Day one in the ‘How Science Works 2011’ household.

It is presenting at events like this one, run by the ThinkTank Museum in Birmingham, that really make you appreciate why you do science communication. Each school in attendance today had the opportunity to sample up to four sessions run by the industry’s finest examples engagement pioneers. This always throws up the same problem though, that of becoming distracted. Not the pupils, but the presenters. Continue reading “Day one in the ‘How Science Works 2011’ household.”

The mythology of science is just as valuable as the actual discoveries?

Votes are in for this one and I’m aware that it is also an ambiguous statement. My reason for asking it stems from the thought that we might be tempted to teach children anecdotes, reinforcing the popular myths littered in science, rather than focusing on the actual events and history of discoveries.

For instance, to quote Michael Stipe, “Newton got beaned by the apple good.” But is it true? We all expect to be true the story that Newton being hit on the head by a falling apple led to the recognition of the mechanisms of gravity. It’s what we were taught when we were little and we likely still believe it to be true. It seems that our trust was misplaced in this fact. Newton only started telling this story many years after the alledged event and just before his death. For longevity, it’s the sort myth Tolkien would have been proud of. Continue reading “The mythology of science is just as valuable as the actual discoveries?”