I came up with a game to use as an icebreaker. And I'd love ideas for future variations. It's a combination of Credence Calibration, 20 Questions, and Taboo. The children are trying to determine which of three possible states exist on the card which I have face down (for my first iteration, the possibilities will be "Cat", "Rat", and "Dog"). Every kid gets 30 poker chips to allocate to each of the three possibilities. Kids will then take turns asking a yes or no question, but before each Q, I roll a six sided die. If it comes up six, all chips placed on a wrong answer are turned in, otherwise, they ask their question, I answer with something on a scale of "Never" to "Always", and they are permitted to reallocate their chips. But there is a catch: they are not permitted to use certain words (i.e. cat, dog, rat, meow, bark, pet, etc.) in their questions.
The point is to find tests which can serve as evidence between the possibilities and recognize how confidence should change according to evidence.
Would be interested in other possible states for future iterations
So I really appreciate the lessons I've learned from "Rationality", but I wish I had learned them earlier in life. We are now homeschooling my kids, and I want to volunteer to teach my kids plus others who are interested lessons about thinking rationally.
Does anyone have recommendations on how to put together a curriculum which gets at the core ideas of rationality, but is oriented towards young kids? Some criteria:
Children will likely range from 7-11, meaning they should be simple concepts and require very little prior knowledge and only the simplest math.
Lessons should be interactive.
Lessons should include TRUE experiments (not just doing fun stuff with chemicals).
Lessons should be fun and appealing enough that parents will want to sign their kids up.
Any other suggestions on the course (wording that will be appealing without sounding too "nerdy" or alarming to the conservative types who usually homeschool) are welcome.
UPDATE: the Inflection Point Curriculum appears to be the middle school version of what I am looking to do: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1tcUJXRlZXeKjAWeU9Y37FcPKv3lj6PsX/view?usp=sharing
I currently envision the course as a combination of game type exercises like Credence Calibration, Zendo, and Meta-Forms, and experiments like adjusting the air composition of a room and investigating bernoulli effects using things like paper and shower curtains. Other ideas: investigating citrus batteries, water absorption by celery, and the light spectrum of various sources as split by a prism.
I like these ideas, and you're right that these KISS type questions are good at getting at the heart of mechanisms and generalizing outside of context.
I'll mention now though, that I've been rightly advised to not disregard the flashy stuff kids like to see, because it is effective at getting them excited about science. Do you have any specific recommendations on how to take some of the classic "experiments for kids!" stuff you can find with a google search and add in a dose of "construct a falsifiable model and attempt to falsify it"? Some way I can keep the flash, but still teach them to the importance of models which allow them to make bold predictions?