3RRR FM Radio – Learning and Writing

This morning I got the chance to be part of The Breakfasters with Alicia Sometimes on 3RRR FM in Melbourne, Australia. I spoke about two studies by Dr Karin James, that looked at how children learn letters and evidence of brain changes after different types of learning. Dr James is the director of The Cognition and Action Neuroimaging Laboratory. Please check out her website for updates on findings in this area.

http://www.indiana.edu/~canlab/index.html

These are the two studies in particular that I spoke about on the radio this morning.

Study #1

James, K.H. (2010). Sensori-motor experience leads to changes in visual processing in the developing brain. Developmental Science,13 (2), 279-288.  doi:10.1111/j.1467-7687.2009.00883.x    (PDF)

Study #2

James, K.H. & Engelhardt, L. (2012).  The effects of handwriting experience on functional brain development in per-literate children. Trends in Neuroscience and Education, 1, 32-42.  doi:10.1016/j.tine.2012.08.001    (PDF)

Putting the (A)rts into STEM makes STEAM

STEME refers to the education of Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics. It looks at how these topics are taught in our modern education system. There has been a recent call for STEM to include the ARTS as it is perceived that the arts will add creativity and flexibility into areas that are not traditionally seen this way. In a great article, Shane Taylor argues about why this should be the case 🙂

The Art Of Making: From STEM to STEAM

Primary Teachers of Science: Be Passionately Curious

Some inspiring words for Primary Science Teachers.

Hypothetical Thinking

This is part of my lecture from this afternoon’s introduction to the preservice teacher course I give each year. It is an introduction to scientific ideas, modelling the pedagogies of primary science teaching. We move in and out of learning science, and learning to teach science.

“I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.” – Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein was an exceptional scientist. He was particularly intelligent, it’s true, and creative as well; you have to be to come up with totally new ideas and apply them as he did. But his quote reminds us that it’s not our talents that bring us success, it’s the effort we make. Professor Einstein ascribes his passion for finding things out as the reason that he worked so hard. Professor Richard Feynman, another brilliant physicist who lived after Einstein’s era, also talked about “the pleasure of finding things out”. To many scientists, it…

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Science Writing Prize 2014: How to write a science feature

Wellcome Trust Blog

Matthew Herring, Wellcome Images

The Wellcome Trust Science Writing Prize 2014 is open for entries – offering you a chance to win £1000 and see your article in The Guardian or Observer. We know that staring at a blank page can be daunting, so we asked Nicola Davis, commissioning editor for Observer Tech Monthly to share her advice on how to write a feature.

1. Choose your topic and length carefully

Be realistic about the issue you are covering – does it have enough dimensions to hold a reader’s interest for a long feature? If the story can be summarised in 180 words, you don’t need to write a 1,800-word feature. And anything beyond 4,000 words is a very long read.

2. Have a plan

Make a list of all the points you want to cover in the article then put them into an order that allows you to move with the most ease…

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Science Book a Day Interviews Paul Hoffman

My interview with Paul Hoffman

Science Book a Day

paul_bioSpecial thanks to Paul Hoffman for answering 5 questions about his recently featured book – The Man Who Loved Only Numbers: The Story of Paul Erdos and the Search for Mathematical Truth

Paul Hoffman is the president and CEO of Liberty Science Center, a 300,000 square-foot learning center in Liberty State Park on the Jersey City bank of the Hudson. Liberty Science Center is visited by 600,000 people a year and is home to the nation’s largest IMAX domed theater. He is known as a journalist and biographer whose work explores the relationship between genius, madness, obsession, and creativity. – From Paul’s homepage.

Paul’s Homepage: http://thephtest.com

#1 – How did you come to write this book? How did you go about researching Paul Erdos’ life?

For the November 1987 issue of Atlantic Monthly I wrote a long profile of Paul Erdős based on my accompanying him for a month on his mathematical sojourns.  He (and I)…

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The Geek Manifesto – @SciBookChat – February 2014 Book

index@SciBookChat is starting in 2014. We, being myself (@popsciguyoz), and Lisa Bailey (@lisushi) from Royal Institute Australia (RiAus) will be running the book club over twitter and hope to chat to many people around the world about science books! Our second book, which we will talking about on the 3rd of February, 2014 at 8:30pm Australian EDT. I hope to see you online then!

I have started an Eventbrite event. Please join it!


The Geek Manifesto: Why Science Matters by Mark Henderson

Whether we want to improve education or cut crime, to enhance public health or to generate clean energy, we need the experimental methods of science – the best tool humanity has yet developed for working out what works. Yet from the way we’re governed to the news we’re fed by the media we’re let down by a lack of understanding and respect for its insights and evidence. In The Geek Manifesto Mark Henderson explains why and how we need to entrench scientific thinking more deeply into every aspect of our society. A new movement is gathering. Let’s turn it into a force our leaders cannot ignore.

The Science Book Chat Book Club (@scibookchat) meet on the first Monday of every month on TWITTER at 8:30pm AEDT. Follow @scibookchat and the hashtag #scibook for announcements on upcoming book selections. Hosted by Lisa Bailey (@lisushi) and George Aranda (@popsciguyoz). Come on down and join us. Tell us if you loved the book, hated it, or even didn’t get a chance to finish it!

Science Book a Day Interviews Jason Chin

My interview with Jason Chin.

Science Book a Day

Jason_ChinSpecial thanks to Jason Chin for answering 5 questions about his recently featured book – Redwoods

Jason grew up in a small town in New Hampshire, and studied illustration at Syracuse University.  In 2001 he moved to New York City and found a job at a children’s bookstore in Manhattan.  It was through co-workers at the store that Jason found his way to his current publisher, Roaring Brook Press. – From Jason’s Homepage

Jason’s Homepage: http://jasonchin.net
Jason’s Twitter: https://twitter.com/authorjasonchin

#1 – What was the impetus for this book?

I made Redwoods when I lived in New York City.  I rode the subway every day to work (at a children’s bookstore) and one day I was reading an article in a magazine about Redwood trees and the scientists that study them.  The article sparked my imagination — I started to day dream about exploring the canopy and when I got home I started doing…

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