Toys in Everyday Science

Exhibit by Tadashi Tokieda
Photo by Tony RinaldoPhoto by Tony Rinaldo

The exhibit is in the first floor gallery of Byerly Hall at 8 Garden Street, Radcliffe Yard, Cambridge, MA 02138.

From October 10 through November 1, the exhibit will be open weekdays from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

A Message from Tadashi Tokieda:

"Would you like to come and see some toys?

Toy here has a special sense: an object of everyday life which can be found or made in minutes, yet which, if played with imaginatively, reveals a behavior that sets physicists/mathematicians thinking for days.  The exhibit shares with you toys in this sense. 

Have you ever watched a small child being given a toy in the usual sense? The child pays no attention to the intended gift; she instead plays, happy, with the wrapping paper and box. 

Grown-ups tend to pay attention only to the parts of science already labeled as interesting. A fresh alternative may be possible. I am suggesting that, in science, we rediscover the eyes of a child—get interested in things that appeal to our personal experience, which we make interesting, rather than in things that we have been led to assume should interest us.

Established sciences are important. But alongside these sciences in flower, there are also sciences in the bud. The exhibit invites you to start looking for those buds, through simple yet surprising toys."

Illustration by Tadashi TokiedaIllustration by Tadashi Tokieda