Sunday, February 21, 2010

Poisonous Picks

The kiddo has been, for some time now, a little obsessed with deadly solutions and gases and drugs that either kill, hurt, scramble the neurons or interact harmfully with other drugs. It could be one of the reasons why he's a huge fan of Agatha Christie mysteries and watches with much interest every Christie whodunnit DVD we've borrowed from Netflix so far.

I think it's a particularly fascinating topic for him because it is a mix of two of his favorite sciences...chemistry and medicine. Poisonous molecules and the symptoms they induce in man and least I'm hoping that's why it excites him so.

Last week, he suddenly decided he wanted to read even more on the topic of poisons and drugs so we picked up a number of books from our library. Two are actually by his current favorite popular science author, John Emsley.

Here are all the books kiddo wanted, might read or has already read on the topic of poisons, harmful interactions and famous poisoners. I must add that he usually doesn't finish most of these books, flipping through and reading only the pages that satisfy his immediate curiosity. Unfinished reading projects are as common in our home as, as, well, oh you get the idea.


These are a few interesting-looking links I've recently found by googling on the subjects of poisons and household toxins.

ToxMystery from NIH's National Library of Medicine

Poisons Prevention from the NZ National Poisons Centre

Neuroscience for Kids from the University of Washington

Classic Poisons and other articles from BBC. This is an exceptional source for more detailed information. Don't miss the referenced entries links on the right.

There are a number of drugs and alcohol abuse videos at BrainPOP that the kiddo has enjoyed watching. Do note that a subscription may be required to watch more than one video.

And here's a slide presentation (prepared with lots of help from mom) delivered by the man last semester to a local homeschooling group.

 I'd love to have more books and links suggestions if you know of anything we shouldn't miss.


  1. You might take a look at Amy Stewart's latest book. It's a garden book about deadly plants.

  2. Annie, I'm not sure if I've read her books before this and am extremely grateful for your recommendation. Her titles look fabulous!

  3. The Emsley books are now at the top of our Paperback Swap list! My older son's on a serious Chemistry bender right now, deep into his CHEM 3000 set (Christmas present. Have you seen Theo Gray's books ("Mad Science" and "The Elements")? They're favorites around here right now. Thanks for great links and ideas!

  4. You're welcome Sarah! Hope the boys enjoy Emsley as much as kiddo is.

  5. I'll be watching with interest to see where your kiddo ends up in life :)

  6. Kerrie, hopefully not under investigation (or worse) for some crime (aaaack) or some experiment gone horribly wrong. :P


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