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Raising Science Literate Children

More and more, people ask how they can raise their children to be science literate. Maybe they'll grow up to be scientists, but that's not the point.

To be science literate means knowing how to ask questions, and to be flexible in thought. To look deeper than face value, and see what's going on in those gears behind the facade. To identify assumptions and be ready to let go of them when overwhelming evidence shows them to be incorrect. To be comfortable with some uncertainty.

To raise a science literate child is to share and encourage their explorations. To learn with them. To be honest when you don't know the answer, and brainstorm ways to find out. Nurture their curiosity and natural scientific talent.

Remember that science isn't about knowing things, but about finding out things. It's about exploration.

You don't have to do it all alone. Keep some great resource books around. The DK books are really wonderful, and beautifully illustrated. They're great for "looking up" something or just browsing. A great source for great science books for kids is the gift shop at science and natural history museums.

Comments

What are the "DK" books?

I woke my daughter up last night at 10:30 and dragged her outside to watch the Eclipse!

They publish many different types of books, but their science and nature books are particularly visually appealing. Here's their website: http://us.dk.com/static/cs/us/11/science/intro.html