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Transcript

Bill Nye: No one’s ever asked me that before.  That’s pretty good.  How is science education like comedy?  Well, you want to get people to choose, choose to embrace it. 

You always want the student to figure it out for her or himself.  You don’t want to give her or him the answer, if you can help it.  And maybe that’s—actually, maybe that’s an excellent analogy to the—Steve Martin’s point was, as I understand it, as I understand it, was that the funniest time is when you say “Well, you had to be there, you had to be there.”  And then the reason for that was because you’ve chosen to laugh.  You have picked a time to laugh.  So if you challenge the student to come up with the answer for her or himself, then he’s chosen to do that.  She has chosen to get the answer.  And so it makes it your own.  As we say, having somebody do it for themselves is worth being told about it a thousand times. 

And so what you want to do is arrange science education so that students have hands-on experiences.  And everybody talks about this all the time, but it’s a whole other thing to actually pull it off, to actually do it that way.  

Directed / Produced by
Jonathan Fowler & Elizabeth Rodd

More from the Big Idea for Saturday, August 24 2013

Burden of Proof

According to Bertrand Russell's famous teapot analogy, the philosophical burden of proof falls on those who make claims that are scientifically unfalsifiable.  Understanding the burden of proof... Read More…

 

Teaching Science Like Comedy

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