The Story of the Earth
Niles Eldridge has suggested that the reason creation-science wins over evolution in U.S. public opinion polls is that creationists tell better stories. Yet it was evolution that has led to humans' oral communication abilities. Written communication came tens of thousands of years later. Admittedly, written communication is more efficient and lasting, but the form of that writing can become more effective by taking advantage of the oral tradition, by capturing major scientific themes in memorable stories. Alan Alda, after interviewing scientists for 12 years on PBS' Scientific American Frontiers, helped create the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University. Alda encourages scientists to "skip the jargon and instead tell stories and make personal, emotional connections." This presentation will attempt to demonstrate the effectiveness of such storytelling in a geology classroom.