Comment »Posted on Thursday 12 March 2009 at 8:30 pm by Jacob Aron
In Education, Getting It Right

A few months ago Alom Shaha asked me to contribute to his “Why is science important?” project. I, like many others, submitted an answer to his website, but the site was only one part of the project. Alom has now completed the accompanying film, and you can view it online for free.

I’ve had a watch, and I’m really impressed. When Alom first told me about the project, I wasn’t quite sure how the website was going to link in to the film – would it just provide more information for interested viewers? It turns out that the website is really the star of the film, with Alom using it to work out just why science is important.

Many of the website contributors, such as Susan Blackmore and Adam Hart-Davis, pop up in the film to reiterate their message. Others make their way into the film with choice quotes from the website, including yours truly.

I can tell Alom had a lot of fun making this film. He gets to run on hot coals, take a spin in a giant centrifuge, and travel the country in search of an answer. It’s been produced for Teacher’s TV, so is understandably a little classroom focused at times, but I enjoyed the chance to have another think about this thing we call science.

My original answer for Alom took me a number of drafts, and I still wasn’t quite satisfied with it. Alom’s effort lets the viewer hear from a range of people and figure it out for themselves – it’s definitely helped me refine my thoughts.

As a follower of everything Web2.0, I’m also intrigued by the idea of linking a website to a film. Don’t look out for Just A Theory: The Movie at your local cinema any time soon, but I’ve definitely got a few ideas brewing…

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