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Engines of Our Ingenuity


Found In: science, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

The eyes of a paper wasp.

The eyes of a paper wasp.

Engines of Our Ingenuity is a long running public radio program that describes how art, technology, and ideas have shaped the world we live in. The transcripts are best for students in grades 5-12, but younger students can learn from the audio files.

Each episode (approx. 4 minutes) can be listened to on the Internet. An illustrated transcript is also available. A recent episode, No. 2877: What Bees See has close up photos of bees and other insects revealing their compound eyes and ocelli, elementary single-lens eyes that don’t distinguish form but sense light and dark with great speed. Highlighted terms, concepts, and details are linked to extended explanations.

There are two ways to access programs and transcripts. Engines Transcripts lists programs in 50 episode blocks that can be browsed. Clicking a block, 1 to 49 for example, provides a list of episode titles. Some of the titles reveal their subject more clearly than others. A second access point, Full Titles of Episodes, with Keywords, permits searching for specific material. A keyword search for “steam engine,” for example, produced 50 hits.

Engines Extras has links to technical papers; materials for the classroom, including Women in Science, Technology, and the Life of the Mind; and free downloadable audio files of the programs for classroom use.

 

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