Citizen Science Anyone Can Do at Home

For many kids and teens, summer is a time for traveling and expanding their knowledge of the world. For some it’s also about doing something helpful for their communities, getting involved in volunteer projects. But with travel restrictions and in-person volunteering opportunities limited, Summer 2020 is going to be different. Not to worry — there are still many opportunities to benefit the greater world and learn in the process, by participating in citizen science!

As citizen scientists, kids can play games and earn points for contributions toward scientific research, all from the safety of home. They can pass the time knowing that they aren’t just “passing time” but actually furthering a good cause, like studying wildlife in remote regions of the globe, tracking climate change, learning about distant galaxies, discovering underlying signals of diseases like Alzheimer’s, or helping researchers design new models for proteins to bind to viruses like Covid-19.

So last month Pasadena Public Library gave two webinars highlighting some of our favorite citizen science projects. These are projects that offer learning opportunities, fun, and enrichment, and most of them are kid-friendly and easy to do. Click on each slide to go to that citizen science project’s website.

AnnMarie Kolakowski

I'm a youth services librarian currently working at the Lamanda Park Branch Library while Central Library is closed for seismic repairs. I purchase juvenile fiction for grades 2-8, and some foreign languages. I do a lot of programs with school-age kids, including 3 regular book clubs (Windows and Mirrors, Read Around the World, and Lucha Libros), as well as writing workshops and STEAM/science programs. I also Infant/Toddler Storytimes and Preschool Storytimes, and outreach to local area preschools. I love what I do, working with kids of all ages to inspire them to learn and use their curiosity and imaginations. Outside of my work at the library, I am also the author of a book on creative writing activities for kids.

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