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Author Topic:   Should we teach both evolution and religion in school?
Blue Jay
Member (Idle past 2780 days)
Posts: 2843
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008

Message 33 of 2073 (573432)
08-11-2010 12:09 PM
Reply to: Message 20 by archaeologist
08-11-2010 8:19 AM

Hi, Archaeologist.
Welcome to EvC! It's been a rough start so far.
Let me explain to you why I feel that evolution should be allowed in science classes, but not creation.
You say prediction is not helpful in science. But, being able to use a theory to predict what you will find in the future is a pretty good indication of the usefulness of the theory, isn't it?
Look at Tiktaalik again. You said they discovered a partial skull, but, in actuality, they discovered 3 skeletons, one of which included the entire animal except its hind limbs and tail.
This discovery is important for a number of reasons. Scientists wanted to find a fossil that fit between elpistostegalian fish that had been dated to 380 million years ago, and the earliest amphibians, which had been dated to 360-365 million years ago.
They found some rocks that had been dated to between those time periods, and which were hypothesized to have been part of the coastal ecosystems of the time period where they thought they would find this intermediate animal.
And, they found a fossil (three of them, actually) that fit their predictions, in the place where they predicted they would find it. The fossil’s anatomy fits comfortably between the anatomy of the fish and of the amphibians, and it provided a plausible model to explain the ecological processes that drove the transition between aquatic and terrestrial modes of living based on characteristic structures of the fossil.
I can’t understand why you think predictions are not important for science. The ultimate goal of science is finding a framework of understanding that gives us the best insights into the workings of the natural world, and allows us to make use of this understanding to improve the condition of life in the future. The best way to meet this goal is to develop theories that can guide future work (i.e. make predictions).
It seems like you want science to be taught as a collection of assorted facts about nature. I can’t imagine what you think the point of such an approach would be: a source of bedtime stories, maybe? Fodder for quizzes and exams?
Don’t you agree that a larger, more structured, more useful approach makes much more sense?
Shouldn’t we be teaching ideas that can give insights into the future (i.e. can make predictions)?
If we’re not, why bother teaching them anything at all?

-Bluejay (a.k.a. Mantis, Thylacosmilus)
Darwin loves you.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 20 by archaeologist, posted 08-11-2010 8:19 AM archaeologist has not replied

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