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Scientific Memories.

While writing my “Scientifically Speaking” essay this week, I thought a lot about my childhood and what some of my best memories associated with science were.  I had written a good number of paragraphs before I even remembered my favorite memory, my trips to the Boston Museum of Science.  I remember being around eight years old and taking trips with my family to visit the giant building in the city, always excited by the buzzing, colorful exhibits.  At the time, I’m not sure that I appreciated the scientific value as much as the fun of being out in such a big place to explore.  The designers of  the museum exhibits were very smart in their choices, choosing topics whose examples could be very fun for young children.  In this way, the museum made children think that they loved science from a young age.

I went back to the museum a year or two ago to see an exhibit on the Harry Potter movies that was in town for about a month.  After my friends and I finished with the Harry Potter section, we decided to stick around and explore for a few more hours.  I remembered many of the exhibits in a dreamlike way, and felt a strange sense of deja vú while walking around.  This time, I enjoyed reading about the different scientific processes and understanding what the examples in the exhibits were trying to show me.  I had learned about many of the topics in school, and happily made connections from them to homework or labs that I had performed.  When we had to leave a few hours later, I wished I could’ve had even more time to look around!

My question to all of you is, do you have a favorite childhood memory relating to science?  Did you ever visit science museums, or enjoy a special scientific television show?  I’d love to know what your introduction to science was.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. September 23, 2011 at 6:09 pm

    One of my first scientific experiences, that I remember well, was in fifth grade. My science teacher held an after school program call “Lab Rats.” We got a box full of lab equipment and chemicals and every week we would get to do an experiment. I remember one week we got to make goop like stuff, similar to silly putty, and I thought I was so cool that I had made it myself. One month when my teacher held the program I couldn’t go because it was on Tuesdays, which was when I had dance, and I remember being so upset and trying to convince my mom I could do both. I lost the battle but it just goes to show how science evolves over time in school. Now taking Environmental Geology (I have to take a science course as a requirement for the business school) I do not like it. I am not interested in science and do not see how its going to help me in my future in business. It seems so strange to me that years ago I loved science and was so curious and now I am not interested at all. I wish I could bring back my enthusiastic science loving self when I sit in my lecture hall taking notes about earthquakes and rocks.

  2. dj74
    September 23, 2011 at 6:27 pm

    One of my favorite movies from my childhood was “Osmosis Jones”. For those of you who are unaware, “Osmosis Jones” followed the life of a white blood cell that was a bumbling police officer (who had surprisingly consistent facial features to the actor who did his voice, Chris Rock) and his friend Drix, a cold pill, as they worked together to evict the germs in the body. Every time I think about this movie I smile just a little because I can finally understand all of the jokes, references and settings that took place, because they were all about aspects of the immune system that I have studied. I am a visual learner, so in high school when we were learning about the different functions of the cells in the body, I always related it to “Osmosis Jones”. For example, the representation of a white blood cell as a police officer that attempts to expel the diseases/germs/bugs that infect the body, the criminals, with the added help of a cold pill.

    There were several TV shows that discussed science in an appealing way to me as a kid, but “Osmosis Jones” was definitely one of the forerunners that sparked my interest in Biology. Its funny to think about my ignorance as a child compared to what I know now, but in a way I guess ignorance was bliss because I would have most likely been bored if I knew all of the faults and misconceptions that occurred in the movie when I first saw it ten years ago.

  3. September 24, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    Yea, my first ever exposure to science was through Dexter’s Laboratory. I used to love that show, watching it for hours every weekend. In elementary school, I was obsessed with science. I was in the science club, and I was the best in the school (I can say that because I won two awards for it), and my elementary school only had two science awards to give.

    Then once middle school hit, that was it for me and science. I had a teacher who looked and acted like Dean Winchester from Supernatural. He was a horrible, but cool, teacher who just sucked at teaching.

    I became interested in science again after I discovered Mythbusters. Then I would try some of the experiments that they did, most notably the paper crossbow. I was able to built a repeating paper crossbow with a scope, explosive ammo, and….yea I’ll stop before you guys think I’m a homegrown militant lol

  4. September 26, 2011 at 3:28 am

    I actually wrote a section in my essay exactly about this subject! I too was introduced to science in a museum built to engage kids. I loved every exhibit, and saw each of them as a toy or game, completely disregarding their scientific properties. The museum that I used to go to was a hands-on museum, so everything that was in it was interactive- which was amazing! I loved it so much, I specifically remember one of the exhibits being a sort of merry-go-round contraption which you held onto and spun around. The point was to show you the laws of motion and centripital motion- when you stuck your leg out you somehow slowed down and then sped up again as you contracted your body. This exhibit was related to ice skaters, which I found so fun! It wasn’t until last year, in physics class when I really learned about what these scientific laws and reactions really were. I like that you went back and really saw the scientific value of the exhibits, next time I’m in my hometown I think I’ll go back to the museum and see if the same thing happens to me!

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