Quiz: Do You Know More Science Than Most Americans?
Why is the sky blue? How do airplanes fly? What causes the ocean waves?
Many of the first questions children ask their parents are science-related. So it helps to have a little science knowledge to field these “how” and “why” types of questions that can challenge even the smartest of parents.
Of course, a basic understanding of science is important beyond just answering children’s questions—it’s an essential part of many jobs and technological advances. And everyone uses science in their daily lives, regardless of their occupation or interest. From inventions like the smartphone to boiling water to treating a cut, science is everywhere.
Despite the importance of science, however, not everyone is up-to-date on basic scientific facts. According to a 2014 National Science Foundation survey, 26 percent of Americans surveyed thought that the sun revolves around Earth.
A more recent Pew Research study found that Americans did better with some basic science questions, such as concepts about Earth’s core and how nuclear energy is made, but many had trouble with other concepts, like what a light-year measures.
Find out how much science you know with these ten questions based on the science facts that were part of that Pew Research Study. Then test your children’s knowledge. Once you’ve taken the quiz, you can view all the answers and see what percentage of Americans answered them correctly in the Pew study. Or scroll down to click on each question for the answers and get a refresher on these basic science concepts.
Click on each question below to reveal the answers:
Elizabeth Street is a writer and managing editor for Learning Liftoff. For the past 20 years, she has written newsletter and website content for nonprofit and corporate organizations on such topics as the plight of children of prisoners worldwide, the lack of prenatal care for mothers in developing countries, and child mentoring programs. She has a particular interest in the importance of providing all children with a quality education regardless of their family’s financial status or background. A native of Virginia, Elizabeth is a graduate of James Madison University and loves animals, with particular fondness for her two cats, Oscar and Emmy.