While looking for a new challenge question for this week, Mr. Weber came across a really interesting website:
The flame challenge began a couple of years ago when actor (and founding member of Stony Brook University’s Center for Communicating Science) Alan Alda was wondering about a question he had when he was 11 years old: “What is a flame?” He had been told by a teacher that it was “oxidation”, but he didn’t really understand what that meant. At all. So Alda presented scientists all over the globe with a challenge: explain what a flame is to an 11 year old (i.e. in everyday language.)
Much to everyone’s surprise, this creative competition was a big hit, and over 800 entries were submitted. After screening for scientific accuracy, the challenge was judged by thousands of real-life 11 year olds. Click here to check out the winners of the first annual Flame Challenge question “What is a flame?”
The next year, instead of asking the question himself, he crowdsourced the question from — you guessed it — actual 11 year olds. The question that came out on top was: “What is time?” Click here to check out the winners of the 2013 Flame Challenge.
This year, students from around the world challenged scientists to explain to them: “What is colour?”
Entries needed to be submitted by March 1, 2014. Do you think you could provide a winning explanation?