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Teach Physics with History

If you propose to improve science teaching by incorporating history of science, you will be told that history is beautiful but sadly time and life are short. I want to provide you with a counterargument: In the usual teaching, students learn almost no physics or mathematics, so the lack of time is irrelevant. That point does not show that we should incorporate history and philosophy of science into the curriculum; I leave that (large) part of the argument to Michael Matthews.Physics Students Learn Nothing, So Try History of Science by S. Mahajan

At a 1998 conference on physics teaching, the organisers treated us to a lecture by William Andrewes, then the curator of Historical Scientific Instruments at Harvard. Andrewes told a tale of longitude, made famous by Dava Sobel’s book, illustrating it using the intricate timepieces in Harvard’s collection. At the end of the lecture, I heard a Nobel Prize-winning chemist exclaim, “That’s how we should teach kids!”A Gold Mine of Teaching Ideas by S. Mahajan

Further Reading

solutions/education/history.txt · Last modified: 2017/11/02 13:30 (external edit)