Tai Asks Why

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How do we fix recycling?

Tai tries to do his part by recycling whenever he can. But it turns out just tossing stuff into the blue bin doesn't do a whole lot: less than 10 percent of our plastic waste actually gets recycled.

Why do we laugh?

Laughing makes us feel real good, whether you’re in on the joke or not. But does it serve a specific purpose?

Are we alone in the universe?

So far, the only intelligent life we know of is right here on Earth — us! But could there be life on other planets just waiting to be discovered?

How do animals know where they're going?

We know birds can travel large distances day or night, rain or shine, even if they’ve never migrated before. If you confuse a spiny lobster and drop it far from home, it can still find its way back. How do they do that?

Why is math so hard to love?

To listeners of this podcast, it’s no secret that Tai loves math. But he knows that a lot of people, including his friends, definitely don’t feel the same way.

Why do we love junk food so much?

Pizza, chips, gummy worms and wings — these are a few of Tai’s favourite things! He just can’t get enough of their sugary, fatty, salty goodness, even though he knows they’re not exactly good *for* you. But why does he find those foods so irresistible in the first place?

How reliable are our memories?

Whether they're happy, sad or the embarrassing kind we'd rather forget, memories play a big part in our lives. They shape our identities, help us connect with others and allow us to learn from our past. But can we trust that our memories are accurate?

What can I do when I'm anxious?

Tai’s recently been experiencing a new, unsettling feeling that he just can’t always shake. His parents suggest it’s anxiety, and according to his friends, he’s not alone. But why does it have to feel so awful?

What will money look like in the future?

From cows to cryptocurrency, Tai traces the evolution of money to see if its history can offer clues to where it’s headed next.

What our youngest podcast host thinks about climate change

The finale of season one of Tai Asks Why was titled “How will we fix climate change?” Back then, Tai Poole was only 11 and already concerned about the environment. Four years later, with many more podcast episodes and interviews with scientists under his belt, how does 15-year-old Poole feel about the future?

Can we keep eating meat without destroying the planet?

To Tai, nothing beats cutting into a perfectly cooked steak or wolfing down a big, juicy cheeseburger. But lately he’s been paying more attention to the buzz around going meatless in the fight against climate change.
CBC Kids News

NASA is about to launch the most powerful telescope ever built

The James Webb Space Telescope, the biggest, most advanced telescope ever, will be launched into space soon, where it will help us learn about our universe.

Special episode: How powerful is NASA's new space telescope?

So, there's a MAJOR event happening in space science. NASA is set to launch the enormous James Webb Space Telescope. Why is this such a big deal? Tai's here to tell you why.

Full-text transcripts | Tai Asks Why, Season 3

Access the full-text transcripts for all episodes of the latest season of Tai Asks Why.

Is it possible to predict the future?

These are anxious times, and Tai just wants to know… what’s going to happen? He can’t look into a crystal ball, but there are actually people who spend their lives predicting the future. With their help, he looks towards the great unknown.

How is the universe going to end?

Not to be a downer, but the universe could end any minute. Or it could take a hundred million years… give or take. So we don’t know *when* it will happen, but we can be a bit more certain about *how* the universe will end. In this episode, Tai unpacks the science of the end times.

Where is the internet?

For Tai, the internet has always been there, and it’s hard to imagine life without it. It seems almost like it’s everywhere, all at once, like magical little clouds filled with information above us. But there’s a very real, physical system that allows him to send cat memes to friends or submit his homework, as he learns in this week's episode!

How else can we power the planet?

Nothing on our planet could function without pooower! Even though energy is all around us, harnessing that energy and turning it into power is a massive challenge. Powering our day-to-day lives makes up almost half of fossil fuel emissions, which is causing climate change! Tai tries to find out if there’s a better way to power the planet.

How much screen time is too much?

Tai and all of his friends are in a constant war with their parents over one big thing — screen time. For years, their parents have been telling them that screen time is bad and needs to be limited. But is it really? Tai finds outs.

What is at the bottom of the ocean?

The ocean covers over 70% of our planet, and yet, we’ve only mapped about a tenth of it. In this episode, Tai explores the deep ocean to learn about its mysteries and what survives in its darkest corners.

How do I know what's true on the internet?

It’s easier than ever to be bamboozled by bad information. Tai tries to figure out how to spot misinformation and disinformation and how to stop them from spreading.

Why do humans dance?

Don’t tell anyone: Tai thinks he has two left feet but he still loves to dance when no one’s watching. But why do humans like to dance at all? What’s going on in the brain when people boogie?

Why are viruses so good at what they do?

You might hate viruses by now, but did you know humans actually need them to survive? In this week's episode, Tai speaks with Dr. Seema Yasmin to learn what makes viruses so powerful.

What's happening in my teen brain?

Tai’s 14 now. As he goes through adolescence, there are all sorts of weird things happening in his brain that are literally reshaping it, getting him ready for adulthood! But what’s happening in there? Why do humans even have an adolescent phase? And how can Tai harness his mental superpowers while he has them?

This is why songs get stuck in your head - even when you don't like them

Whether it’s the beat of an opening riff or a random mix of words from the chorus, 99 per cent of people admit to getting songs stuck in their heads. So what is it about certain songs that make them so catchy?

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