In the valentine-decorated first-grade room of Washington Elementary School in Berkeley, Calif., Teacher Jeanne Gibson last week tested her tots on some questions that would stump most pupils long after they learned to read.
"What is force?" she asked.
"Force is acting upon other things in any direction," answered a small boy.
"What happens," asked Teacher, "if two forces are equal?" "It stays still," shouted two eager boys.
"What if one force is stronger?" "It goes the way that there's most force," answered a little girl.
These space-age children are taking an experimental science curriculum drawn up by University of California Physicist Robert Karplus, 32, whose...