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HIVE TOPIC OPEN: June 1, 2012 - June 24, 2012

How Can We Improve American Science Education?



Science of SIN

112

It's Bill Nye the Science Guy - for an 18 year old.

Once science education stops being about dinosaurs and space exploration and gets more abstract (molecular biology, chemistry, physics), science often becomes dull, geeky, uncool. That doesn't mean that teens lose curiosity about the natural world. It's just no one is explaining the scientific questions young adults have at this stage in their lives. Why do I love getting drunk but always have a bad hangover? Why can't I lose weight? And why does it feel good sometimes when I stick things up my butt?

Science of Sin seeks to change that. By capitalizing on the innate, unanswered curiosity youth have, we show the relevance of science in everything that matters to them. Science of Sin is a YouTube channel that speaks the language of youth — silly, irreverent comedy videos, fart jokes, topless hosts — to sneak in some real, honest health, biology, chemistry, and physics to excite youth about the scientific process (http://www.youtube.com/scienceofsin).

Hosted by a former toxicologist, currently the videos center around the health sciences to begin attracting and fostering an audience (what do clinical studies really show about sex, drugs, looking good). The next phase is to delve deeper into the biological, chemical, and physical connections and processes that drive pleasure seeking. How do electrons spark lust, love, and orgasm? What do brain scans tell us about why we love sports (and what is a brain scan anyway?) What should you look for when analyzing weight loss studies (double-blind, control group, large sample size)?

Ultimately, we will use the videos and social media to build a fun, entertaining experience that engages youth about all the scientific questions they have and show how seemingly abstruse research and concepts connect to their day to day lives. The goal is to get all people speaking the language of science by connecting them to whatever is emotionally meaningful to them, from sex, drugs, and rock and roll to peace, love, and the meaning of life.


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