Book 2: E-I-E-I-Uh Oh


Photo of hand water pumpWith a moo moo here, And a moo moo there, Here a moo, there a moo, Everywhere a moo moo. “Mom, will there be cows and pigs and chickens on the farm?” Home gardening isn’t quite as interesting toLettuce seedlings Melody as the anticipation of getting up close and personal to cows and chickens and pigs. Her seven-year-old twin brother feels the same way. Waiting patiently for seeds to become yummy vegetables is not part of Mallory’s nature, and even waiting for lettuce seedlings to grow into salad material is too long. Better to dream about an adventure that’s only a week away. With an oink oink here, and an oink oink there, Here an oink…

Our main focus of BioFables is on illuminating Science (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) principles through entertaining stories. However, Science knowledge and, especially, applying Science  in the real world requires a balancing Humanities and one’s internal Values/Behaviors perspective.

Why do we call these stealth mini-lessons? Not all the lessons are in stealth mode, of course. Especially in the Science category. Learning about the properties of dry ice, say, will likely come from observing how it keeps your picnic food cold without melting into water. But a lot of the instances of Humanities and Values learning happen in the course of common experiences in E-I-E-I-Uh Oh where they could easily be missed.

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E-I-E-I Uh Oh Resources

Homeschoolers and devoted parents everywhere are now able to discover the wealth of practical knowledge within the pages of E-I-E-I Uh Oh. This practical knowledge will enable you to help young Whoosh readers grasp more fully the mini-lessons that you believe are important to reinforce. We’ve selected seventy (of more than 100) mini-lessons woven throughout E-I-E-I Uh Oh. They are incorporated  into four lists and their related tables:

  1. Science
  2. Humanities
  3. Values/Behaviors
  4. Combination (identified by chapter)

The fourth table, especially, will help you identify quickly in which chapter a particular mini-lesson occurs.

NOTE: Please be aware that branches and sub-branches are unique to each book and do not necessarily reflect terminology that may be commonly used elsewhere. In addition, the following lists and tables do not represent a complete list of Science, Humanities and Values categories.

E-I-E-I Uh Oh Science Gateway

This at-a-glance bulleted list offers a quick look at the Science Discovery Paths in bold, followed by their Knowledge Branches appearing in E-I-E-I Uh Oh.

  • Biology: Microbes/Bacteria; Plants; Animals; People
  • Chemistry: Molecules; Elements; Forms; Functions
  • Physics: Mechanics; Heat and Temperature
  • Earth, Space Science: Astronomy; Geography; Geology; Environment
  • Math: Symbols; Software
  • Technology: Physics (Mechanics)
  • Engineering: Math (Software)

The left column of E-I-E-I Uh Oh Table 1 , below, highlights the major Science Discovery Paths (light green background.) Each Discovery Path has one or more associated Knowledge Branch. Sub-branches, where they occur, appear indented below the major Knowledge Branch. These sub-branches (and sometimes sub-sub-branches) are divisions  of the major Knowledge Branch; they represent increasingly-specific fields within its Knowledge Branch.

The right column offers brief definitions of each Discovery Path, and Knowledge Nuggets or Pop-up Lessons for each Knowledge Branch and sub-branch.

