Kids' Choice: Gym, Art or Science Class?

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Teaching kids science has always been a challenge, but why? Isn't a child's nature to explore and discover new things everyday? Every child has this capacity and somewhere along the way many of them lose the spark, the joy of discovery.

A survey by the recently launched laboratory facility for children, the L'Oréal Young Scientist Centre at the Royal Institution in the UK gave some good news and some bad news. The goal of this new facility is to "provide children aged seven to 18 and their teachers with an interactive, experimental space in which to explore science. "

First, the bad news from their survey of 2,000 children, ages between 5 and 18:

At age 14, one out of four students confused Mariah Carey with Marie Curie. {I'm surprised that they're familiar with Mariah Carey - no disrespect, but I would expect more familiarity with Hannah Montana or Selena Gomez by these kids...}

Now, the good news:

After years of being seen as one of the less popular subjects, science is enjoying a
revival in schools. In a new poll of children’s favourite subjects released today by L’Oréal
and the Royal Institution of Great Britain, science took the number one spot ahead of
Physical Education/Games, English and Art. Far from being considered geeky, two thirds
(60%) of children say they actively like science.

Kids’top 10 favourite school subjects

1. Science (15%)

2. PE/Games (14%)

3. English (13%)

4. Maths (12%)

5. Art (10%)

6. Drama (7%)

7. ICT (5%)

8. History (5%)

9. Music (4%)

10. Geography (3%)

‘Interesting’(32%) and ‘exciting’(10%) were the words children most commonly used
to describe the subject. Only 2.5% said it was ‘for geeks’or ‘uncool’.

Admittedly, it's a close tie between science and PE classes, but this is a very promising sign. Now it's up to the teachers, and their families, to nurture the inherent drive to explore our world that is in each of our children.

A version of this article was published at NJ Voices.

For more information about the centre or for teachers who would like to book a session
for their school, visit
- Ends –


The survey of 2,000 children aged between 5 and 18 was conducted by online market
research site between the 3rd and 11th September 2009, with the
demographic breakdowns being representative of the UK population.


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