Whoosh! Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions

Author Chris Barton Illustrated by Don Tate


Age range: 4-8

Whoosh tells the story of Lonnie Johnson who has a child wanted his own space. He was an inventor and need his own space for a workshop and a place to keep his rocket kits. As a youngster he taught himself how to make rockets and he made his own robot named Linex. He wanted to enter Linex into a science fair, but he could not get the transmitter to work to give commands to his robot, he found his inspiration through a walkie-talkie and won the science fair. After obtaining his engineering degree he worked for NASA on sending a probe to Jupiter, it was Lonnie’s job to come up with a backup system in case power was lost. Galileo was a success thanks to Lonnie. At home Lonnie was looking for a way to make a new cooling system for refrigerators and air conditioners; he was testing out his idea in the bathroom and whoosh a powerful stream of water exploded across the room. Lonnie the inventor had dreams of turning it into a water gun, however he was rejected multiple times until he had a yes, and the Super Soaker was born.

A Bookish Decree: A remarkable story about an innovative inventor

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