science

Education, not fabrication, please. . .

O.K., fair warning: this is a rant and likely to be a long one. However, it is one that I think may find some chord of resonance in whomever reads it. So, thanks for reading. . .

Something’s been bothering me lately.

Specifically, a video I recently watched, that can be found at this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAeKXdLZhOg

And, if you’d rather see an official trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qoeMm0Tm95M&feature=related

My first problem is this: how can we expect our children, our future contributors to society, to be competitive in a globally connected marketplace when they must undergo the reversal of 12 years of brainwashing before they can be productive members of a modern society? Let me tell you, undoing one’s brainwashing is difficult, even when you did it to yourself.

My second problem is this: I have children, the oldest of which just turned 16. How is he supposed to respect his peers and not wonder when the crazy is going to slip out when he knows that most of his peers have their actions governed by a mythical, mystical sky-Daddy?

My third problem is this: we need more hard science graduates. We need to keep students engaged and excited about the actual reality of life around us and building the infrastructure we need, learning the math we need them to master. How can they be expected to do this at a collegiate level if the scholastic learning in their formative years was based on a curriculum that was modified in such ways as substituting one genre of music for another, or telling impressionable children that dinosaurs were on the Ark (not that the Ark should be being discussed at public school in the first place, but I digress. . ..)? They will be reeling from the betrayal, from the complete and utter dishonesty that was perpetuated by every  (or nearly every) trusted adult in their lives up to that point.

Believe me, I’ve been there. Sometimes, I still am.

Here is a delightful, if long, article that details the biggest problems with attrition in hard science fields: https://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/06/education/edlife/why-science-majors-change-their-mind-its-just-so-darn-hard.html?_r=2&pagewanted=all& Now, having read that, and watched the two clips above, do you begin to see what I see?
Since my associate’s degree is in Early Education, I suppose it comes as no surprise that my last link in this chain of future hopelessness if things continue as they are currently progressing should be an article detailing the problems with keeping children in younger grades interested in science, too. Too long has science labored under the titles of “uncool”, and “for geeks only”, and other disparaging titles. http://phys.org/news/2012-04-students-science.html this article has some great ideas. I hope that future- read, near future- educators can employ some of them to help our children grow and maintain a fascination for science.

How else are we going to help our planet, progress our species, and possibly colonize our near space neighbors, such as the moon or Mars?

‘Cause I’ll tell you what, my family and I have already discussed it and as soon as they open colonization of one or the other, we’re off this rock. I will be one of the first anthropologists in space, baby!

😀

Categories: education, humanities, science, writing | Tags: , , , | 8 Comments

A Long Due Update

I have a passion for the Mars Curiosity Rover. I have been denying that passion, for fear that anyone who stumbled across this blog may find it boring to read about a robot, remotely piloted, on Mars, while it’s drivers are still on Earth.

I know!

How could I be so silly?!

🙂

This is my latest favorite photo from Curiosity.

Whether the item in question turns out to be from Curiosity itself, and thus likely made of plastic, the scientists are thinking, or if it turns out to be something phenomenal from Mars itself, I simply do not care. It is amazing to me that we can have presence, and control of a machine ,so far from Home.

I think the image should be shared. I think people should see that we can “lay eyes” upon the surface of a world far, far, (farther than most people can actually conceptualize) far away.

The item just to the left of center screen is what Curiosity is currently investigating.

Categories: education, hobbies, NASA, science | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Another Discovery Via Science

I know, I’m flooding my site today.

I can’t help it; there are too many amazing scientific discoveries! I’m always missing opportunities to blog about them and share my excitement, so this time I decided to go ahead and do it even though I’d already posted under this heading today.

This discovery isn’t just cool, it’s also potentially medically beneficial on a wide scale both population-wise and disease-wise.

So, here’s the short version.

Vaccines traditionally work by eliciting a “very strong T-cell reaction”. Unfortunately some of the most often spread (in my mind= contagious) diseases are in areas that are not accessible to these wonder cells, I mean, T-cells. Such as our naughty bits. You, know, the fun parts that lead us into so much pleasure, pain, and potential trouble. Yup, I’m referring to common sexually transmitted diseases.

So, scientists wondered what would happen if they elicited a strong response, then applied the antibody-rich serum (still uncertain how they obtain that) directly to the genital tissue. Turns out that by using this method, a two-pronged, non-traditional approach, scientists were able to give mice long-term protection against diseases such as “herpes simplex virus” and “HIV-1”.

Don’t believe me?

Check it out for yourself: scitechdaily.com/new-model-for-vaccination-against-genital-herpes/

(It wasn’t the poor machine’s fault. It was my faulty biological brain; I’d forgotten a step.)

Categories: academics, education, hobbies, science | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Today’s Wonder Revealed By Science

3-D images that let scientists examine fossils and discover, in this case, previously unknown behaviors.

Imagine a creature using a mayfly for transportation. Securing itself with “its prehensile antennae” (yeah, those wispy long filaments that extend out, twitching and causing the squeamish everywhere to shudder, but on a much, much smaller scale), the tiny little insect-wannabe hitches a ride on its much bigger cousin.

And to think that this discovery was made using modern technology to study fossils. Check it out!

www.manchester.ac.uk/aboutus/news/display/?id=8882

P.S.

For some reason, WordPress is not working correctly for me today. I have been having issues with links. In this case, you’ll have to copy and paste (it sucks, I know). I’ll edit it with an actual link as soon as I can get my computer to let me. For now, enjoy and happy reading, science-buffs!

🙂

P.P.S

My fault. Links restored. 🙂

Categories: science, writing | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Discovery abounds. . .

It is 8:00am and I have already learned two things: one, I need another page for this blog; I now know how hermit crabs secure themselves in their shells!

O.K. I’ve learned three things. I also learned that science is actually a hobby of mine. Not actively engaging in groundbreaking experiments, but reading about them and staying educated on (some of) the latest breakthroughs and interesting tidbits of knowledge is definitely something I do in my break times. It’s fun. How can it not be fun to learn new things about the world around you? How can one ever think that he or she has “learned all they need to know?”

http://www.sciences.otago.ac.nz/gbu/gbu-hermitcrab.html

 

Check out the above link. It is amazing!

Categories: hobbies, science | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

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