year about Darwin and evolution for young readers. The Curious Mind of Young Darwin is a small (48 pages) yet notable addition because it is a book that investigates nature entirely. It is not about evolution or natural selection specifically, but instead looks at the curiosity that fueled Darwin’s insatiable appetite for knowledge about the natural world. In particular, this book focuses on a young Darwin. Through silly illustrations and a narrative pulled from “letters and stories from Charles Darwin’s childhood,” this book prompts kids to get outside and ask questions about nature. With more than ten activities interspersed with pages describing what Darwin does as a naturalist (in training), The Curious Mind of Young Darwin is fun and instructive. It should be added to the big list of Darwin and evolution books [PDF] prepared by the folks behind Charlie’s Playhouse, and I am happy to have it on my shelf (and plan to use it once my son is a little older).



Thank you to Field Studies Council for sending me a review copy.

Gear for naturalists

Gear for naturalists

 See other images from this book here.

3 thoughts on “BOOK REVIEW: The Curious Mind of Young Darwin

  1. Pingback: We need more imagery of the young Darwin « The Dispersal of Darwin

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