I asked a pre-schooler once, “Do you like Physics?” she replied “…What’s a Physics?” This is my attempt to try and explain
Monday, June 30, 2014
Just like a real scientist!
By Renee Webster @reneewebs
Well, the solstice has passed, we’re almost halfway through the year and here at RSHQ the puns ain’t getting any better (sorry not sorry). Thankfully, Real Scientists is only a little bit about indulging the terrible senses of humour of the admins, and mostly about the awesome work that real scientists like this week’s curator Tom Gordon are doing every single day.
Tom gave us a brilliant run down of the Sydney University outreach program Kickstart, which he runs not only at the university, but all over New South Wales. Kickstart allows physics students to participate in experiments that might not be possible in a high school setting, and gives students a taste of university life and laboratories while still in high school. Tom sees an incredible 25 % of all NSW Higher School Certificate students through this excellent program. He also shared with us several pictures of the Kickstart experiments:
A cathode ray tube, something that’s quickly become closer to a museum specimen than an every day item students can relate to.
is it an insulator? is it a metal? No! It’s a semiconductor!
Like a number of other previous curators, Tom took to the airwaves during his time at Real Scientists on ABC Radio Dubbo.
@Gordeauz for all (well 2) of your senses – twitter in your eyes and radio in your ears.
Tom also ran us through his career highlights, from the Questacon Science Circus to behaviour of algae on the Vomit Comet.
An ongoing theme throughout Tom’s week was physics education, and ways we can get students to engage with, and continue studies in physics – including using games in science education. Tom’s even doing a PhD on this so it will be interesting to see how his research in this area progresses.
You can continue to follow Tom’s adventures in physics and science communication on Twitter, where he is @gordeauz.
We’re trying something new this week, since Storify has been giving us a little bit giant coprolites of trouble. To catch up on Tom’s tweets from this week, click here to see the whole week’s worth of content on the Twitter website. If you have thoughts (proton-like or electron-like) on this new way of collecting each curator’s tweets, please let us know in the comments here, on our Facebook page or on Twitter.