TickTock asked me to go into a bit more detail on Skeptikids: how we organized, how we got into the schools, how much time commitments are a problem, etc. I’m going to try to give some advice on how to do a DIY Kids Science and Skepticism group over the next few posts.
One comment I hear a lot is, “I would love to start something like this, but I don’t know enough like minded parents.” You are selling yourself short by operating only within families of self-identified Skeptics. This isn’t a church group-there’s no common belief system required. Only a common interest in Science is needed, the rest follows on its own!
So the first thing you need to start a Kids Program are- Kids! Go after kids of your friends and friends of your kids. Build up a group of about 6-10 children if you can. At this size, you can keep things small, flexible and cheap. More importantly, a small group early on can act as a sandbox for you to figure out what they like, what works, logistics etc.
If you want to grow bigger though, there is no better way than working with the schools. I’ll go into more detail about how to do that on a separate post, but let me just say that in my experience, ANY school would welcome a science and critical thinking program. If you have a clear program with simple, laid out objectives, you will find yourself very well recieved.
I have more interested kids and adults than I can handle, and I market mostly to the general public. In fact, I don’t really know any “Skeptical Parents” where I live. Don’t forget that only a few of us identify ourselves that way, but pretty much all people consider themselves critical thinkers, and most people are interested in technology. So Don’t Limit Yourself!
Lesson 2 coming soon!