Recently, two news stories have caught my attention.
The first is the story of a family that was found semi-conscious in an apartment building. Earlier in the day, it was reported that the mother was cooking indoors on a charcoal grill. This set off a neighbor’s carbon monoxide detector. After banging on the family’s door without receiving a response, the neighbor then alerted 911.
The second was of a woman who had been living in a home for 11 months without power or water. When asked how she kept warm during this recent cold snap, she reported that she used a camping propane heater indoors. She knew that if she was to use a propane heater in this manner, she would have to crack a window. She also went on to say that even though it brought more cold air in, she did have an area in the house where she could experience warmth.
There are many possible culprits in the aforementioned stories. The sluggish economy and the lack of suitable, gainful employment could be cited as two. I would like to venture to say there is yet another in at least one of the stories—lack of knowledge.
There are some things that are just known. There are some things that are taught. In a society where those things that some people just know seem to be less and less every day, there has to be another avenue in which to gather vital information.
Where did you learn about carbon monoxide poisoning? Did you learn about it in school? Did you learn about it at home? If students are not taught at home, school, and there is no Mr. Wizard or Bill Nye the Science Guy to fascinate them, where will they learn about it? Where will today’s youth learn about it if schools keep up this current trend of not introducing Science education until there is an impending End-of-Grade (EOG) or End-of-Course (EOC) test?
Carbon monoxide poisoning and a host of other concepts, ideas, and theories are elementary Science. We all need to know it!