“Why doesn’t Dr. Scott ever win a Nobel Prize?”

Dr. Scott Sampson, Ph.D (Photo via ScottSampson.net)

Dr. Scott Sampson, Ph.D (Photo via ScottSampson.net)

Every December when the Nobel Prizes are handed out, The Eight-Year-Old waits with baited breath to find out whether Dr. Scott Sampson of Dinosaur Train fame has finally been recognized as the outstanding scientist he is.

Every year, she’s disappointed.

“Mommyo, why doesn’t Dr. Scott ever win the Nobel Prize?”

The answer is so simple, I have resisted turning it into a Caterpickle for years. But the question keeps coming up, so I’d like to have something in print to refer The Eight-Year-Old to. (She trusts that Caterpickles lady more than me.)

Quite simply, there is no Nobel Prize for paleontology or any other branch of natural history. Until that changes, Dr. Scott and all of The Eight-Year-Old’s other paleontological heroes will continue to be shunned by the Nobel Prize Committee.

“That’s not fair, Mommyo.”

Perhaps not, but Dr. Scott did win the 2013 Geological Society of America Public Service Award for his work bringing the wonder of science to millions of kids (and their parents), which is pretty awesome too. A belated, but heartfelt congratulations to you, Dr. Scott from your fans at Caterpickles.

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About Shala Howell

I spent two decades helping companies like Bell Labs, Juniper Networks, and a genetic testing company that was later acquired by CVS translate some of the world’s most complicated concepts into actionable, understandable English. Now I'm working on a much harder problem -- fostering children’s curiosity and engagement in the scientific, artistic, and linguistic world that surrounds them. The first book in my Caterpickles Parenting Series, What’s That, Mom?, focuses on how to use public art to nurture children’s curiosity in the world around them. My next book will focus on science, and how parents without a science degree can answer their curious child's questions without enrolling in a college level refresher course. In the meantime, you can find me blogging about life with a very curious Eleven-Year-Old at Caterpickles.com, chatting about books and the writing life at BostonWriters.blog, and tweeting about books, writing, science, & things that make me smile at @shalahowell.
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