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Learning Evolution

March 8, 2010

An innovative exhibition helps children learn the concepts behind biological evolution.

Transcript

BOB HIRSHON (host):
Evolution for kids…I’m Bob Hirshon and this is Science Update.

An understanding of evolution is essential to the study of biology. But according to University of Michigan cognitive psychologist Margaret Evans the concept that species change over time is not intuitive, especially to young children.

HIRSHON:
She teamed up with science educators to study how to expose kids to the concepts of evolution.

MARGARET EVANS (University of Michigan):
We did it by focusing on two species that are interesting to children, birds, but of course, the origin of birds, which are the dinosaurs. The shift from one completely different animal to another, and at the same time introduced them to the basic principles of common descent and natural selection.

HIRSHON:
Evans says this approach is helping prepare children for more complex biology classes later on. I’m Bob Hirshon for AAAS, the science society.