A team of scientists who proved that knives made of frozen poo don’t work are among the winners of this year’s Ig Nobel Prizes, celebrating the most unusual areas of medicine, science and technology.
The thought of squeaky alligators is all very funny but isn’t there a more serious point here? Research costs money so why are these frankly rather silly investigations being funded? Or is there no real harm in just finding answers to whatever questions spring to mind?
This resource pack features an article from The Week Junior newspaper about the awards, plus an activities sheet designed to get children thinking, talking and writing about what the story might mean for them.
- The thought of squeaky alligators is all very funny but isn’t there a more serious point here? Research costs money so why are these frankly rather silly investigations being funded? Wouldn’t that time and expertise be better spend looking into more serious problems? Or do you think that there’s no real harm in just finding answers to whatever questions spring to mind? What do you think?
- Write a short story about an alligator that accidentally ate a helium balloon that turned its voice squeaky. Perhaps you could imagine a situation in which it would have been helpful although you might want to acknowledge that the effects would soon wear off.
- Write a set of instructions for testing whether an alligator’s voice changes when it has breathed in a mixture of oxygen and helium.
- Research at least three useful scientific discoveries that were made by accident. Explain who the scientists were, what they were trying to do and how they noticed the effects they weren’t expecting.
Find the entire series of Topical Tuesday resources to download here.
What is The Week Junior?
The Week Junior magazine looks at current affairs and helps children make sense of the world, provides context and clarity to complex issues, improves general knowledge and encourages discussion and debate.
To find out more about The Week Junior and to download its free resources, please go to schools.theweekjunior.co.uk.