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Boy, Were We Wrong About Dinosaurs! Hardcover – September 22, 2005
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Top Customer Reviews
But the book also is a better example of how science works than it really set out to be: It contains two glaring examples of how, for all the real power of the scientific method and (most) scientists' genuine commitment to objectivity and open-mindedness, science is carried out (and interpreted and written about) by people who are subject, to a greater or lesser extent, to all the biases and assumptions of their day. Those blinders creep into their conclusions far more than they would like to admit.
For example, one of the points that the book makes is that we used to think of dinosaurs as having reptile-like parenting skills--i.e., none; they lay eggs and leave. But then paleontologists found evidence (such as nests with older hatchlings in them) that dinosaurs may have been more active parents.
Except the book doesn't say parents.
It says mothers. Over and over.
I have no need to project egalitarian parenting onto other species, where it often doesn't exist. But since it does exist among birds quite often, I would have been pretty slow to make such a massive assumption and present it as a "discovery."
And in fact, last December a flurry of articles about active dinosaur dads came out--some researchers think in some cases they were the primary parent.
Boy, was the book wrong--not in a scientific way though, in a lazy way.Read more ›
Perhaps you remember that dinosaur report you had to give him when you were a student back in school. You told your classmates all those facts you read about the dinosaurs, only now to discover that many of them have turned out not to be true. Boy were your teachers wrong about the dinosaurs!
But what this book is telling us, and it's a great lesson to take away, is that we all do the best with what we can. Just keep an open mind, remember that science is ongoing proces, and don't be too certain of anything. Perhaps, if we keep these things in mind, we'll someday find out the real truth about the dinosaurs, or something very close to it.
A wonderful, thoughtful, and informative book. It's inpsired me to look into reading some of the author's other relases, such as "Boy, Were We Wrong About the Human Body!"
I was so impressed with this book, I took it with me and checked it out right away. The book explains how when dinosaur fossils were first found, people didn't really know what they were, and so they came up with different explanations, like maybe they were dragon bones. Next, it explains one by one many of the misconceptions that scientists have had over the years and how they were proven wrong. Specifically it mentions that once we thought that dinosaurs all dragged their tails on the ground, but now we believe they held them up when they walked; we used to believe that all dinosaurs were cold blooded but that now we believe that they were warm blooded. We used to think that that were bowlegged, but know we know their legs bent in much the same way that other animals like buffalo or horses do; we used to think that all dinosaurs were scaly, but now we know that many of them had down or feathers.
This book, without meaning to, emphasizes that science and humans don't know everything, but that there is a long process to testing ideas out, and that there is nothing wrong with discarding old beliefs when new discoveries point in a new direction. Most interesting of all, the last pages of the book explain the current belief that modern birds descended from some of the smaller, feathered dinosaurs, and so in a way birds are like living dinosaurs!
The book had beautiful pictures and is short enough for an early reader to get through, but informational enough for even older children to enjoy.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
this purchase.Much better looking an built more solidly than I was expecting. At this price, I considered buying an extra but I don't think I would need it.Published 8 months ago by gabi
This book is an awesome look at how scientific thinking changes over time. It was on the NSTA trade books top 100 list. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Socksrocks
This book was for my 6 year old grandson, who LOVES dinosaurs. I was intrigued by the description, as I want him to read, but to also not take everything he reads as being a fact. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Lynn Spears
This is a great book to read to your primary science class. It gives the history of discovering dinosaurs. I used it in my 3rd grade class.Published on March 7, 2014 by Linda Stidham
My daughter ripped this book in half seconds after it arrived.Published on October 24, 2013 by Hobtic
This is an excellent book, very information and interesting at the same time. I teach second grade and I can not wait to read this book with my class.Published on July 3, 2012 by Teach