And we’re back!
After a few weeks of blissful freedom from noisy teenagers the government has demanded that we return to school and continue working. As painful as that usually is I at least know that it means spending more time with the SceptiKids.
We had our first session this afternoon and I was pleased to see a group of first timers. Instead of the normal twenty or so students there were almost forty crammed into the room today. A few were older kids who were aware of the club but hadn’t visited before and others were new year 7s. It’s always nice seeing new people coming along, whether they are friends of members or newbies who want to check it out.
This year we are starting by talking about aliens. From questions of their existence to evidence of UFOs. We began by discussing whether or not we thought aliens existed at all. We defined an alien as any living organism that was born on and had evolved to survive on another planet. Most people agreed that given how many planets there are estimated to be in the universe (roughly 1024) the chances of there being no life at all seems pretty slim. We weren’t even talking about sentient, communicating life either. We’d be happy with simple bacteria.
One important point we considered however was the fact that at this stage of human existence, nobody knows what the answer is. As unlikely as life is we have no yet of telling whether it’s out there or not. Some of the students have seen TV shows that have left them thinking that life was discovered on Titan but hopefully sessions like today will enable to recognise what is real and what is a ratings grabber.
At this stage the discussion changed somewhat. We had a meaningful conversation about whether a pregnant lady would have an alien if she gave birth on Mars which of course led to musings on the mechanics of zero-gravity labour.