After years of building products and building brands at IDEO ( with a focus on materials and materiality. Kara Johnson (aka KJ Scribbles) has decided to focus on bringing to life the art AND science of materials in the mind of young readers (age 0-5). Starting before school starts, before STEAM “officially” starts, she is writing/illustrating a series of children’s books designed to teach young kids about materials. Years ago she was inspired by some early work that John Maeda did (one of the original leaders to put the A back in STEAM): he wrote a computer algorithm to express the character of color based on the numeric input of each Pantone color formula – connecting science and art…now KJ is writing a series of children’s books that intend to do something similar. Each one is about a different material, starting with wool felt…his name is Woollard.

The personality of the material is expressed in the book and young kids are encourage to learn/ask what the world around them is made of. If you like the book, please support her Kickstarter campaign and/or share this idea with other STEAMers. If this first book is successful, there are more books to write/illustrate/build and she will launch a digital platform where kids can play/interact/learn about the same characters.