BrainBuzz explores the science of fun


Scientist Clare Van Dorssen will answer the burning questions through her new TV show BrainBuzz.Scientist Clare Van Dorssen is on a mission to teach children, without them even realising it, in TV show BrainBuzz.

The passionate scientist hosts the show alongside TV presenter Kellyn Morris, with the aim of entertaining children who tune in, while solving some of the world’s most frequently asked scientific questions.

“We call it ‘science by stealth’. We try to cover every topic in a diverse way with the intention of capturing the interest of as many children as we can,” Van Dorssen said.

Every morning, the pair cover subjects such as marsupials, the brain, physics and cars in a variety of interesting ways.

“In every episode we ask questions that have come from children who want answers,” she said.

“They can be extremely diverse, ranging from ‘How do rollercoasters work?’ to ‘Can we live on Mars?’

“After we come up with a topic for an episode, I go to my mental bank of science experiments or, if that fails me, I talk to my colleagues and see if they have seen anything that they want to try. I like to mix classic with new, and always go bigger when I can.”

The show highlights how diverse science can be, while showing how it fits into the world around us. It stimulates children’s natural curiosity in the topic, according to Van Dorssen.

“Kids don’t need any help getting excited about science because they already are scientists,” she said.

“They’re constantly looking around, asking questions and exploring. We just need to make sure that we keep encouraging this attitude.”

The key to fuelling that interest is through action, and getting children involved, according to the scientist.

“I’ve found that if you are trying to get someone interested in science, it’s not the explanation that’s important, it’s the demonstration and self-exploration,” she said.

“It’s easily more important for a child to be hands-on in their own interaction with science than it is for scientists like me to spend an hour telling them why something happened.”

* BrainBuzz airs on weekdays at 8am (AEST) on 9GO! and 9NOW.

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