Day is celebrated on February 12 - the birth date of Charles Robert
Darwin. Darwin traveled for five years aboard the HMS Beagle where
he explored the flora and fauna of South America, Australia and several
islands along the way. He investigated the landscapes, sent boxes
of specimens home to England for further study and kept detailed notes
of his observations. When he returned home he began intensive study
of his findings and twenty years later he produced a scientific theory
that would revolutionize our world. The theory of evolution by natural
selection has withstood 150 years of scientific scrutiny and continues
to make advancements through work in biology, genetics, geology, paleontology,
microbiology, anthropology and many other scientific disciplines.
Day recognizes and celebrates the achievements of a man who cast a
bright, explanatory light on reality, our self-knowledge, and on the
world of which we are a part. He contributed to our understanding
at the deepest level and forever changed the way we see ourselves
within the universe. He brought about a paradigm shift of epic proportions.
To Richard Dawkins, Darwin's theory of evolution is 'the universal
solvent.' To Ernst Mayr it 'has had a profound influence on modern
thought during the past 150 years.' For Daniel Dennett it is simply
'the greatest idea, ever.'
Darwin's life and work warrant a celebration of global extent. This
mere mortal symbolizes the brave, human enterprise of science in confronting
the mystery of existence. His life and work exemplify the spirit of
wonder, curiosity and adventure along with the excitement that the
quest for knowledge and understanding can provide.
incorporating an activity or lesson plan in the classroom on February
12 and join in the global celebrations for Darwin Day.
Detective Scavenger Hunt