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Chapter 20: House on fire 
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 Chapter 20: House on fire
Chapter 20: House on fire

You can discuss Chapter 20: House on fire here.



Tue Jan 13, 2015 5:31 pm
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Post Re: Chapter 20: House on fire
Sagan touches on getting school children interested in science by making it more interesting. If it was taught better, Sagan thinks that a child's natural curiosity will take over from that point (I don't doubt this). I agree with him and share his concern about our schools. HOW science is taught is a real problem, I think.

One thing Sagan mentions is how great museums are to visit.
Getting children to visit museums..,

Quote:
inspires children to read a book, or take a course, or return to the museum again to engage in a process of discovery - and, most important, to learn the method of scientific thinking
- page 348

Just one anecdote I'd like to share:

Last December I took a day off from work so that I could visit the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles to view the Pompeii exhibit that has since moved on to another location.
I hadn't been to the LA Museum in god knows how long. After the exhibit, I ventured on to the science section to see how its changed over the years.

It's a totally great experience. There's so many hands-on sections that are really fun to examine, much different from what I recall. The museum experience back in my day was a much more passive "look but don't touch" experience.

A high school field trip was touring the facilities.
What should have been a much more engaging encounter with the science museum was totally offset by what had the attention of the school kids - their smart phones.

How ironic, I thought;
Science provides us with impressive nifty gadgets that provide a means to become totally disengaged from the environment. :|

So much for getting high school kids interested in natural science when you can't take their smart phones away.



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Sun Feb 15, 2015 3:24 pm
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One more post ought to do it.

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Post Re: Chapter 20: House on fire
Two of my three children are teachers. My eldest, a daughter, teaches English Language in secondary school and my youngest, a son, teaches reception class in a junior school. They both love their jobs, but it seems to me that it takes a lot more to engage a child's interest these days. They have so many distractions.

As Sagan says, it is greatly to the childs' advantage if the parents are academic. They can then naturally help the child to take its studies seriously. If the parents haven't been to university, they cannot promote the advantages to their children.

We have excellent science museums and we have taken both our children and grandchildren to them. We live quite close to Jodrell Bank Radio Telescope, which has a hands-on learning centre.

When we took my grandson, Isaac at the age of about five, we were letting him experiment with the large whispering dishes, whereby he went up steps and whispered into an enormous dish, whilst grandad and another little boy with his father stood in front of the other one some yards away and could hear quite clearly. Unfortunately, Isaac shouted something very rude indeed, and proceeded to giggle helplessly. Grandad was most embarrassed, and I got into trouble for giggling too. He actually had shouted, 'Donkey Willy'......so rude, but innocent...too.

Now, he is 14 years old and is choosing his options subjects at school. It appears that he is quite gifted in science....so you see, there is always hope.

I know I'm waffling on here, but I can't actually think of much to say about this chapter, although I did find it interesting....


_________________
Only those become weary of angling who bring nothing to it but the idea of catching fish.

He was born with the gift of laughter and a sense that the world is mad....

Rafael Sabatini


Wed Feb 25, 2015 2:54 pm
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