In honor of International Day of Women and Girls in Science this year, we got a big stack of picture books about female scientists from th...

'The Leaf Detective' - Read and Rise March 2020


In honor of International Day of Women and Girls in Science this year, we got a big stack of picture books about female scientists from the library. Out 14 amazing women, I had only heard of 2 of them! One of the new scientists I was introduced to was Dr. Meg Lowman. Her story is amazing! She was the first person to actually climb up into the rainforest canopy to study wildlife and helped create canopy walkways so more people could study and experience the wonder of the canopy!

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Activity: One of the things Dr. Lowman did to help preserve rainforests was to teach people living in and around rainforests how to utilize what the rainforest gave them instead of cutting them down to make room for farmlands and such. Read some Rainforest Facts with your children to discover just how much rainforests give us! A couple of years ago, Lil C made a rainforest layers diorama and did a presentation on the rainforest in her 4H Club. 

As part of her presentation, Lil C made rainforest cookies using ingredients that grow in the rainforest and shared them with the other club members. She used: bananas, coconut, cinnamon, vanilla, chocolate, cashews, and honey. You can make your own rainforest cookies too using the recipe below! (These cookies are pretty healthy, but if you want to cut down the sugar even more feel free to leave out the honey, they don't really need it!)

Rainforest Cookies:

1. Combine 1 banana, 1 cup quick oats, 1 tablespoon honey, and 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil in a large bowl. Let rest 10 minutes so the oats can absorb some of the moisture.

2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

3. Add a pinch of salt, sprinkle of cinnamon, and a splash of vanilla to your oat mixture. Then add in some shredded coconut, mini chocolate chips, and chopped cashews. I don't have precise measurements, the kids just added a big pinch of each.

4. Scoop the cookie dough and gently press it into a ball shape with your hands. (This can be tricky for kids because if they squeeze too hard, their cookie will crumble. But it's also good practice for controlling the pressure they apply.) Place the dough ball on the cookie sheet and gently flatten the cookie with your palm. Continue until you use all the dough. We got a dozen ~2" cookies.

5. Bake the cookies for about 15 minutes. Cookies will be lightly browned and firm when done. 

6. If you don't eat them all the day you make them, store in an airtight container in the fridge. I think they taste best the next day when they're warmed back up a bit in the toaster oven! 

Random fact - we also made a simpler version of these cookies using just banana, oats, and chopped walnuts and gave them to our pet rats and backyard squirrels as a special treat!