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UNDERNEWS

Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who covered Washington during all or part of ten of America's presidencies and who has edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review, which has been on the web since 1995, is now published from Freeport, Maine. We get over 5 million article visits a year. See prorev.com for full contents of our site

March 13, 2010

IT'S NOT JUST TEXAS THAT TEACHES SCIENCE POORLY

BBC - One in 10 children thinks the Queen invented the telephone, a survey of children's science knowledge suggests.

Others gave credit for the invention to Charles Darwin and Noel Edmonds.

One in 20 of the 1,000 pupils polled thought Star Wars character Luke Skywalker or Richard Branson had been the first to set foot on the Moon.

Some 60% of nine- and 10-year-olds thought Sir Isaac Newton discovered fire, the survey for science campaign Birmingham Science City found.

Despite these misconceptions, more children want to win a Nobel prize for science than the X Factor.

Just under a half of boys (49%) correctly pinned down gravity as Newton's ground-breaking discovery, compared with 76% of girls.

Just over a third of boys said Newton discovered fire, while the remaining 16% either said he invented the internet, or discovered the solar system or America.

Eight out of 10 boys correctly identified Alexander Graham Bell as the inventor of the telephone, compared with 69% of girls.

Dr Pam Waddell from Birmingham Science City said: "While some of these findings will raise a smile, it suggests that school children aren't tuned into our scientific heroes in the same way that they might be to sporting or music legends."


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