E-I-E-I-Uh Oh TABLE 1: Science Content
Knowledge Branches
Knowledge Nuggets; Pop-up Lessons
BIOLOGY Life and living things
Microbes/Bacteria Soil bacteria: used in antibiotics, cause of “after-rain” smell
Extremophiles: could a little boy be an extremophile?
Plants Planting a vegetable garden
Animals It’s 4:30 AM. Time to milk the cows! Cow eyes, sausage ingredients
People Declining eyesight: Often due to aging
CHEMISTRY Substances, their structure, behavior, interactions
Elements Hydrogen fuel: not as scary as it sounds
Molecules Water: liquid that all of biology needs to live; comes from rain, groundwater
Forms Dry ice is carbon dioxide in solid form; it doesn’t melt, but sublimes (goes from solid to gas form)
Functions pH: Chemical condition of a solution, from 0 to 14 (H2O = 7, neutral)
PHYSICS Properties and nature of matter and energy
Mechanics Suction (partial vacuum) raises water to a higher level
Heat, Temperature How cold is cold? Temperature of “dry ice”
Low temperature alert! Bare skin can stick to cold surfaces
Related to planet Earth and beyond
Astronomy Above Earth: space, planets and stars, the universe
     Stars, planets  Telling time by movement of stars in the sky
Geography Continents, countries, oceans and other waters, and their features
     Farming Experiencing first-hand how a farm family practices agriculture (a fancy word for growing crops and raising animals for food)
     Climate zones Areas of the world defined by temperature and precipitation
Geology Earth’s physical structure, substance, history, processes
     Groundwater Walk on a water table: underground water held in a layer of porous rock or other materials, called an aquifer
     Geysers  Impact on groundwater depends on rain, rivers, other natural ways of replenishing eruption of water
Environment  Physical, chemical and biological conditions that  impact people, animals, plants and microbes
Reducing harmful substances in cars: clean fuel
MATH Numbers, quantities and analysis
Symbols Marks take a lot less space than writing “greater than” and “less than”
Software “Fuzzy logic” software is used in many products we use very day
TECHNOLOGY Tools (products) and techniques using science
Physics: Mechanics Get water out of the ground with a hand pump
ENGINEERING Application of technology
Math: Software engineering
Using computer science to improve or fix problems arising from programs and other information used by computers

E-I-E-I-Uh Oh Humanities Gateway

The at-a-glance bulleted list below offers a quick look at the Humanities Discovery Paths  in bold, followed by their  Knowledge Branches appearing in E-I-E-I Uh Oh.

Humanities Discovery Paths and Knowledge Branches E-I-Uh Oh:

  • Society: Family Relationships; People Relationships; Farming Life
  • Language: Word Derivations; Traditional Sayings
  • Health: Exercise, Agility; Physical; Aging
  • Arts: Writing; Play on Words; Story Telling; Drawing; Singing, Music; Creating, Building Things
  • Life Skills: Gardening, Growing Thigs; Outdoors; Food; Mental Shortcuts; Household; Technology in its Place
  • Work, Careers: Farmer; Food Chemist; Air Force Pilot (retired); Butcher

The left column of  E-I-E-I Uh Oh Table 2, below, highlights the major Humanities Discovery Paths (light green background.) Each Discovery Path has one or more associated Knowledge Branch. Sub-branches, where they occur, appear indented below the major Knowledge Branch. These sub-branches (and sometimes sub-sub-branches) are divisions  of the major Knowledge Branch; they represent increasingly-specific fields within its Knowledge Branch.

The right column offers brief definitions of each Discovery Path, and Knowledge Nuggets or Pop-up Lessons for each Knowledge Branch and sub-branch.

E-I-E-I-Uh Oh TABLE 2: Humanities Gateway
Knowledge Branches
Knowledge Nuggets; Pop-Up Lessons
Community, Cluture, and People
Family Relationships
Mom calls Grandpa Dad, even though he’s her husband’s father (affectionate terms of address)
Twins call Mom’s cousin and his wife uncle and aunt as terms of respect (polite terms of address with extended family)
How to read a family tree diagram
Everyone shares in doing household chores
Social Relationships
Twins call local butcher Mr. Jake (polite terms of address with elders)
Farming Life
Need to get up early to milk the cows
Robust farm-style midday meal, much from the “kitchen garden”
LANGUAGE Means of communication
Word Derivations Carpe diem: (Latin) seize the day, or “don’t let a good opportunity get away”
Aquifer: (Latin) aqui water and fer bearing, so water-bearing (rock or other material)
Traditional Sayings “Red sky in the morning…Red sky at night…”
“Star light, star bright, First star I see tonight…”
HEALTH Level of well-being
Exercise, Agility Taking breaks on a long car trip
You’ve got to be quick to catch a chicken for dinner
Physical A day in the fresh air and sleepiness seem to go together
Short daytime naps help drowsiness from an early wake time
Aging Poor eyesight from cataracts, other conditions
ARTS Creative skills and their expression
Writing Dad composes a poem on the farm’s dark, star-splashed sky
Play on Words Understanding the big picture of the night sky
Story Telling What does a pail of milk have to do with the Milky Way?
Drawing Mallory shows Uncle Frank his drawing on how a geyser works
Uncle Frank shows how an aquifer is like a big sponge that holds water
Singing, Music What do “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” and “Baa, Baa Black Sheep” have in common?
Creating, Building Things Creating a star map with stones and string
Taking a photo to preserve a memory
LIFE SKILLS Practical abilities for attending to everyday needs
Gardening, Growing Things Understanding plant life cycles (and patience) to nutrition, and exercise to saving money and a whole lot more benefits
Outdoors Discovering that the bacteria in the soil causes that “after rain smell” and learning of their uses in food and antibiotics
Making a fire for cooking
Red sunrise sky: (rain…or wildfires in the west?)
Telling time (and bedtime?) by the stars
Food Collecting eggs without upsetting the chickens, keeping eggs cool to avoid spoiling
Catching, preparing chicken for cooking
How to milk a cow
Making breakfast crepes
Mental Shortcuts Estimating, using rules of thumb and written symbols such as > (greater than) and < (less than) come in handy when you don’t need to be exact
Household Organizing, putting things in their proper place
Technology in its Place Foregoing apps to exercse mental agility
Observing and learning from nature rather than from a screen
Productive activity to earn an income or give back to society
Farmer Uncle Frank and Aunt Martha share their rural life with the Maloneys
Food Chemist Dad explains that “dry ice” is colder than ice made from water
Air Force Pilot (retired) Grandpa’s quick reflexes reflect his skills as a pilot
Butcher Mr. Jake’s gift of cow eyeballs delights Mallory, makes Melody queasy

