Snopes tackles the worst science quiz ever. Is it real? Probably. No wonder science is no fun for these kids.
Circulating on the internet are these images of a supposed 4th grade science quiz from a religious-based school in South Carolina. It appears to be true.
Creationism is the disorder of the day. Dinosaurs lived with man, the earth is young, the ark was a real thing, dinosaurs were sheep-sized and God did it. The end.
Religious or not, to teach this as “science” is unconscionable. When parents deem that faith in one book is more important than learning about the world, the kids are doomed. Here is more on this story.
The unidentified dad tells Snopes that he was unaware his daughter was being taught fake science until she suddenly blurted out “were you there?” in response to a radio ad for an educational exhibit that started out by saying dinosaurs roamed the earth 65 million years ago.
The anonymous father insists the school, which is located “north of Greer” is great for “reading, writing, and math,” but not so much for science, as it turns out.
And Neurologica blog has a commentary on this:
For me this raises and interesting issue – can private schools teach anything they like? I understand parental freedom to teach their children their own beliefs and culture without government interference. That is an important part of freedom of religion. Here is my problem – parents are required by law to provide an education for their children. If they do not avail themselves of the public school system then they have to demonstrate that they are providing a suitable alternative (home schooling or a private school).
Here is a huge back door for teaching creationism – each state has their own criteria for private schools. Accreditation does not seem to be required. In any case, accrediting agencies are all private, and there are Christian accrediting organizations, all with little government oversight or guidelines.
Science is not trivial. If the school fails at science THIS dramatically (giving wrong information is worse than giving no information), how good they are with other subjects hardly makes up for it. The father reported to Snopes that the child will not attend this school next year. Some debriefing is in order for the kid, I think.
As an aside, how do you respond to the shallow and ignorant trope that Creationists use: “Were you there?” This is used by Creationist Ken Ham as if to say we must have first-hand observation of everything for it to be true. Were you there, Ken, when God created the earth? It’s a dumb question. And easy to throw it back on him.
We have converging lines of evidence from many different sciences that point to evolution as the explanation for life on earth and that the dinosaurs lived for a LONG time in many diverse forms and then went extinct. (Along with lots of other animals.) That’s BETTER than lame eyewitness testimony. Yet, if you go there, they will respond with “the Bible is inerrant word of God”. God doesn’t lie. Then, why did he plant all these fossils this way to make them look old? And, who created God? This is pointless.
I won’t get into a religious debate here but religion is not science and does not help us know about the natural world. The Bible is a crap textbook on nature. Belief is not scientific and does not belong in a science class.