The Balkin Buddies Blog Catherine Balkin's Facebook



Vicki Cobb is the well-known author of more than eighty highly entertaining nonfiction books for children. Ever since 1972, when HarperCollins first published Science Experiments You Can Eat , Cobb's lighthearted approach to hands-on science has become her trademark for getting kids involved in experiences that create real learning. Currently, she is becoming increasingly popular as a speaker to children and adults as educators search out sources for materials and activities that promote learning. Today's popular buzz words in education -- "whole language," "hands-on-science," "experimental learning," "out-come based," "multi-disciplinary," and “critical thinking" -- are embodied in Vicki Cobb's work.


Vicki Cobb credits her outlook on education to her mother's forward-looking thinking. From kindergarten to sixth grade she attended The Little Red School House in Greenwich Village. Her early education was a joyful experience of hands-on activities, field trips, reading children's literature (not textbooks), creative projects, and a kind of portfolio evaluation that today's educators realize are the most powerful tools for producing individuals who have a lifetime love of learning. According to Cobb, her books "allow me to recreate the joy of learning I experienced in elementary school for myself, forever."


Vicki Cobb graduated from Barnard College with a major in zoology and went on to get a Master's degree in Secondary Science Education. After early careers as a laboratory researcher and science teacher, she became a full-time writer of science books for children. Light Action! Amazing Experiments in Optics represents her life as both author and parent. Her coauthor was her son Josh, and her optical engineer and the illustrator was her son Theo, an artist and art director.


Vicki's book, I Face the Wind , was a 2004 ALA Robert F. Sibert Informational Honor Book. Also, in 2004, Vicki began writing a weekly column for teachers called Show Biz Science on the

website. It is free and teachers are encouraged to sign up for it.


For her book, We Dare You!, written with Kathy Darlin, Vicki made videos of her own grandchildren doing tricks form the book. For a preview of the introduction, go to .

Furthermore, Vicki is the recipient of an AAAS/Subaru Science Books & Film (SB&F) Prize, which honors authors whose books promoted science literacy.