Teaching methods


How Evolution Works

This video, embedded above, was a really cool way to explain evolution. This post isn’t so much about evolution itself as it is, per the title, about teaching methods. I personally find animations such as this one to be a highly effective method of conveying information, especially ones that have the potential for controversy.

By removing Humans from the equation, you remove all bias’s towards the humans. If this video had a human narrator standing in front of a screen telling this and point out different things, many people would get caught up in small judgments of the person.

“His hair is too long.”
“She’s too fat.”
“She’s too skinny.”
“He’s a neckbeard.”
“What a nerd.”

We’re all guilty of this to some degree. It is a part of our evolutionary nature of selecting mates. Unfortunately, this also means it can lead us to commit Genetic Fallacies and disregard the information being presented. By removing this distraction, we help our brains focus on the information being presented.

Another reason animations work so well, is that many Humans are visual learners. Reading something in a book can be difficult for some and downright impossible for others. Further, even the ones that can read, even if fluently, may not be able to grasp complex concepts from reading about them. They may love reading Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, but when it comes to reading a textbook, their brains jumble everything together and they can’t “get it”.

This makes video’s like this powerful tools in our efforts to educate people.

Now for my main complaint about this video. It contains an animated sex scene. Yes, its censored, but it still shows two animated bears having sex. This scene, while as funny as two animated bears having sex can be, is a distraction. It is unnecessary to the main point being given and makes the video unsuitable for young children. As a Homeschool parent, I was planning on showing this video to my kids, but then I saw that scene and now I can’t.

I’m not a prude and my two oldest, 8 & 7, both know what sex is, but they just don’t need to see it in action just yet.

What are your thoughts on this video? Would you show it to 7 & 8-year-olds?

Until next time, keep drinking the Kool-aid.

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