DiscoverBut Why: A Podcast for Curious Kids
But Why: A Podcast for Curious Kids
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But Why: A Podcast for Curious Kids

Author: Vermont Public Radio

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But Why is a show led by kids. They ask the questions and we find the answers. It’s a big interesting world out there. On But Why, we tackle topics large and small, about nature, words, even the end of the world. Know a kid with a question? Record it with a smartphone. Be sure to include your kid's first name, age, and town and send the recording to questions@butwhykids.org!
115 Episodes
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We're answering 9 questions that put a smile on our faces, and we hope they make you chuckle, too. Plus, you might actually learn something from some of the answers! Are llamas ticklish? Why do pickles and cacti look alike? What are boogers made out of? How do fish see underwater without goggles? Do skunks like their smell? Do pigs poop? Are elephants afraid of mice? Are jellyfish made of jelly? Why are yawns contagious? Guests include Jo Blasi from the New England Aqarium, naturalist Marry Holland, therapy llama-handler Shannon Joy, and Elephant Listening Project researcher Peter Wrege.
We’re sharing an episode of a Vermont Public Radio's Brave Little State. We know many of you are experiencing some changes now that schools in lots of states and countries are closed to slow the spread of COVID-19. For some families this is the first time you’ve had to try to do something like school at home. But others of you might do homeschooling all the time; and you’ve probably got some great advice for families who are new to this routine! This episode of Brave Little State brought together two families to talk about how to make the shift.
As COVID-19 spreads across the globe, the World Health Organization has declared the novel coronavirus a pandemic. We’re answering questions about the virus with infectious disease doctor Krutika Kuppalli, who studies global pandemics. And chemistry professor Palli Thordarson, from the University of New South Wales on the science of why washing your hands with plain old soap and water is so effective against germs.
Why do people dream? Why do people have nightmares? How do dreams happen? Can people who are blind can see in their dreams? We're listening back to our episode about dreams with psychiatrist Dr. David Kahn of Harvard Medical School.
How Do We Fall Asleep?

How Do We Fall Asleep?

2020-02-1426:349

Why do people need to sleep? How do we actually go to sleep? How does sleeping get rid of toxins in the brain? And how come when it's nighttime I don't want to go to sleep but when it's morning I don't want to wake up? Those questions and more, all about sleep. We're highlighting an episode from 2018 with pediatric sleep psychologist Dr. Lisa Meltzer. And stay tuned; our next episode is all about dreams!
Curious kids are hearing about the impeachment trial of US President Donald Trump. So But Why is helping them understand what impeachment is and what happens when a president is impeached. We'll explain why impeachment is an important part of the US constitution and why impeaching a president doesn't mean removing him or her from office. Our guests for this episode are Loyola Law School professor and legal analyst Jessica Levinson and Kenneth C. Davis, author of Don't Know Much About History and other books.
Do Animals Get Married?

Do Animals Get Married?

2020-01-1727:024

Do animals get married? Do they fall in love and have friends? Do they laugh when they're happy and cry when they're sad? When you talk to your pets, can they understand you? Why can't they speak to us? And do animals know what kind of animal they are? Alyssa Arre of the Comparative Cognition Lab at Yale tackles these interesting questions.
Why Do Lions Roar?

Why Do Lions Roar?

2020-01-0317:399

Why do lions roar? Why do crickets chirp? Why do bucks shed their antlers every year? How can porcupines and hedgehogs avoid poking themselves? Do fish pee? What is the fastest fish? What do jellyfish eat? A roundup of animal questions, with answers from Paola Bouley of Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique, Kent McFarland of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies, naturalist Mary Holland and Jo Blasi of the New England Aquarium.
How Do We Taste Food?

How Do We Taste Food?

2019-12-2023:544

Why do we like to eat certain foods? Why do some people like to eat spicy food? And what's up with kids not liking vegetables? Why does pineapple hurt your mouth when you eat too much of it? Why do we taste things and how? Why do different foods taste different? Do animals have the same taste buds as people? In this episode of But Why we get answers to all of those questions from chef, author, and TV personality Chris Kimball, Dr. Leslie Stein of the Monell Chemical Senses Center, and Vermont-based chef and cookbook author Matthew Jennings.
Why Are Some Words 'Bad'?

Why Are Some Words 'Bad'?

2019-12-0624:0711

In this episode, we tackle why some words are "bad". Plus: Why do people say bad words? Why aren't kids allowed to say cuss words? Why is the middle finger bad? And adults, don't worry, we won't actually be using any bad words in this episode! But we will explore the psychology and brain science behind bad words with Benjamin Bergen, professor of cognitive science at University of California, San Diego. He's the author of What the F: What Swearing Reveals About Our Language, Our Brains, and Ourselves.
How does water turn into ice? Why is ice sometimes slippery and other times sticky? Why is it so cold? Why does it float? How are icicles made? Why are icebergs mostly underwater? What was the ice age? We'll get answers to all of those questions with help from Celeste Labedz of the California Institute of Technology. And we'll take a trip to the world's largest skating rink, the Rideau Canal in Ottawa, Ontario.
How do weather people predict the weather and know what's going to happen tomorrow? Why is a meteorologist called a meteorologist? We learn about weather forecasting with National Weather Service Meteorologist Jessica Neiles and NBC5 Chief Meteorologist Tom Messner.
Are Unicorns Real?

