Exploring Science Through Literature with Madeleine L’Engle

wrinkle in timeHere at Solaster MB, we’re big believers in the ability of cross-disciplinary education. Science and the Humanities are so often intertwined that we think it’s hugely important to make sure we integrate the two as much as possible, rather than adhere to the traditional separation of quantitative and non-quantitative courses.

This is especially true when it comes to children’s education, since there are a number of creative and exciting ways to explain complex concepts to children, which can work extremely well by integrating arts and sciences.

There’s a great study by Carleton University on the benefits of cross disciplinary learning, if you want to read more about the topic.

Using A Wrinkle in Time to Teach Physics

One example of this philosophy is A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle.

We all know that physics is the “most difficult” science for students to grasp, and you most certainly can’t teach concepts like relativity and string theory to elementary school children…or can you?

A Wrinkle in Time does this job extremely well, by combining a bit of creative imagination with a fun story, and an underpinning of real life scientific principles, L’Engle takes children’s science education to a new level.

While students obviously aren’t memorizing E=mc**2 and other mathematical underpinnings, they do get an exposure to some of the weird, quirky ways in which our universe functions.

Having that conceptual framework is very important as they grow as learners, and can ultimately provide a great base for deeper study of physics, perhaps even at a much earlier age than is traditionally taught.

Instead of having physics be geared only for graduating high school seniors, why not include it into core middle and elementary level curriculum? That’s something we’d like to see more of.

To get the work, you can listen to listen to the audio of A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle at http://audiobooksforkids.org.

For a deeper discussion of the work, see the author’s panel conversation below:

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