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Classroom Plays for Social Studies, Science, Women's History and more!


   * Written by L.E. McCullough, Ph.D.

   * ISBN: 1-57525-113-2

   * Retail List Price: $17.00 (check online retailers for other prices)


Plays of Exploration and Discovery celebrates the visionary men and women throughout history whose dedication and courage in conquering the frontiers of science, medicine and geography helped shape our modern world.


These 12 original plays present action-filled, idea-packed scenes depicting epic moments of discovery by Nicholas Copernicus, Edward Jenner, Marie Curie, Benjamin Franklin, Nellie Bly, Stephanie Kwolek, Hypatia, Florence Nightingale, George Washington Carver, Maria Sibylla Merian, Isaac Newton, Amerigo Vespucci, Grace Hopper and more.


Plays of Exploration and Discovery opens new vistas of excitement for young explorers in your school and home!


1. Mothers and Daughters of Invention: 4,000 Years of Women in Science. Throughout history, women have been responsible for many important scientific discoveries and have devised numerous practical inventions to make our world a safer, healthier, happier place to live. This play details contributions of notable women scientists from Hypatia of Alexandria and Lady Augusta Lovelace (inventor of the first computing machine) to Nobel Prize winners physicist Madame Curie and geneticist Barbara McClintock.


2. Counting, from Quipu to Googol. Delve into the history of mathematical thought and counting systems from ancient times to present featuring Pascal, Babbage, Aryabhata (inventor of zero), Al-Khwarizmi and other famous number-crunchers.

3. "Constellations Then Arise": Astronomy in the Age of Copernicus. 16th-century Polish astronomer Nicholaus Copernicus (1473-1543) set forth a new way of looking at the universe that would change science forever. His ideas were not welcomed by the scientific establishment of his day, however; this play dramatizes his struggle to publish his ground-breaking work against heated opposition.


4. Around the World with Nellie Bly. Journalist Nellie Bly (1865-1922) was a trailblazing reporter who wrote about issues not often discussed in newspapers of the day: the impact of social, political and economic policies on working women and children. In 1889-90 she journeyed across the globe to see if she could match the fictional record held by a character in Jules Verne's book, Around the World in Eighty Days. After making the trip in seventy-two days, Nellie Bly became the most famous woman in the world — follow her amazing trip!


5. Marking Time: Clocks and Calendars through the Centuries. Explore the mystery of the Fourth Dimension — Time, and humanity's efforts over the last several thousand years to capture the endless flow of time in clocks and calendars, sundials and digital watches.


6. Isaac Newton's Poetry of the Rainbow. The discoveries of English astronomer, mathematician and philosopher Isaac Newton (1642-1727) helped put scientific inquiry on a practical footing leading to breakthroughs in many fields. This play follows his career from a poor rural plowboy to a world-renowned hero of science.


7. Naming the Unnamed: The Strange Saga of Amerigo Vespucci. If Christopher Columbus was the first European to discover the Western Hemisphere, why isn't America called Columbia? The answer lies in the curious and intriguing adventures of another Italian explorer and friend of Columbus, Amerigo Vespucci (1454-1512).


8. Everyday Science in Ben Franklin's America. Benjamin Franklin (1706-90) was an extraordinary scientist and thinker who did much to promote science in Colonial America. Have a front-row seat at a meeting of the American Philosophical Society that concludes with an actual experiment from Franklin's book Experiments and Observations on Electricity!


9. Lady of the Lamp: Florence Nightingale, Founder of Modern Nursing. In the midst of a ferocious war, English nurse Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) revolutionized hospital methods that saved thousands of lives and laid the foundations for modern nursing and health care.


10. Edward Jenner and the Gossip of Dairymaids. Edward Jenner (1749-1823) was an English country physician who established the initial concepts of preventive medicine by using vaccination to ward off disease. Witness the breakthrough moments in his search for a weapon to fight the terrible scourge of smallpox.


11. Anthropology, The Science of Us. Learn how anthropology studies the "human animal" and the incredibly complex collection of ideas, practices, rituals, behavior patterns and activities that make up human culture, from how we organize our families and schools to how we display emotion at sports events and funerals.


12. Geegaws and Doohickeys: Indispensable Inventions and Their Forgotten Inventors. Much of what we take for granted in our daily life - from microchips to crayons, from plastic to penicillin - resulted from unplanned experiments or even accidents in the laboratory. This play tells the stories behind the invention of the zipper, computer mouse, velcro, car radio, microwave oven, gas mask, traffic light, skateboard and more!

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