E-I-E-I-Uh Oh Values/Behaviors Gateway

The at-a-glance bulleted list below offers a quick look at the Values branches in bold, followed by their sub-branches appearing in E-I-E-I Uh Oh.

Values Branches and sub-branches in E-I-E-I-Uh Oh:

  • Morals/Ethics: Honesty/Truth; Family Loyalty
  • Emotions: Sense of Humor; Anticipation; Patience; Self-Satisfaction; Concern for Others; Serenity
  • Mind: Calmly Assessing a Situation; Intuition
  • Body: Healthy Aging; Balance/Stability
  • Learning/Knowledge/Skills: Acquiring Knowledge; Sharing Knowledge
  • People: Respect; Generosity; Helping with Chores; Friendly Atmosphere; Hospitality
  • Planet: Research; Pollution; Reduce, Re-Use, Recycle

The left column of E-I-E-I Uh Oh Table 3, below, highlights the major Values/Behaviors Discovery Paths (light green background.) Each Discovery Path has one or more associated Knowledge Branch. Sub-branches, where they occur, appear indented below the major Knowledge Branch. These sub-branches (and sometimes sub-sub-branches) are divisions  of the major Knowledge Branch; they represent increasingly-specific fields within its Knowledge Branch.

The right column offers brief definitions of each Discovery Path, and Knowledge Nuggets or Pop-up Lessons for each Knowledge Branch and sub-branch.

E-I-E-I-Uh Oh TABLE 3: Values/Behaviors Content


Internal character, beliefs
Honesty/Truth Mallory sneaks into a really cold situation
Melody pretends she doesn’t know where her brother went
The twins worry that Mr. Jake knows about Mallory’s sneaking into the meat locker
Family Loyalty Melody doesn’t snitch on her brother’s rash behavior
EMOTIONS Feelings, sentiment, intuition
Sense of Humor Melody seizes a fun opportunity as she milks a cow
Mallory enjoys Grandpa’s “remains to be seen” comment about getting his eyes tested
Anticipation Mallory loves food, excited about seeds growing to edibles
Patience “You IDGIT!” Melody uses a parent-friendly term of frustration with her brother
Self-Satisfaction Mallory is proud to remember the name of the chemical inside the brown bottle under the sink
Concern for Others Grandpa wonders about Melody’s rare resistance to heat
Grandpa reluctantly awakens the twins at 4 am to watch the cows being milked
Serenity Grandpa reminds Mallory that some things are meant to be temporary
MIND Rational, theoretical, analytical thinking
Calmly Assessing a Situation Mallory doesn’t lose his “cool” in the cold, dark meat locker
Intuition Mallory figures out how to look at the “big picture”
BODY Health, bodily strengh and movement
Healthy Aging Grandpa Mike realizes that his aging body limits his time with his grandchildren
Balance/Stability One thing Mallory seems to lack
Pursuit and acquisition of understanding, wisdom, capabilities
Acquiring Knowledge Want to get the most out of your planned veggie garden? Read the seed package labels!
Uncle Frank is curious about fuel cell cars
Sharing Knowledge Adults and children tell each other what they’ve learned
Uncle Frank demonstrates the wonders of a hand water pump
Uncle Frank points out some wonders of the night sky
PEOPLE Regard for, and relationships with, humankind
Respect Melody and Mallory learn to address Mom’s cousin Frank Uncle and his wife Martha as Aunt 
Wet feathers may be “icky” but baked chicken is yummy
The Maloneys honor family war heros at the local cemetary on Memorial Day
Mom chides Mallory for teasing Grandpa
Generosity; Respect Carefully-selected gifts delight the farm family hosts
Helping with Chores Maloneys all pitch in at the family farm, demonstrating that “Many hands make light work”
Uncle Frank makes Sunday breakfast crêpes
Friendly Atmosphere The twins sense the kindness of the burley butcher
Hospitality Aunt Martha invites the twins to spend several weeks on the farm to learn and to help out
PLANET Earth’s natural environment: living organisms, water, surface, subsurface, atmosphere
Research How can hydrogen make the traditional road trip less polluting?
Dad reports on his road trip observations with the experimental car
Pollution New technology makes road trips more friendly to the environment
Light pollution doesn’t hide the stars on the farm
Car pollution involves more than just fuel
Reduce, Re-use, Recycle Mom packs reusable utensils, wash cloths for the roadside picnic lunch on the way home


