Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Kid Conversations

Hugh MacLeod, Gaping

I got the new Time for Kids iPad app, and we were looking at one of the articles (projected on the IWB). In it, we learned about a tiny dinosaur skull that was found in the field in the 1960s, put in a drawer at Harvard, taken out of the drawer again in the mid '80s, but only truly DISCOVERED as something amazing and new just recently.

I added this to my "All of the science has not been discovered yet" speech I give every time I get the chance. I don't want kids to give up on a career in science because they have some kind of perception that the field of science is a thing with boundaries. If they are curious about the way something in our world (or out of it, or within it) works, they have the beginnings of a career in science.

I thought of "Science is not finished" again yesterday when my new family doctor told me about a recent study that purports that too many cancers are being detected by mammograms. "Too many?" I asked, incredulously. Seems that not all of the tiny cancers they are finding are malignant, and some of them could actually be "cleaned up" by the body's own immune system, if given time. All well and good, but until we can tell the difference between the cancers, I'm going to remain happy that mammograms are finding lots of cancer early. And I'll pass this bit of "yet-to-be-discovered" science on to the next generations.

I'll end with this, overheard as we passed a line of tiny kinders giving themselves a hug with one arm, finger pressed to lips with the other, listening to their teacher give "When we get back to the classroom" instructions. I'm sure it will be in (or the inspiration for) a poem that I have yet to write. B said,

"I remember being that little, but I don't remember growing."


  1. Love B's line so much! You definitely need to spend some time with that one for your writing. I love the ever-changing nature of science, how it's a place of constant wonder and learning... everything is flexible and filled with possibility. What a great way to phrase it for kids, as not being finished. I'm going to run that by my teenagers today. :)

  2. That is too cute. It's hard to remember growing--we need outside witnesses and evidence, usually.

    (I'm featuring Hugh McLeod's Ignore Everybody book as my writing book of the day tomorrow or Friday--it's fabulous.)


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