SciNews, Thursday, June 23, 2016

Healthcare providers wash well when watched; children’s brains buzz when they hear mothers’ voices; El Nino increases carbon dioxide; moving to ‘all video’ in 5 years; cats understand cause and effect; astronauts on Mars still 20 years away – just a few of the themes in today’s eclectic collection of SciNews.  Share these stories with your students and get them excited about science.

SciNews is published twice weekly. Stay tuned for more.

7308778_s from 123rfBiology

Healthcare providers are half as likely to wash their hands well when you are not watching. Science Daily

When healthcare providers know they are being watched, they are twice as likely to comply with hand hygiene guidelines. This is in comparison to when healthcare providers do not know someone is watching, according to a new study. This phenomenon — called The Hawthorne Effect — impacts the ability to capture accurate human behavior because individuals modify their actions when they know they are being observed.  Read more…

Moms’ voices get big reactions in kids’ brains. Science News

Any parent trying to hustle a school-bound kid out the door in the morning knows that her child’s skull possesses a strange and powerful form of black magic: It can repel parents’ voices. Important messages like “find your shoes” bounce off the impenetrable fortress and drift unheeded to the floor.  Read more…


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El Nino drives fastest annual increase on record of carbon dioxide. Science Daily

The rising concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide has passed a symbolic threshold early due to the fastest annual increase on record, report scientists.  Read more…


18685938_s from 123rf

Facebook says it will be ‘all video’ in 5 years as people abandon text. CBC

In August 1981, a single company changed the way an entire generation got its music, news, and views of the world when it launched with the song Video Killed the Radio Star, declaring radio dead.

MTV and its novel, 24/7 music video channel format went on to become a juggernaut force of culture throughout the ’80s, leading a shift in media consumption habits among youth that, rather uniquely, couldn’t be credited to a new type of communication technology.  Read more…

Cats seem to grasp the laws of physics. Science Daily

Cats understand the principle of cause and effect as well as some elements of physics. Combining these abilities with their keen sense of hearing, they can predict where possible prey hides.  Read more…

Earth and Space Science12693495_s from 123rf

The ultimate getaway — visiting the Red Planet. Science News for Students

There is a long-standing joke that NASA is always 20 years from putting astronauts on Mars. Mission details shared at a recent gathering of experts now show that the space agency is still hewing to a 20-year timetable. A to-do list from 2015 looks remarkably similar to one put together a quarter-century earlier. One difference: NASA is now building a rocket and test-driving technologies needed to land a crew on Mars — or at least very near to it.  Read more…

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