Are Unicorns Real?

2019-10-2523:019

Are unicorns real? Who made them up? Where do they come from? What do they eat, how big are they, and do they have rainbow manes? We're answering all of your questions about unicorns-and learning about other mythical creatures as well with Adam Gidwitz, creator of The Unicorn Rescue Society and Dana Simpson cartoonist and author of Phoebe and Her Unicorn.
In this episode we're answering a few short questions about animals! Are jellyfish made of jelly? Do fish stink in the water or on land? Where do fish sleep? Do chickens have tongues? Can spiders sleep or not? How many types of animals are there in the world? Do snakes live in Antarctica? Is a springbok faster than a grizzly bear? Do skunks have big tails or small tails?
Why does school exist? When did kids start going, and why is it mandatory? Why are there 12 grades in school? Why do we call teachers by their last names? In this episode, we get schooled on school by sociologist Emily Rauscher and National Teacher of the Year Rodney Robinson.
How Are Noodles Made?

How Are Noodles Made?

2019-09-1321:337

This week, we answer a question from 4-year-old Hugo in Burlington, Vt. Hugo wants to know how noodles are made. But he's about to get more than he bargained for! For this episode we visit a restaurant called M.Y. China, in San Francisco, CA to watch executive chef Tony Wu hand-pull 16,000 noodles in 2 minutes. The restaurant's owner, chef Martin Yan of the PBS show Yan Can Cook narrates the action. And to give us some historical context, Jen Lin-Liu, author of On the Noodle Road: From Beijing to Rome with Love and Pasta, shares her insight.
How Is Paper Made?

How Is Paper Made?

2019-08-3028:252

How is paper made from trees? Why does paper fall apart when it gets wet? Why does it lose color in the sun? Who invented paper? We make a few sheet of paper and learn all about how it's made with artist Carol Marie Vossler at BluSeed Studios in Saranac Lake, New York.
This episode is all about bugs! We've gotten a lot of questions from you about insects and other critters. So we're tackling them with the help of Jessica Honaker and Kristie Reddick, otherwise known as the Bug Chicks.
Why do earthquakes happen? How do the tectonic plates move underground? How do we stay safe during an earthquake? Why are continents so far apart? Why do buildings sometimes catch fire after earthquakes? Why are there tsunamis after earthquakes? For this week's show we headed to California to visit Jennifer Strauss at the Berkeley Seismology Lab and we hear from Celeste Labedz at the California Institute of Technology.
How Do Circuits Work?

How Do Circuits Work?

2019-07-1923:362

How do circuits work? How do electric plugs work? Why do some things conduct electricity and some things do not? How does a battery make a phone work? How do lights turn on? Where do electrons go when the electricity is off? How fast is electricity? How do light bulbs work? How does solar power work? How do electric cars work? Why is electricity dangerous? Electrical Engineer Paul Hines answers our questions for the second half of our electricity live call-in program. Hines is a professor at the University of Vermont and co-founder of Packetized Energy.
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Comments (43)

mayank bhatta

You guys give out very interesting podcasts and I listen to them with lots of interest

Mar 28th
Reply

mayank bhatta

This is a very good podcast. I learn a lot from this But Why and my Dad has intrest listening to this podcast. But how do I send questions to you?

Mar 25th
Reply

assaf bester

wild Kratts

Nov 26th
Reply (2)

Heather Boylen

We love you Mr. Gidwitz!!! Please come to Atlanta!

Oct 26th
Reply

taravat jalalifarahani

i'm a serious fan of (but why) and (brains on). they are useful, even for adults.

Aug 31st
Reply (1)

Gayathri Prabhath

Thank you Girls..

Jun 11th
Reply

Code: Fearlicia

hi

May 29th
Reply

Code: Fearlicia

*whistles*

May 24th
Reply

Erica Ervine

but why does most of our stuff come from china

May 8th
Reply

Ryan & Emma Nowell

awesome

Apr 19th
Reply

James Minnion

James.minnion@gmail.com and a very nice one thanks for they will be back in touch with the other one soon and I will be back in touch with the other one tomorrow to see if they can help me with the application form and b to the court to be done by the end of the week

Mar 29th
Reply

James Minnion

Smash boom best

Mar 27th
Reply

Hugh Han

good for english learners~

Mar 27th
Reply

Diana Kio

this is a cute idea for a podcast

Mar 5th
Reply

Diana Kio

idk why

Mar 5th
Reply

Diana Kio

not good episode

Mar 5th
Reply

Diana Kio

best podcast ever

Mar 4th
Reply (1)

Erica Ervine

My mom and I love this podcast! ❤️ Keep making great episodes!

Mar 2nd
Reply

assaf bester

cusisfic

Feb 20th
Reply

Milica Novakovic

Feb 8th
Reply
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