Does science education need a dose of danger?

Img 0320 610X458
Does science education need a dose of danger? @ The Social – CNET News

Under the shadow of the Cold War-era Titan II and Atlas rockets set up outside the New York Hall of Science, this weekend’s World Maker Faire extravaganza was, more than anything, a tribute to the more colorful fringes of hands-on innovation, science, and engineering. And the “makers” who populated its tents and booths wanted nothing more than to get the thousands of children in attendance interested in physics, engineering, biology, and even metalwork.

Make a robot friend with Adafruit’s CRICKIT – A Creative Robotics & Interactive Construction Kit. It’s an add-on to our popular Circuit Playground Express, FEATHER and other platforms to make and program robots with CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. Start controlling motors, servos, solenoids. You also get signal pins, capacitive touch sensors, a NeoPixel driver and amplified speaker output. It complements & extends your boards so you can still use all the goodies on the microcontroller, now you have a robotics playground as well.

Join 7,500+ makers on Adafruit’s Discord channels and be part of the community! http://adafru.it/discord

CircuitPython in 2018 – Python on Microcontrollers is here!

Have an amazing project to share? Join the SHOW-AND-TELL every Wednesday night at 7:30pm ET on Google+ Hangouts.

Join us every Wednesday night at 8pm ET for Ask an Engineer!

Follow Adafruit on Instagram for top secret new products, behinds the scenes and more https://www.instagram.com/adafruit/

Maker Business — Fewer startups, and other collateral damage from the 2018 tariffs

Wearables — Light as a Worbla feather

Electronics — Your job’s a joke, you’re broke, your semiconductor is DOA

Biohacking — The Heart Rates of the Hazda

Python for Microcontrollers — One year of CircuitPython weeklies!

Get the only spam-free daily newsletter about wearables, running a "maker business", electronic tips and more! Subscribe at AdafruitDaily.com !


  1. A bit of calculated risk would probably be a boon to education. Even in my short lifetime so far I’ve seen huge changes in the way everything from playgrounds to science experiments are being made more ‘safe’. I’m 28, and many of those who work for me are in their late teens or early 20’s. I’ve asked before about their experiences in school, and it sounds pretty boring.

    Shop classes seem to be dying rapidly, due to their cost and safety issues. In my middle school we were offered Wood, Metal, and various other shop related classes. That often seems to be a rarity today.

    I recently went back home, and my parents now live about 1 block from the elementary school I went to as a child. Much of the equipment I remember is gone, replaced by toys that are colorful, but static and safe.

    Kids will make do. But by not providing them with opportunities to learn in an interesting environment, I think we wrong them.

    I really enjoyed the talk at Maker Faire about how ridiculous our perceptions of risk and danger to kids really are. Sometimes we just need to let kids be kinds. Scrapes and small cuts can be part of the learning process, and they’re often a small price to pay for exciting, interesting, memorable learning.

    (BTW, link seems to be broken)

  2. Not just science education. The real world is a dangerous place.

  3. What? No video?
    No worries.. YouTube delivers!

  4. I just got a 1W blue laser (the spartan from dragonlaser.com). It is dangerous, but as someone pointed out chainsaws are dangerous. So are a lot of other things. I take precautions. Given what the CDC says about STDs, not very many people do. But I think I will do something more meaningful and/or interesting with the mitigated risks I am taking.

    There is a place – terra incognita – where you don’t know the risks, but that is why they are interesting. You have to discover everything about them. Or as Chesterton said, the world is almost rational but not quite – its "wildness lies in wait", but the wait is over. There is so much I would like to probe, investigate, discover even now that would last several lifetimes, but will have to leave to others. I hope if the schools don’t improve homeschooling becomes more popular. Curiosity and creativity – or simple wonder – should thrive, not be suppressed. But curiosity is often met with pharmaceutical solutions.

    Proper science is about journeying into the terra incognita – where you don’t know the rules specifically to discover what the rules are. You already know the areas on the map.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.