Meet the team – Lauren Cochrane

Last year, as a way to intro­duce the TEDx­Can­ber­ra team to attendees and those watch­ing online, we ran a very suc­cess­ful series of posts where each of the core group showed their three favor­ite TEDTalks and explained why they has chosen those talks.

This year, we’re doing a sim­il­ar thing, only in keep­ing with our theme of Reflec­tions. Hap­pen­ings. Pre­dic­tions. each team mem­ber will reflect on one of their all-time favor­ite TEDTalks and show a new, hap­pen­ing, favor­ite that’s been pos­ted since TEDx­Can­ber­ra 2010.

AnnMar­ie Thomas: Hands-on sci­ence with squishy cir­cuits

AnnMar­ie Thomas demon­strates how sim­ple homemade play dough can be used to teach kids, big and small, about elec­tric­al prop­er­ties. The abil­ity to make les­sons about elec­tron­ics so tan­gible, access­ible and fun is so fas­cin­at­ing – I wish I had this play and learn oppor­tun­ity as a child. As an adult get­ting in to elec­tron­ics now, I can see how using these sim­ple tools can break down the men­tal bar­ri­ers of “scary sci­en­cey stuff” that young girls par­tic­u­larly could have.

Ron Gut­man: The hid­den power of smil­ing

Ron Gut­man explores stud­ies that show a depend­ency between peoples’ smiles in pho­tos and their suc­cess and longev­ity. It reminds me that I need to smile more!

And finally, one of my favour­ite TED talks of all time is James Randi’s fiery take­down of psych­ic fraud. I briefly met Mr Randi when he vis­ited Aus­tralia last year, and was too star­struck to do any­thing but giggle as he per­formed the coin-from-behind-the-ear trick on me. Such a bril­liant man who speaks out again­st the scam artists of the world. This fas­cin­at­ing talk is a funny, insight­ful look into irra­tion­al beliefs.

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