Brainy Parenting

By Ken Stoflet, Communications Specialist  

Nonfiction often gets a bad rap as stuffy, boring, and yawn-inducing. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Great nonfiction content can take the form of a thrilling adventure story, a scary tale around a campfire, or an intriguing true story that took place in a different era. Using data from What Kids Are Reading , we’ve gathered ten nonfiction articles that are popular with K–12 students nationwide that you might be surprised are as popular as they are! Enjoy!

Alaska Mom Wants Daughter's Name to Be Awesome

Popular with third, fourth, and fifth graders, a mom in Alaska wants to legally change her daughter’s middle name to “Awesome”.

Harp Player Soothes Apes at Zoo

An elementary school favorite, Terri Tacheny explains why apes at the Como Zoo enjoy the harp and how they react.

“Combing” Through Light May Produce a Faster, More Powerful Internet



Wouldn’t it be nice to have a faster WiFi connection? Popular with high school students, this article explores how people are working together to create a faster, more powerful Internet.

Get Ready for Snack Bars Made from Bugs

Would you be comfortable eating insects? This article dives into Exo bars and how they’re made from crickets.

Bigfoot Hair Samples Mostly from Bears

Bigfoot continues to spark curiosity. This article details the recent testing of hair found in forests that were argued to be from Bigfoot.

Monkeys Take Selfies, Creating Copyright Dispute

What do you do when a monkey takes a selfie with your camera? Photographer David Slater and Wikimedia Foundation took it to court, unsure of who owned the rights to the bizarre photo.

Here’s a Water Bottle You Can Actually Eat

Popular with high school students, this article explores the possibility of eliminating plastic water bottles with new research on spherification.

Government Wants to Make Cars Talk to Each Other

A highly-read article by new and soon-to-be drivers, this article outlines safety technology the government is hoping car manufactures make standard.

Can This Toilet Save Millions of Lives?

More than 2.5 million people don’t have access to clean water. Knowing this, teams set out to design a toilet that doesn’t use water.

Eating Insects Is Good for You and the World

Should we eat more insects and less red meat? This article weighs the pros and cons.

Curious to see more? Explore the top books and articles read by grade, data-driven insights and analyses on student reading practice, and author commentary from Tedd Arnold, Melba Pattillo Beals, and Laura Numeroff in this year’s What Kids Are Reading report.



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