About: AAAS Awards
AAAS Science Journalism Awards
2006 Recipient: Children's Science News
"Fade to White," 6 January 2006
Journalists worldwide are eligible for this award, which was established in 2005.Geiger won praise from the judges for explaining the basics of na tural selection and evolution to children in a story about the changing color of lizards in the New Mexico desert. "Kids who don't really give a flip about the debate over evolution that surrounds their classrooms relate to lizards," said Jeff Nesmith of Cox Newspapers. Laura Helmuth of Smithsonian magazine said Geiger used "clear, amusing, colorful language" in describing natural selection, speciation and the geology of sand dunes. "The explanation of the process of science was non-intimidating," Helmuth said, "and true to field biology's gritty, eye-squinting, seat-of-the-pants nature." Geiger said the research on the quickly changing lizards was an accessible way to explain evolution to children. "I liked the fact that the study demonstrated the connection between landscape and evolution," Geiger said, "and it was fun to write on research that has such a clear punch line."