PRIMARY SCIENCE

By David A. Cooper

Some parts of these science pages may be difficult to understand when you first read them, but don't let that put you off: you will be learning hundreds of times faster than you normally would. The quickest way up a hill is usually to take the steep path straight to the top, and although it might make you breathe hard all the way up, you are soon rewarded with a spectacular view from the summit. The normal way to learn in most schools is always to take a gentle route instead, a path that spirals slowly round and round the hill so that it hardly goes upwards at all: while this means you never get out of breath, it also means that it takes forever to reach the top. That may suit some people, but it uses up years of your life taking you in circles round the things you should be learning instead of just getting on with it. I think it's far better to work hard in short bursts, gaining knowledge fast and freeing up masses of time for doing other things. It's up to you, but once you have understood everything on these few pages, you will understand science far better than most adults.
Don't worry about trying to memorise any of the fancy new words that you meet here: just let them wash through your head and you will come to know them soon enough just by meeting them again and again. Your job is simply to try to understand everything you read here, so the journey should be enjoyable. If you get stuck with anything, try asking your friends or parents for help, and indeed there is much here that your parents probably don't know, so it would be a good idea to get them to read all the science pages with you (or even read them to you). There are a few diagrams here and there, but I really want you to try to create the images for yourself in your own mind.

1:
What is stuff made of? (Atoms, electrons, protons, neutrons, quarks.)

2: What is a molecule? (Water, carbon dioxide, methane.)

3: Solid, Liquid, Gas or Plasma? (Different states of matter.)

4: What is fire?

5: What is sound?

6: What is light?

7: What is colour?

8: What are taste and smell?

9: What is temperature?

10: What is pressure?

11: What is electricity?

12: What is life?

13: Why don't metal ships sink?

14: The water cycle.

15: The oxygen cycle.


What should you do once you have read all the above pages?

Make sure you come back to read them all again a couple of times so that all the information becomes fixed in your head properly. You might also find that you understand some things differently each time you read them, so it's very important that you read through them at least twice. Once you are sure that you have understood everything properly, you will have a very good overall understanding of science, but to take things further you will need to study the three specialist subjects of physics, chemistry and biology. In school you would normally be expected to study just two of these subjects, but now that learning has been made so much more efficient, you can study all three to the top level in a fraction of the time it used to take to do just two, so you have no excuse not to do all three of them.

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