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Scientific thinking in the classroom? Answered

Hi,
So recently I have received a very open assignment from my English class. In my high school we are having an independent study, during March. I have decided to do some research and hopefully a project about scientific thinking. I was reading Absolute Zero, and the Quest for Cold when it struck me how open scientific thinking, and research was open to many people. Famous scientist like Joules, who was a brewer, had whole other careers besides their scientific research. And even more recently, Bill Nye style science, where anyone can follow along at home, is not seen any more. Shows like the 11th Hour, and Jimmy Neutron make science into some thing distant, and limited to a special few. I see sights such as Instructables as the counter movement to that. Inviting all sorts of people, to experiment, build and learn about science themselves. Especially I enjoy reading about the green projects, because it represents a change in thinking, where everyone can pitch in to make a difference and every experiment and gadget is worth exploring for the sake of the planet.

With my class I would like to highlight how open scientific thinking really is. I am wondering if anyone can think of a project with the right amount of wow factor, and educational value, to highlight the individuality of science and engineering that instructables so well demonstrates? I would like everyone to walk away thinking, "that experiments and science research is with in my reach, and that I could make a contribution to it if I want to." The ideal/mythical project that I am thinking of doesn't need to demonstrate any scientific principal specifically. In my research so far I have liked the green projects, because I believe that from those projects and thinking seen on instructables, real progress will be made to help people and the world.

Thanks!
Alwaysmod

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Yeasayer

9 years ago

http://209.226.49.9/ragged_chutes.htm
This link above has a great story, GREEN
A working pressure of 150 psi. with a 20" output pipe. What would be needed
to boost the pressure to 850 psi using the resource without modification?
This would provide a means to power the French built air powered motor for the residents of Cobalt . This is not a request for information, it is a possible project
(Air Car, web site)
http://www.mdi.lu/english/produits.php

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kelseymh

9 years ago

Besides the topical area of green power generation (discussed by Kiteman below), I highly recommend looking at some of the topics in the first two seasons of MythBusters (the later seasons drifted into mere "let's blow things up"). In many of those early shows, they talked about different hypotheses to explain whatever they were testing, and also shows more of the steps they followed in setting up to either validate or refute those hypotheses. A great example of how the scientific process works is their segment on the old Mentos-and-Diet Coke fountain. I recommend it highly to anyone trying to teach "working science" to either students or non-scientists.

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Kiteman

9 years ago

If you're wanting open, green science, go for electricity generation - wind, wave, hydroelectric, tidal, biomass, geothermal, solar thermal; all of these are accessible to the home scientist from scratch.