I love them, because in terms of science, they may be aimed at kids, but are perfect for non-scientific adults like me...They used to be and maybe still are on bbc2. The last few years I've watched them in the evening on bbc4. Its not a great time for the target audience tho, I record them now and watch with the children during the day.
I thought exactly the same thing (I watched it with my youngest child) : much of last night's lecture was a simplified version of the recent Shock and Awe series about the history of electricity, plus a few readings of various kinds of renewable energy added to update the whole thing. The Bake-off star coming to ice the cake was seriously pathetic. Literally the icing on the cake - but in a bad way. I was almost embarrassed that I'd insisted that we watch it together, there was really nothing new to it at all.I watched them in the past and loved them. More recently I think they have been unnecessarily dumbed down. They try to make them interactive in allowing children to take part. However, some of this interactivity is done for its own sake and trivialises the lecture. For example, on last night's programme a girl was asked to go on to the roof of the building to carry out a task. The task involved reading a number off a meter that everyone else could see. The children who attend are deeply interested in the subject but many of the activities they were involved in were trivial.
The subject matter is fascinating. I think it requires a little more imagination from the organisers of the lecture. I believe the children who attended and who watch this type programme should be more intellectually challenged by the content.
Inshallah!As someone who has just this year started to present ideas and strategies, tips and tricks to an audience I have learned that the best information can be lost in a dull presentation and the thinnest insights can be made to sound like the most interesting thing on earth.
I like watching presentations by MBA professors (Costas Markides of Harvard and London Business School is terrific) and by others who are so in command of their subjects that they need no powerpoint slides or props but can carry an audience along on the sparkle of enthusiasm for what they do.
I realise quite in the middle to late stage of my career that a powerpoint and props merely inhibit the natural speaker and distract them from developing their natural style.
The best speakers have tried the standard lecture tools and have abandoned them for a natural style of their own.
This year I have learned that there is a great joy in knowing your subject and making it sound interesting for new people and young people who are seeking insights and experience.
I'm not a natural yet but I will be at the end of this coming year. And shortly after that will probably be under arrest for sedition or something