WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT SCIENCE

Besides facts and concepts, your school should also teach the basic methods used by scientists in their work. This is essential. Some ways to look at the world are at the heart of the scientific undertaking. Students must learn these techniques to understand subjects such as physics, biology, and astronomy. It is not easy to describe (or teach) scientific inquiry. There is no fixed routine or set of steps that will lead a researcher to the response he seeks. However, there are certain characteristics of science that distinguish it from other methods of investigation. It will be useful to talk about some of the ways in which scientists think, work and see the universe so that you can see if your child’s school teaches this. Scientists as an ordered place approach the universe. They do not regard it as random, but as regular and predictable in a broad sense. The earth turns once every 24 hours. The tide is coming in, and the tide is coming out. Scientists want to recognize these regularities and then identify the general principles that explain them. That is, they try to achieve a systematic understanding that tells us how things work and why. Good...

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