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National Science Foundation
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Overview of NSF's Informal Science Education program

Teen Café Scientifique

girl getting finger pricked

Why is there no cure for AIDS? Is a slime mold computer in your future? Could the world be free of nuclear weapons? Will climate change affect our water supply? These are some of the questions teens are exploring and debating as part of a youth directed Café Scientifique program in northern New Mexico. Teens in four New Mexico towns--Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Espanola and Los Alamos--gather twice each month to hear about a hot science topic of their choice, and then debate the merits of the discovery and its potential impact on their lives. Two weeks later, they re-engage with the topic through a hands-on activity. Some have gone to the biology lab to look at viruses and DNA, while others have taken field trips to the National Weather Service or television station. Ultimately, the teens lead the program while taking ownership of their learning.

Upcoming Events:

February 2010

"Diseases of the Brain"
Steven Lewis, University of New Mexico, College of Medicine

"Synapses: The Brain's Tiny Communication Centers"
Don Partridge & Kevin Caldwell, UNM College of Medicine

For more information, visit the New Mexico Teen Café at http://www.cafenm.org/index.html .



Credit: Michelle Hall, Science Education Solutions