What do we do?
Frontiers for Young Minds believes that the best way to make cutting-edge science discoveries available to younger audiences is to enable young people and scientists to work together to create articles that are both accurate and exciting.
That is why distinguished scientists are invited to write about their cutting-edge discoveries in a language that is accessible for young readers, and it is then up to the kids themselves – with the help of a science mentor – to provide feedback and explain to the authors how to best improve the articles before publication.
As a result, Frontiers for Young Minds provides a collection of freely available scientific articles by distinguished scientists that are shaped for younger audiences by the input of their own young peers. Even before the publication of our first 50 articles, the quality of Frontiers for Young Minds was recognized as one of the American Library Association’s 2014 Great Websites for Kids.
How does it work?
What can you find?
We publish articles that are either about new research on the cutting edge (New Discovery) or explain a key idea that is fundamental for understanding a scientific field (Core Concept). We are still expanding into new subject areas, but you can find articles in the following areas right now:
Biology is the study of life, and what could be more important than that? When scientists study the variety of that life – called biodiversity – they can use tools from ecology, evolution, conservation, genetics, and even the management of our natural resources. They find and describe new species, explore uncharted ecosystems, study how and why species change, investigate patterns in where and when species live, and study processes that make it possible for an ecosystem to survive or thrive. This section of Frontiers for Young Minds will include articles that describe, explore, and explain biological diversity on Earth – past, present, and future. From paleontology to botany to zoology (all animals big and small, from elephants to microbes), articles will address how living things adapt, change, and use or influence each other. Understanding Biodiversity wants to provide an opportunity for the next generation to understand the processes that have helped create this biological diversity, so that they are prepared to protect and sustain a biodiverse planet into the future.
Math is the language of the universe. It is how we use logical reasoning to explain big ideas like symmetry, chaos, infinity, change, and truth. Some mathematicians study patterns for their own sake: often even the simplest problems can reveal beautiful and unexpected structures in the universe. Other mathematicians study how these patterns enable us to better understand other fields, ranging from physics to economics, neuroscience to astronomy, meteorology to music. This section of Frontiers for Young Minds will include articles from all areas of pure and applied mathematics, covering fundamental ideas, cutting-edge advances, and a broad range of applications. Understanding Mathematics wants to communicate to the next generation that mathematics is not only essential for describing the real world, but is also accessible to everyone and is an amazing natural source of beauty in its own right.
Who can get involved?
Frontiers for Young Minds depends on the excitement and involvement from across the spectrum of science lovers for its success – from kids and teens to young scientists and experienced researchers.
Kids and teens between the ages of 8-15 work with their classrooms or friends to provide feedback to the authors about how to make the best-possible articles for readers their own age, with the help of their Science Mentor.
Young (or young at heart) researchers with experience in the peer review process introduce their Young Reviewers to the idea of a life in science, the basics of science publishing, and encourage them to provide the authors with an honest and constructive review.
Recognized experts who build teams of Associate Editors, provide an initial check on all new submissions, and make sure that each manuscript ends up in the right hands.
Experienced researchers who build teams of Science Mentors, oversee the review process to make sure all of the Young Reviewer feedback is put into place, and keep an eye out for new discoveries that would be interesting or important for young readers.
Publishers, journals, and research societies who support the Frontiers for Young Minds mission and suggest recent articles from their publications to be turned into Young Minds versions.