Hooray, Hooray! It's Science! The Sixth-Grader's Perspective

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Science  10 Jul 1998:
Vol. 281, Issue 5374, pp. 170-171
DOI: 10.1126/science.281.5374.170

On 20 March, high school students presented their thoughts on science and society as part of the 150th anniversary essay series. This week, sixth-graders (aged 10 to12 years) from C. H. Bird Elementary School in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, tell us what they think science is all about.

Science Has Helped Us All

Science has changed my life because everything is so much easier. Take teaching, for instance. When my teacher wants to hand out a paper to 20 students he takes one paper to a copier and, just like that, he has 20 papers. It makes learning easier for me, and it makes my teacher's job a lot easier.

When I get home from school I watch TV. Fifty years ago they couldn't watch TV. I like to read and I usually have to turn on a light to read. Light is part of science. When I am cold I turn on the heat, and I get warm. Long ago they had to make fires.

Today, thanks to science, we know what the weather is going to be like the next day. We know if it is going to rain, sleet, snow, or even hail. We know pretty close to the exact temperature.

Today we have cars to get around in, and believe me, cars make everything easier. Everyone's life has improved through science because we know more about our health. We know what to eat and what not to eat. We know not to smoke, but to eat lots of veggies.

Without science a lot of us would be out of work. Think about all the scientists, doctors, and astronauts. They would have no work if it wasn't for science.

See, without science, nobody would know anything. Just think about it. Why would anybody want to learn and go to school? Why would they want to eat things that didn't taste good like veggies? Nobody would understand anything. When you really stop to think about it, science has helped us all.

Mera Dorner

How Science Has Changed My Life

Without science we wouldn't have medicine, music, television, compact discs, pencils, computers, rubber, ink, planes, plants, cars, gasoline, or stoves. When my mom and dad were kids, they didn't have too many computers, and no compact discs, or compact disc players. They didn't talk about cancer when my grandfather was young. They had cassette tapes and television when my mom was a kid.

When my grandfather was a kid they didn't know how you could catch a cold. Now we know how you get it. With science we know what to do if we have cancer, a cold, or the flu.

Science is fun sometimes. We have learned about elements, acids, and animals. We know what kind of foods are good for you, and bad for you. We still don't know what makes AIDS. Without science we wouldn't know what we are. We are Homo sapiens. We wouldn't have a nice house or clothes. We wouldn't know what sports were, or what plastic was. Science has helped me know what life is and that you have to work to stay alive in the world. Science is sometimes real and sometimes not real. Science can be unknown or found out, but it is still science. Without science we couldn't really do much of anything.

Science has changed my life a lot because we have electricity. Electricity is helpful because lights, telephones, and radios all run on electricity.

Science is important to us because we need it. Medicines help keep people alive. If we couldn't do surgery I wouldn't have a grandfather alive this very day. Without science we couldn't make hot-air balloons. We wouldn't have ships, or boats to sail. We wouldn't have VCRs, or movies. Science has made it so we can clone animals.

My favorite thing about science is the elements, acids, and bases. I think science shouldn't be so unknown. We use science every day of our lives. Makeup wouldn't be worn by people. Makeup can be powder, lipstick, and eye makeup, all made through science.

Sports have been around for a long time, but they have changed a lot along the years. Snowboarding, bobsledding, and others have been made up. Sports are fun for exercise and fun as a pastime. They are even more fun because of science.

Lucas Gustafson

Science Changed Everything

Science has changed everybody's life somehow. Science has made my life more comfortable by making security systems. It helps me get to sleep faster. Some things that I have today are machines to help us make buildings and things that are battery-operated such as lights, CD players, radios, watches, cars, phones, and planes.


Science lets astronauts go into outer space and allows us to study the planets and stars and even some countries. Without science my life would be boring. Without science I would not have the telephone, lamps, radios, CD players, Play Station, Sega, and both my computers. I would not know all that I know if it weren't for science. Some important advances are us going into outer space, color TV, satellites for studying things, telescopes, computers to see what is happening around the world, security cameras, clocks that run on batteries, chemical cures, and formulas that keep people alive who are on life support medicine. Without science most everything would be dead. Without science the whole world be dead.

Nick Nagel

What Is Science?

Science? What is science? Science is a search for understanding. We search for understanding in four ways: through life, through physics, through chemistry, and through earth studies.

