It is classic creativity practice to consider ways to view your ideas from a new perspective or present them in new ways. It is one reason I’ve been delighted to read about science students who present core information through poetry or dance their dissertations. But I’ll admit, the first time I read about students baking … Continue reading
Filed under Science Lessons …
Planning a Garden, Creatively
Finally, finally, it is gardening time in Michigan. After the long cold winter, I love seeing things become green again. On one side of our back yard, too tree-covered for anything but shade-loving plants, perennial hostas and ferns appear like springtime magic. Behind the house is a small woodlot, created by the city as a … Continue reading
Get Outside for Creative Science
Recently, I’ve been spending time with a four-year-old scientist. Her imagination and curiosity, combined with her mom’s dedication to presenting her with accurate information, has resulted in all manner of interesting conversations about insect body parts, endo- and exoskeletons, how my petunias might be feeling about being planted, and which fish could enjoy playing together. … Continue reading
Seeing the Germs and More
If you haven’t yet seen Mark Rober’s wildly viral How to See Germs Spread video, you should. In fact, stop reading and go watch it right now. The clear demonstration of how germs spread from surface to surface is disconcerting, to say the least, but also clear and easy for young people to understand. Wonder … Continue reading
Explore Under the Earth—From the Sky!
When I was young, one of my favorite books was called All About Archeology. Before I was old enough to read it myself, I begged my father to read it to me (over and over and over), especially the story of the discovery of King Tut’s tomb. The romance and adventure of digging for ancient … Continue reading
Let’s Be Scientists! Or Maybe We Should Do Science. . . .
One of the most important things we can do to help students prepare to be creative scientists is to help them understand how science works. We need to share science that looks like science—unpredictable and full of questions—rather than simple exercises in direction-following. We need students to understand the struggles and dilemmas of scientists along … Continue reading
Sometimes You Have to Say “Oops.”
One of my favorite books about creativity is titled Beautiful Oops. It makes sense because creativity, by definition, means thinking in new ways—sometimes incremental changes, but sometimes a complete change of course, a different perspective. Sometimes that means recognizing that ways we’ve thought before don’t work any more. Sometimes we have to say “Oops, I … Continue reading
Happy 150th, Periodic Table!
The Periodic Table is having a birthday! In March, it will be 150 years since the Russian scientist, Dmitri Mendeleev, took all of the 63 known elements and arranged them into a table. Today the Periodic Table contains over 100 elements and is found in chemistry classes and labs around the world. One of my … Continue reading
Giant Hands in the Desert: Inspiration for Geographic Creativity
As I said last week, it has been quite a summer. The biggest adventure of the season was my trip to Antofagasta, Chile to meet with the wonderful teachers of the Tarpuq project. I thoroughly enjoyed my meetings there—including the chance to speak to an audience listening to a translation through headphones, and working with … Continue reading
Celebrate Urban Birds! Creative Science Right Outside
When I look out my office window, there’s a pretty limited selection of wildlife. But always, even in a Michigan winter, there are birds. Birds are part of virtually every global ecosystem, and in urban landscapes they are one of the most visible evidences that even amidst concrete, the cycles of life continue. They also … Continue reading