Ada Twist, Scientist

Last updated Friday, November 2, 2018

Author: Andrea Beaty
Illustrator: David Roberts
Date of Publication: 2016
ISBN: 1419721372
Grade Level: 2nd    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Nov. 2018

Synopsis: Scientist Ada, a character of color, has a boundless imagination and has always been hopelessly curious. Why are there pointy things stuck to a rose? Why are there hairs growing inside your nose? When her house fills with a horrific, toe-curling smell, Ada knows it’s up to her to find the source. What would you do with a problem like this? Not afraid of failure, Ada embarks on a fact-finding mission and conducts scientific experiments, all in the name of discovery. But, this time, her experiments lead to even more stink and get her into trouble!

Inspired by real-life makers such as Ada Lovelace and Marie Curie, Ada Twist, Scientist champions girl power and women scientists, and brings welcome diversity to picture books about girls in science. Touching on themes of never giving up and problem solving, Ada comes to learn that her questions might not always lead to answers, but rather to more questions. She may never find the source of the stink, but with a supportive family and the space to figure it out, she’ll be able to feed her curiosity in the ways a young scientist should.

Note to readers:
•  Today is also College Spirit Day, so please talk to your group about college, share your college stories, and ask them what they think about college!
•  You can do a picture walk before reading.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Is there one thing/subject/topic that you love more than anything?
•  What do you do when you are curious about something?
•  Would you like to be a scientist when you grow up?


•  Wake - what is left behind by someone or something
•  Research - careful study that is done to find and report new knowledge about something
•  Chaos - complete confusion and disorder
•  Pungent - having a strong, sharp taste or smell
•  Hypothesis - an idea or theory that is not proven but that leads to further study or discussion
•  Queried - a question or a request for information about something

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  What age was Ada when she spoke for the first time?
•  What was Ada's first question?
•  What was Ada trying to find the answer to with her first experiments?
•  Did Ada find her answer?

Craft ideas:
•  Make a science journal, using graph paper or lined paper. Encourage kids to divide up pages in sections with questions (How?, What?, When?) and fill out with answers or observations.
•  Draw a picture of Ada's cat.
•  Check our craft ideas on Pinterest!

*Note: These craft ideas are just suggestions. You can use them, but you don’t have to use them. You can expand upon them, or add your own twist. Remember, though, that the focus of your time should not be on the development and execution of a craft; the focus should be on the read-aloud and the enjoyment of the book!