Sometimes we forget that science does so much for us. What would the world be like without it? What has science done for you? Example: smallpox. If there wasn't any science, how would we have gotten rid of it? That takes us to medicine. What has it done for you? Everybody gets the chicken pox and the measles. We have medicines for those and many other major and minor sicknesses. Of course, there are a few like cancer and AIDS that can't be cured. You never know, we could find cures for those sometime in the near future. We have a cure for some types of cancer, but it is not a hundred percent sure of working. With the technology we have today we might find one in the near future, as well as for AIDS.

Technology has a lot to do with science. Many scientists have dedicated their lives to trying to find new medical technology. Scientists search for technology in every way.

What has science done for me? Well, when I was a baby I had seizures and they were very serious. I was given special medicine to hold them back a little. I also had a half black lung so they had to remove it. If it weren't for science I would not be here today. So I have a lot of reasons to thank science for its help in my life.

Now you see how science has helped in all our lives.

Katie Ryan

How Science Made My Life Better

Science has played a big part in everyday living, for everyone and me.

Science gets us to wake up on time. It gets us to work or school, and it helps us learn.

Science keeps us healthy and in shape. Science can include so many different topics: weather, automobiles, and curing diseases for humans and animals.

Science has done so much since the beginning of time. In my 11 years so far, I have had surgery. Medicines helped to put me to sleep, and that helped me feel better soon. The surgical tools were very up-to-date, so there was less pain and less cutting needed. Without science in the medical field, I might be deaf today.

Nicole Boyd

The World of Science

Science has changed the world in uncountable ways. Transportation is a great scientific advance. Now we can cross oceans with ease, though pollution from mufflers is a dangerous factor. Computer technology has simplified my life so much. To do research, all I have to do is go online. Computers also help me type things, and help many working adults with their jobs.

Video games are a miracle to me. I can play them for hours straight. They have added comfort and enjoyment to my life. If I'm bored, I'll go up to my room and play Play Station, as long as I want to.

The discovery of elements has so greatly helped the world with manufacturing, medicine, and further research on practically any mystery. It has allowed different building materials to be created along with cloth. Dangerous poisons and chemicals are yet to be discovered, and people need to be warned about them. Many school necessities, such as lead and chalk, were both created from different elements. If elements weren't discovered, chances are lead and chalk wouldn't be here today.

The creation of modern-day medicine has saved so many lives already, and scientists are still discovering new cures. They have helped the common cold all the way to slowing down the process of AIDS. It helps me by stopping my headaches.

Medicine, on my account, is the best scientific discovery ever. Electricity has brought millions of extremely helpful inventions, including the light bulb, which ranks as my second best scientific discovery ever. If it wasn't for light bulbs, we'd have to use candles to light up our houses! Also without light bulbs we'd lose the ability to explore many types of dark mysteries, such as caves. Cars and other means of transportation would not be able to drive fast at night at all because other drivers would have an extremely hard time spotting them on the road. People crossing the street wouldn't have stop lights to know when to cross, and they couldn't see when cars are coming!

That is what I think of the development of science, and its doings.

Maxwell Beavan

Changes in Science and My Life

Science has changed my life in many ways. It has taught me about life, about wonders beyond this world, and about the relations between these wonders. Science has taught us all to expand our knowledge and has taught us things from molecules through planets. It has helped me with work.

It has helped my grandma, because she had no knowledge of cars and technology before, but now she knows anything she wants to know about science. It has helped my mother, too. She needs it for the job she has. She may be asked a question or have to fix something electronic, because she works in an electronics department.

My dad may need science because his whole life is science. He works at Ameritech. He has to go into manholes and fix things. He needs science to test the manhole with a passport. A passport is a machine, so it must be science. He would then need science to do the job right.

My brother needs science because he needs a cash register to do his job, and he also has to be ready to answer a scientific question a customer may ask. He also needs it for totaling things up or fixing computers and programming them, too.

Science helps my aunt because she is a teacher and may be asked a scientific question. She also needs it to make tests on her computer and probably even to total up grades.

Science helps me in many ways, especially when it comes to learning things. I also have electricity and knowledge of scientific things. Science also has things that help when there is no electricity. Electrical things that I appreciate are TV, phones, radios, microwaves, light, clocks, VCR, heat, and many more useful things. Thanks to science.

Those are the people in my life and the ways they are affected by science. There are millions of ways science helps us and our world, but not the room to write them all down.

Kate Metz

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