Where Does Complexity Come From? (Big Picture Ep. 3/5)

Mixing milk and coffee is a complex example in the eyes of a quantum physicist. A creative lesson compares a tendency toward entropy with complexity. Learners view a mixture of coffee and milk as first simple, then complex, and finally simple again.

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Instructional Ideas
  • Show a picture of each graph shown in the video and have pupils write a description
  • Prior to the video, show pupils a photo (or actual glass) of coffee and milk in various stages of mixture; ask them to describe each
Classroom Considerations
  • Requires a basic understanding of entropy
  • Uses real-life examples to add clarity
  • Include graphical representations to help explain a complex topic
  • None