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Tag archives for science

“I hate math”

I don’t hate math, that is just the title of the post – notice that I put it in quotes. As you may know, I teach this physics course for elementary education majors (using Physics and Everyday Thinking – which is awesome). The curriculum has very little math in it. That is not necessarily a…

Where is the Maths Department?

I was having a discussion with my father about the budgetpocalypse for universities. I don’t know how it came up, but he asked: “What college is the department of Math in?” At Southeastern Louisiana University, the Department of Math is in the College of Science and Technology. Here is a paraphrase of our conversation. Me:…

As part of the Ask a ScienceBlogger series, reader Jim Swanson asks: When I open the dishwasher after washing and the contents are still hot, why do the glass and ceramic items dry off more quickly than the plastic items? This is a great question. Great because it is something most everyone can relate to…

The third leg of science??

I am sad to say the following comes from a school that I attended. This was from an alumni newsletter regarding the activities of one of the physics faculty. “Since the time of Archimedes, sciences advanced along two avenues, through new experiments and through theory….” I have a problem with just that first part, but…

Light and Waves – at a basic level

Yes, this can be very complicated. But what should a middle-school student understand about light? You see stuff in textbooks that is either wrong or just a bunch of disconnected factoids (I like the word factoid). So, what do I think is important about light (not at the Maxwell’s equations level) What is a wave…

The development of the atomic model

I love this story. It is a story of how ideas changed about the nature of the atom. These are the notes (and diagrams) I use when I teach the atomic nature of matter to non-science majors. The best thing about this story is that it is a great example of science. Science (or scientists)…

Pluto. Planet, or not?

Still moving stuff over from my last server. Here is one that keeps coming up. Surprisingly, I STILL get comments and questions from students and teachers about Pluto. Questions such as: “Why do scientists hate Pluto?” “How did they discover that Pluto was not a planet” “What will happen to our planet songs without Pluto?”…

ROYGBIV and Newton

This comes up everytime I teach physics for elementary education majors. The curriculum I use (Physics for Everyday Thinking – which is awesome) says that the colors in white light are ROYGBV (Red-Orange-Yellow-Green-Blue-Violet). Typically, I will get a student that says “Hey! What about indigo? Shouldn’t it be ROYGBIV?” My first reaction to this was…

A demo for the color black

What do you see when you are in a completely dark room with no lights? That is a great question to ask. It can bring out some interesting ideas. Anyway, here is an easy demo to show the color black. The basic idea is to build a box that has a small opening. Here is…

Science is not math

I probably should have included this idea on my “All about science” blog post. Maybe I didn’t put it in there because if I talk about what science is you can figure out what it is not. Science is not math Science is all about making models. It is true that many current models are…