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The Importance Of Getting Things Wrong

NPR – Anya Kamenetz

“Think about our planet for a second. Earth has an elliptical — oval-shaped — orbit. That means we’re closer to the sun for one part of the year and farther away another part of the year. Does that fact explain why it’s hotter in the summer and colder in the winter? Lots of kids think it does. Lots of adults think so, too. And they’re wrong. Philip Sadler is both a professor of astronomy and the director of the science education department at Harvard University, and he is obsessed with wrong answers like these. “Students are not empty vessels,” he says. “Students are full of all kinds of knowledge, and they have explanations for everything.” From birth, human beings are working hard to figure out the world around us.”(more)

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