E-I-E-I-Uh Oh Knowledge Gateways, Combined

You can use E-I-E-I-Uh Oh LIST 4 to decide which mini-lessons and bits of wisdom you would like to reinforce as your child or children read this first book of the BioFables series. We’ve grouped each of the categories into Basic (foundational knowledge), Hybrid (relevant to Basic and Applied Discovery Paths), and Applied (using basic or hybrid principles for practical, real-world purposes).

E-I-E-I-Uh Oh LIST 4: Combined Science, Humanities and Values/Behaviors

Major Branches and Sub-branches Appearing in E-I-E-I-Uh Oh



  • Biology
    • Microbes/Bacteria
    • Plants
    • Animals
    • People
  • Chemistry
    • Molecules
    • Elements
    • Forms
    • Functions
  • Physics
    • Mechanics
    • Heat, Temperature
  • Earth, Space Science
    • Astronomy
    • Geography
    • Geology
    • Environment


  • Math
    • Symbols
    • Software


  • Technolgy
    • Physics (Mechanics)
  • Engineering
    • Math (Software)


  • Society
    • Family Relationships
    • People Relationships
    • Farming Life
  • Language
    • Word Derivations
    • Traditional Sayings
  • Health
    • Exercise
    • Agility
    • Physical
    • Aging


  • Arts
    • Writing
    • Play on Words
    • Story Telling
    • Drawing
    • Singing, Music
    • Creating, Building Things


  • Life Skills
    • Gardening
    • Growing Things
    • Outdoors
    • Food
    • Mental Shortcuts
    • Household
    • Technology in its Place
  • Work/Careers; Role Models

    • Farmer
    • Food Chemist
    • Air Force Pilot
    • Butcher


  • Morals/Ethics
    • Honesty/Truth
    • Family Loyalty
  • Emotions
    • Sense of Humor
    • Anticipation
    • Patience
    • Self-Satisfaction
    • Concern for Others
    • Serenity
  • Mind
    • Calmly Assessing a Situation
    • Intuition
  • Body
    • Healthy Aging
    • Balance/Stability


  • Learning/Knowledge/Skills
    • Aquiring Knowledge
    • Sharing Knowledge


  • People
    • Respect
    • Generosity
    • Helping with Chores
    • Friendly Atmosphere
    • Hospitality
  • Planet
    • Research
    • Pollution
    • Reduce, Re-Use, Recycle

E-I-E-I-Uh Oh TABLE 4 is designed to be helpful in discussing each book as your children progress through the chapters.

The left column rows highlighted in light green show the Chapter number and the chapter’s pages; following the highlighted row is a quick chapter overview and occasional resource links to relevant sites for further investigation (links to child-friendly sites are in orange).

The right column rows highlighted in light green show the chapter’s title; following the highlighted row are the chapter’s color-coded Discovery Paths and their associated Knowledge Branches.

