the kids are preternaturally good. And they ask questions. If everyone on Earth gathered in one place and started running, and then stopped suddenly, would it affect the rotation of the earth? (Help?! My physics isn’t what it should be for this kind of question). What is a black hole? My dad burned his hand, do you know what to put on it to make it better? How come we are so slow in making progress in science? (Really: a sixth grader asked that. Do you mean “we” like us in this classroom or like Us, I asked, waving my hands to indicate all of humanity. Well, like the cavemen, that was a long time ago, but we haven’t made that much progress, he said. Who are you comparing us to? I asked. I mean, how do you know we haven’t? Then a little speech about change being hard, a bit of Galileo, it all led to a discussion about people in power sometimes making change even harder). Some stuff edging up to My Church Doesn’t Believe in Evolution (and Neither Does God). A bit from me about science and religion not necessarily being in conflict. This is so much better than anything extrinsic. Meanwhile, the temperature strips taped to the globe were not heating up, not changing color, in the light of the lamp meant to demonstrate solar heating and the angle of the earth. It hasn’t changed color, I said. Notice that I didn’t say, It didn’t work, I say, modeling scientific attitudes – no such thing as a failed experiment, just different results than what you expected. But in my head, I’m thinking, Sh*t, it didn’t work!
I’m bluffing my way into Sony Wonder tomorrow with twelve kids. Don’t ask, just pray for me.