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RE: enough already

> From: owner-dinosaur@usc.edu [mailto:owner-dinosaur@usc.edu]On Behalf Of
> Jeff Hecht
> The real culprits, as Phil Bigelow said, are often well-intentioned teachers 
> who ask students to contact scientists or
> writers and ask them questions. I've heard a number of children's book 
> writers complain about "contact your favorite
> writer" assignments that fill their mailboxes. Most of us don't mind the 
> occasional question, particularly thoughtful
> ones. But rote assigned questions are a different matter. -- Jeff Hecht


Additionally, the easy access allowed by the internet has given teachers, and 
thus their students, the idea that research is best
done by emailing experts rather than looking up the information in print. So 
towards the end of whenever those assignments are due,
I get barraged with emails that boil down to "can you do your homework for me?"

Although I don't blame the kids so much as the teachers and parents. And 
sometimes the assignments aren't well thought through, such
as trying to find out all the minutiae of the behavior of Megaraptor (!!?!?) to 
asking about whether Eohippus protected its eggs (I
almost understand that one: "Eohippus" lived in the prehistoric past, dinosaurs 
lived in the prehistoric past, dinosaurs are
interpreted as protecting their eggs, therefore...).

So here's my plug: books! They're cool! For thousands of years print in some 
form or other have allowed text to be passed on to
future generations. Be part of that tradition! Read a book!!

                Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
        Senior Lecturer, Vertebrate Paleontology
Department of Geology           Director, Earth, Life & Time Program
University of Maryland          College Park Scholars
        Mailing Address:
                Building 237, Room 1117
                College Park, MD  20742

Phone:  301-405-4084    Email:  tholtz@geol.umd.edu
Fax (Geol):  301-314-9661       Fax (CPS-ELT): 301-405-0796