23 December 2010

Kids are scientists

It's something of an article of faith in my family that children are natural scientists.  Yet another illustration is from a classroom of 8 year olds, who recently published in a professional scientific journal.  Yay!

In their case, it was a study of bees and how they identified food.  The full paper is here. A nice journalistic coverage is here.

They did have a professional scientist helping figure out things, and doing the writing, etc..  But the fundamental ideas came from the kids.


warmcast said...

One of the principle findings:

"...We also discovered that science is cool and fun because you get to do stuff that no one has ever done before. (Children from Blackawton)"

Great stuff.

Joel said...

The kids wrote much of the actual paper (most of the abstract, and I'd guess a few of the captions were written by the scientist)

Horatio Algeranon said...

Bees are very cool! (The geometers of the insect world.*)

And young children studying them are even cooler!

Most children are natural scientists, but unfortunately, many of them lose their natural curiosity (or have it drummed out of them) by the time they reach adulthood. somewhere along the way, they become discouraged from asking questions about the world around them.

*What Horatio wants to know is how honeybees make (and know how to make) those perfect honeycombs. Or how carpenter bees drill the perfect holes in your house and in such short time! *&^*%$#@ )

Bayesian Bouffant, FCD said...

Girl, 10, becomes youngest to discover supernova