In the early twentieth century, encyclopedias addressed to children and youths became special reference works concerning science and technology education. In search of greater comprehension of this historical process, I analyse The Children's Encyclopedia’s representation of science and technology, and how it was re-edited by the North American publishing company that bought its copyrights and promoted its circulation in several countries. Furthermore, I examine how its contents were appropriated in its translations into Portuguese and Spanish, which circulated in Latin America in the first half of the twentieth century. The comparison between the different versions reveals that the writings of science and technology are practically the same, with significant changes only in literature and in the approach of historical and geographical themes. I then argue that, even keeping the scientific contents virtually unchanged, these versions of the encyclopedia gave it a new meaning, because of the contexts in which they circulated. Finally, I show how the appropriations of the encyclopedia contributed to the promotion of scientific values and technological innovation as the core development and as a model of civilization for South American nations.