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Wrapping ideas and spectacle into the perfect Christmas present
From Research Fortnight A few years ago, I demonstrated the science behind buoyancy by attaching helium-filled balloons to a teenage girl and floating her off Alexandra Palace in north London. “It was boring,” she said, on returning to earth. “All we did was fly.” Kids, eh? In the age of Harry Potter and the Xbox, it can be hard to thrill with mere reality. And yet the world’s increasingly synthetic nature has also created an appetite for unmediated experience—think of how attendance at live music has boomed as record sales have collapsed. This is a hunger that educators of all stripes should be tapping into. When done well, there’s an immediacy and directness about a lecture that makes it the perfect vehicle for kindling insight. That’s particularly true of my science, chemistry, because no other discipline is so suited to...
Posted Dec 19, 2012 at
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