E-I-E-I-Uh Oh TABLE 4: Science, Humanities, Values Content
CHAPTER: Page Numbers
Brief Chapter Description; Resource Links Discovery Paths; Knowledge Branches
Helpful Hints
  • Earth, Space Science
    • Environment
  • Society
    • Family relationships
Chapter 1: Pages 1-5
And Lettuce Seeds All in a Row

Family trees and gardens grow a lot quieter than Yellowstone’s whooshing geysers, but all of them are natural wonders.

Equal, Less than, Greater than, Symbols

  • Math
    • Symbols
  • Society
    • Family relationships
  • Life Skills
    • Gardening
  • Work/Careers; Role Models
    • Farming
Chapter 2: Pages 6-9 A Car of the Future?

Even Rufus (woof) gets to go on a 300-mile test drive of an experimental “clean air” car while the rest of the Maloney family learn about the fuel cells that power it.

    • Chemistry
      • Molecules
      • Elements
    • Earth, Space Science
      • Environment
Chapter 3: Pages 10-15 Down to Earth

Seven-year-old Melody and Mallory explain to Aunt Martha what they learned about pH at Yellowstone, while Uncle Frank reveals what causes that nice “after-rain” smell.

How Fuzzy Logic Rice Cookers Work

Testing pH of Soil Using Kitchen Ingredients

    • Biology
      • Microbes/Bacteria
      • Animals
      • People
    • Chemistry
      • Functions
    • Values/Behaviors
      • People
Chapter 4: Pages 16-22 Brrr!

Mallory loves the cold, but getting trapped inside an icy meat locker? Could he be a cold-loving “extremophile” (on the other extreme that his sister discovered at Yellowstone?

Why Does Skin Stick to Cold Things?

    • Biology
      • Animals
    • Physics
      • Mechanics
    • Life Skills
      • Calm Reasoning
      • Gardening
    • Morals/Ethics
      • Family Loyalty
Chapter 5: Pages 23-29
A Chicken in Every Pot
Mallory and Melody learn first-hand how chicken dinners start with catching chickens, not with a trip to the grocery store. And that you can pump water out of the ground instead of turning on a faucet.

What Is the Water Table?
How Does a Hand Pump Work?
Plant Hardiness Zones
How to Pluck a Chicken

    • Biology
      • Animals
    • Physics
      • Mechanics
    • Earth, Space Science
      • Geology
      • Geography
    • Language
      • Word Derivations
    • Life Skills
      • Food, Cooking
      • Outdoor
Chapter 6: Pages 30-37 A Farm Chore Turns Fun
Tradition and advanced technology are part of farm life, such as hand-milking cows the old fashioned way and steaming vegetables using a “fuzzy-logic” cooker.

How to Milk a Cow

    • Physics
      • Optics
    • Earth, Space Science
      • Meterology
    • Society
      • Farming life
    • Work/Careers; Role Models
      • Software engineering
    • Values/Behaviors
      • Sharing household chores
Chapter 7: Pages 38-41 Dark!
On a dark, clear night, you don’t need a compass to know which direction is north, or a watch to tell time. The twins enjoy Uncle Frank’s story about how the Milky Way came about.

Finding the North Star in the Sky

    • Earth, Space Science
      • Astronomy
    • Arts
      • Writing
      • Telling Stories
    • Life Skills
      • Household
      • Outdoors
Chapter 8: Pages 42-47 Back to Familiar Life
The twins learn that “dry” ice isn’t ice at all, but it’s a lot colder than ice made from ordinary H2O. They also learn that Grandpa was an airplane pilot during his military days.

What Is Dry Ice? (Links, including child-friendly)

    • Biology
      • Microbes/Bacteria
      • People
    • Chemistry
      • Molecules
    • Physics
      • Temperature
    • Earth, Space Science
      • Environment
    • Sociology
      • Traditions
    • Language
      • Play on Words
    • Work/Careers; Role Models
      • Airplane Pilot
      • Retirement
Next Adventure: Pages 48-52
On a black mat, the twins arrange stones, then connect them with string, and sprinkle sugar to create a portion of the night sky’s BIG picture.
    • Earth, Space Science
      • Environment
    • Language
      • Play on Words
    • Health
      • Aging
      • Food and Nutrition
    • Arts
      • Creating, Building Things
    • Life Skills
      • Gardening
    • People
      • Generosity
      • Gratitude