Time to post the winner of the Science cookie giveaway.
I gave Sherry of sciencecookiecutters.com the entire week to sort through all the mountain of comments and emails and pick a winner. She emailed me Thursday night telling me she had picked a winner but announcing it completely slipped my mind on Friday, so we're doing a rare weekend post here on the blog.
After reading all the comments ( which were all great) and making sure they followed directions, I cut and pasted into a table then random.org'd it because I couldn't put a higher value on newton vs someone's dad!Totally understandable, Sherry. So the winning comment was...
Alice posted the following:
"Frank Oppenheimer.Congratulations, Alice!
Yes, Frank. Way cooler than his big brother, Robert.
As a kid, Frank idolised his brother. He followed him into physics, even working on the Manhattan Project with him. However, Frank lost his job as an academic scientist during the post-war "witch-hunts” and went off to be a cowboy instead.
(ok, really, he ran a cattle ranch, but I like the image. There were rumours that he was only targeted by McCarthyists because the energy lobby were after his brother. It's also worth noting that Frank seems to had v little connection with communists).
As an ex scientist he started helping out in the local school. He did more and more work, and eventually took over science teaching. He was inspirational and his fame grew. He used to start lessons on mechanics by taking kids to the local dump to find bits of old cars to take apart. He started running training for other teachers in the area, and via this route eventually found himself back in academia.
During a short sabbatical researching bubble chambers and history of physics at UCL he visited the many science museums of Europe. He wanted to build on the “hands-on” ideas applied in particular by the London Science Museum's children's gallery but developing them a step up from button-pushing. He added the hands-on approaches to education he'd developed and some science/ art interfaces.
By the end of the 1960s had opened his “Exploratorium” in San Francisco, which has become a model for science centers across the world (in part because of the very open approach they took to design).
You can visit a science museum/ center in most major cities and find the same arch bridge, "turntable" and optical illusions exhibits. It's all because of a physicist-cowboy-teacher-physicist with a famous big brother. "
I'm going to include a plug for your blog too, because I absolutely love it. Find Alice's writing on a range of science and society issues at Through the Looking Glass.