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Herbert Spencer Zim Edit Profile

educator , author

Herbert Spencer Zim, American author, educator. Recipient Children's Science Book awards New York Academy of Sciences, 1988. Fellow American Association for the Advancement of Science; member numerous science and educational societies.


Zim, Herbert Spencer was born on July 12, 1909 in New York City. Son of Marco and Minnie (Orlo) Zim.


Student, City College of New York, 1927-1929;Bachelor of Science, Master of Arts, Doctor of Philosophy, Columbia, 1933-1940;Honorary Doctor of Science, Beloit College, 1967;Honorary Doctor of Science, Florida State University, 1977.


Instructor science, summer play schools, 1926-1931;instructor science, Brooklyn Ethical Culture School, 1930-1931;instructor science, New York Ethical Culture Schools, 1932-1950;teacher education department, head science department, 1937-1945;associate professor education, University of Illinois, 1950-1954;professor education, University of Illinois, 1954-1957;educational consultant, Manhasset Bay Schools, 1946-1948;educational consultant, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, 1947-1951;educational consultant, Western Public Company, 1967-1970;educational consultant, American Friends Service Committee, 1968-1978;editorial consultant, Individualized Science Instrnl. System, 1972-1979;president, Rogewinn Corporation, 1968-1971. Instructor Columbia, 1935-1936.

Summer field trips, 1937-1941. Research underGen. Education Board Grant for Comm. on Secondary School Curriculum, Progressive Education Association, 1934-1937. Adjunct Professor education U. Miami, 1970-1982.

Member American Institute Junior Activities Committee, 1938-1942, board of managers, 1940-1942, vice president, 1942;member steering committee Biological Sciences Curriculum Study and Intermediate Sciences Curriculum Study, War Department (pre-induction training program), 1942-1943;civilian public service, 1943-1945.


  • He is best known as the founder in 1945 (and, for twenty-five years, editor in chief) of the Golden Guides, pocket-size introductions for children to such subjects as fossils, zoology, microscopy, rocks and minerals, codes and secret writings, trees, wildflowers, dinosaurs, navigation and more.



Fellow American Association for the Advancement of Science. Member numerous science and educational societies.


Married Sonia Elizabeth Bleeker, January 16, 1934 (deceased 1971). Children: Aldwin Herbert, Roger Spencer. Married Grace Kent Showe, June 4, 1978.

Marco Zim

Minnie (Orlo) Zim

Sonia Elizabeth Bleeker

Grace Kent Showe

Aldwin Herbert Zim

Roger Spencer Zim