Teen Skepchick's Reality Checks

Teen Skepchick’s Reality Checks 4.12

The Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité? edition The ban on full-face veils has begun in France among modest protest. “The law forbids clothing intended to hide the face in public spaces such as streets, markets, private business, government buildings and public transportation. Violators may be punished with a fine of 150 euros, equivalent …

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Teen Skepchick's Reality Checks

Teen Skepchick’s Reality Checks 4.11

The Improving Scientific Literacy edition A new source for teachers to help identify common scientific misconceptions. “A new web site is taking aim at this challenge, providing educators with quick lists of scientific statements broken down by subject matter, highlighting concepts that tend to be misunderstood by students. ‘This is …

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Teen Skepchick's Reality Checks

Teen Skepchick’s Reality Checks 4.8

The Sleepless, Sightless Fish edition Blind cavefish in Mexico developed sleeplessness on three independent occasions. “[Erik] Duboué compared blind fish from three separate caves – Pachón, Tinaja, and Molino – as well as one of their sighted surface cousins. He found that the surface fish sleep for an enviable 13 …

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Teen Skepchick's Reality Checks

Teen Skepchick’s Reality Checks 4.7

The Lost Girls edition India’s girl problem. “According to the latest national headcount, there are now just 914 girls for every 1,000 boys under the age of six, down from a ratio of 927 for every 1,000 a decade ago. Despite India’s steady economic rise in the past 10 years, …

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Teen Skepchick's Reality Checks

Teen Skepchick’s Reality Checks 4.6

The Man v. Volcano edition Volcanologists try to predict when a volcano will erupt. “After a full day of hiking, [Ken] Sims and [Dario] Tedesco reached the barren, wind-wracked summit rim. A long line of porters hauled camping gear, climbing equipment, scientific instruments, food, and water. From here, the scientists …

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Teen Skepchick's Reality Checks

Teen Skepchick’s Reality Checks 4.5

The Nuclear Waste edition Scientists find that pond algae could lead to breakthroughs in cleaning up nuclear waste. “The researchers are the first to show quantitatively how Closterium moniliferum, one of the bright green algae often seen in ponds, sequesters strontium (in the form of barium-strontium-sulfate crystals). They are using …

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Teen Skepchick's Reality Checks

Teen Skepchick’s Reality Checks 4.4

The Godless Soldier edition Atheist soldiers fight for recognition. “In fact, atheists, agnostics, humanists and other assorted skeptics from the Army’s Fort Bragg have formed an organization in a pioneering effort to win recognition and ensure fair treatment for nonbelievers in the overwhelmingly Christian U.S. military. ‘We exist, we’re here, …

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Teen Skepchick's Reality Checks

Teen Skepchick’s Reality Checks 4.2

The Search for a Goldilocks Planet edition Habitable planets may not need a Sun-like star. “But sun-like stars may not be the only game in town, as far as habitability is concerned. In a study in the April 20 issue of The Astrophysical Journal Letters, astronomer Eric Agol of the …

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