17 Oct, 19 tweets, 6 min read
1/ Tweeting live to give a peek into the 'Connecting the Dots' course from @GenWise_ A math assignment 'Journey to Lilliput' is being discussed. The 1st question is easy- it asks what is that single number factor which can be used to scale Gulliver's world down to Lilliput...
2/ Most children answer this correctly, but some use a factor of 3 to convert sq.ft to sq. m instead of using 3 x 3
3/ A discussion is happening on how wide national highways in India are...building on width of a single lane. A cute but perceptive discussion that ' We don't think Lilliput would have 6 lane highways'...so making a comparison to our smaller roads done
4/ Some discussion happens now on how tall a single storey is...
5/ There are interesting answers to how large the palace should be...
6/ One student proposes a 5ft x 5 ft palace... a discussion ensues on how large a palace should be...
7/ The teacher says any particular sizes are ok for an individual thing but stresses that the sizes need to be consistent with other elements in that world....The number of people in the Lilliputian city is now discussed
8/ Most students agree that the city is too congested for Lilliputians comparing to population densities in our world. I think through this assignment & this discussion, students have started realizing that scaling from 'one world' to 'another' is not so simple
9/ Different kinds of 'non-proportional' variation are discussed
10/ Different questions are posed... including how does surface area with volume?
11/ A discussion now on how much food Gulliver will need...a student points out that 12^3 = 1728 and not 1724 and the teacher says "Yes, Jonathan Swift probably made a mistake.... Most students invoke food needed per volume which makes sense, gives a multiplier of 1728 but now...
12/ The teacher invokes JBS Haldane- food supply should be proportional to your surface area and not your weight! Because it is about heat/ energy loss.... a different paradigm emerges
13/ One student rightly points out that Lilliputians were feeding Gulliver the equivalent of 36 meals a day! because they did not understand the right scaling for food needs.. follow the surface area NOT volume! The teacher shows how Lilliputians consequently eat 12 times we do
13/ Lilliputians would need to eat all the time and would not have the time to attend GenWise classes 😂 quips the teacher.. she asks now if such beings as 'Lilliputs' can exist? Dots between Math-scaling and Life/ Biology starting to connect...
13/ Now the teacher moves to Brobdignag and the giants....& what dimensions of legs are needed to support the giant's weight? The cross-sectional area of the supporting bones is crucial. Enlarging things proprtionately is just not working!!
14/ The class is now coming to an end... the teacher show the students a spreadsheet...where different relationships can be visualized....these tools should help students to explore such relationships better
15/ As the cube grows bigger... SA/ Volume ratio falls down. So smaller animals have larger surface area compared to a larger animal... that is why when a beetle jumps into water, a lot of water collects on it & so it might drown because of the weight!
16/ ....Beetles in polar regions would die because they would lose too much heat...that is why you find larger animals in polar regions...

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# More from @vishnu_agni

13 Sep
1/ I just watched 'The Social Dilemma' on Netflix & also started reading 'Calling Bullshit' some days ago. Everybody should watch the film, understand how our 'attention is being extracted', how dangerous this can be and think about how we can change things...
2/ "..never before in history have 50 designers 20-35 yr-old white guys in California made decisions that have an impact on 2 billion people...who will have thoughts that they didn't intend to have because a designer at Google said, "This is how notifications work on that screen
3/ ..that you wake up to in the morning." So do I realize that I am in very real danger of not being myself any more, of not thinking my own thoughts? That the machine stands to gain from "addiction, polarization, radicalization, outragification, vanitification.."
14 Jun
1/A ban on online classes doesn’t make sense. We’ve seen several positives in the 30+ courses we have conducted @GenWise_ so far- great peer discussions, the quietest students engaging with teachers on chat and even real world explorations! Examples later in this thread
2/As with anything else- the quality of the experience and the ‘quantity of consumption’ decides whether it is good or bad. The lower the age, the more wary we should be of screen time. Educating parents will work far better than regulating schools. #righttolearn @nimmasuresh
3/After all, it is the parent who is the systems integrator- he/ she knows how much time has been spent on phones, TV, computer screens etc., how much physical play has been there, the uniqueness of his child, and can make the best choice. #righttolearn @HRDMinistry @PMOIndia
21 Jan
1) A 14 tweet story about a lake that exploded suddenly and mysteriously without warning... with important takeaways for education. (Some pictures inside this thread)
2) In 1986, Lake Nyos in Cameroon erupted killing 1800 people + 3500 livestock in a 19 km radius. Bodies were burnt; survivors had eye lesions, neurological problems, paralysis of lower limbs. Similar events at nearby Lake Monoun on a smaller scale in 1984
3) Eyewitnesses of Lake Nyos disaster reported- very hard rain that stopped at 930 PM; rumbling sound & smell like gunpowder + rotten eggs; people ran around and dropped dead; many lost consciousness for 6-16 hours
1 Jan
1/ A friend's 23 yo girl looking to find a marriage partner, asked me for tips. Here's what I said.... Please comment/add your tips. Be as clear as possible on why you want to get married. Everybody doesn't need to get married. Don't get married because everyone else is...
2/ If you are going the 'arranged' marriage route, meet prospects who interact directly with you (not through their parents or relatives), spend time and decide... If you or your prospective partner cannot take responsibility for evaluating partners themselves, it's a red flag...
3/ Never interact with multiple prospects at the same time. You cannot/ should not compare people. If one doesn't work out, wait a while and meet the next person. Your attitude of commitment to one person (not comparing) changes the other person and you
25 Dec 19
1/ Much to chew on in this brilliant episode bit.ly/2QijqQL of @sfiscience podcast where @rajivatbarnard is interviewed on the complex system of bias, crime, and criminal justice in the US. Some insights for me...
2/ Stereotyping is a cognitive necessity, but we can become more aware of the process and can be more willing to question the stereotypes that we hold. e.g. 'Pseudosecular' and 'Bhakts' are buckets we put people into.. but does it capture the tapestry of thoughts in these groups?
3/ People who are negatively stereotyped face a lot of dangers in our society. Thus police may use more force against blacks. e.g. Was Jamia at the receiving end perceived as a 'Muslim protest'? See what Mukul Kesavan says- bit.ly/2ZmmqzM