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The Drake Equation | Posted in Earth and Space Science

The Drake equation is not directly used by scientists in their research. Rather it is often used when talking about life in the universe to non-scientists, such as in astrobiology courses, as James mentioned. One of the keynote addresses I sometimes deliver is on astrobiology, and I discuss the Drake equation quite a lot, as it relates to many fascinating topics regarding the development of life in the universe, where we would expect to find life, and how common we might expect life to be.

The purpose of the Drake equation is not to give a precise answer to that fundamental question -- How many technological civilizations are in our galaxy? -- but to form the basis of discussions by presenting various types of information that we would need to know, if we wanted to answer that question.

So basically the Drake equation is a statement that "stimulates intellectual curiosity about the universe around us, for helping us to understand that life as we know it is the end product of a natural, cosmic evolution, and for helping us realize how much we are a part of that universe." (https://www.seti.org/drakeequation)

What the equation and the search for life has done is focus science on some of the issues concerning life in the universe, specifically the development of life starting with chemical processes, the development of multi-cellular life, and the development of intelligence.

Matt


Matthew Bobrowsky

The Rock Cycle | Posted in Earth and Space Science

It would be helpful to know what the students already know about rock formation and earth science in general. If they have a basic understanding of rock formation then a hands-on activity identifying rock samples in a general way would reinforce their beginning understanding of the characteristics of sedimentary, metamorphic, or igneous rocks. The processes that form rock are more easily understood when looking at actual rocks.


Margaret Ashbrook

Implementing STEM in my classroom | Posted in STEM

Hi Leslie,

STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, every teacher should bring implement STEM to their classes. STEM is growing everywhere, students should be prepared when they just attend school. Kindergarten is a great age to let children start STEM, this is like a foundation, after they get into it, they will feel comfortable when they get into higher grade level. I think you should give young children more creative hands on activities to attract their interest, or give them more topic that related to their life, instead of just lecture the concept. I believe our job is exploit students potentialities, not cram them. Let students feel study is an interesting thing, then they will start to learn by themselves. Hope you love my idea.

Yixiu


Yixiu Yan

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