Dear Lifelong Learner,
Are you happy with the science education you got in school? Did you learn the crucial, fundamental principles of science—the principles that are
Here’s a quick quiz: Can you explain what the equations you memorized in school, like F=MA, really mean and why they matter? Do you understand the monumental discovery Newton made when an apple fell on his head? Do you know what physical laws make it possible for you to receive beautiful images on your TV out of thin air—or a thin coil of wire? Do you know how scientists proved the earth was round—and that they did it almost 2000 years before Columbus? Do you know the essential thinking methods scientists used to answer scientific questions—methods that are useful for every adult in every field? Do you know how to prove the equations and theories your science teachers told you about?
If your science education was anything like mine, the answer to most of these question is: “No.”
I’ll be blunt: The science education most of us received—whether in grade school, high school, or college—was a travesty. Mine certainly was. Most of us emerge from years of such “education” with little more than vague memories of equations we once memorized to pass a test.
And worst of all, most of us blame ourselves for not understanding science. “Maybe I’m not smart enough.” “Maybe I need to be a math wiz.” “Maybe I just needed to work harder in school.”
How can I be so sure? Because when I began teaching, I didn’t understand science, either—until I learned it through the teaching methods of David Harriman. A brilliant philosopher and historian of physics, Mr. Harriman devised a revolutionary science course that taught both my Junior High students and me the fundamentals of science that would remain with us for a lifetime. If 13-year-olds can understand the fundamentals of science better than most adults, then so can you.
The Traditional Method of Teaching Science: “Out of Order”
99% of educators ignore a crucial fact about teaching: students can attain true understanding of a subject only if they are taught the subject matter in the right order.
It is an undeniable fact that in every subject, some knowledge is relatively simple, while other knowledge is much more complex. The more complex the knowledge, the more prior knowledge you need in order to understand it. For example, to understand a complex subject like calculus, you need to first understand trigonometry, geometry, algebra, and arithmetic. To understand arithmetic, by contrast, you need to know much less.
This applies to all subjects, not just math. In teaching, one must always teach less complex knowledge before the more complex knowledge that depends on it. This is the basic principle of teaching we employ at my school, VanDamme Academy. By following this principle, our school has become renowned in Southern California for producing students who are shockingly knowledgeable about the core subjects: history, English, math, and, yes, science. The parents of our students, from working blue collar workers to Ivy League graduates, tell me delightedly on a daily basis how their children are giving them some of the education they never really got.
Unfortunately, 99% of science curricula teach science completely out of order. They teach the most complex, abstract discoveries in the field—like Newton’s Laws or the nature of atoms—without first presenting the evidence and simpler discoveries they need to really understand them. In effect, they teach calculus before arithmetic!
If you ever studied physics in school, think about how you “learned” Newton’s Laws of motion. When I was in high school, the teacher came in one day and wrote on the board:
Newton’s 3 Laws of Motion:
#1: Every body continues in its state of rest or of uniform motion….
At some point, he gave us equations like this (Newton’s law of universal gravitation)—
and had us plug them into some random problem sets, and then gave us a test. I never understood what these laws really meant, or how anyone came up with them, or why I should believe them. All I really knew about these equations was that they would be on the test.
The same thing happened when I “learned” about atoms. In first grade, I was shown a model and some pretty pictures of atoms, told that they had things called a nucleus, protons, neutrons, and electrons, and told that everything in the world was made up of them. How did scientists know about these complex things that I couldn’t see? I had no idea—just the teacher’s say-so. I was not learning—I was parroting. And I was parroting when I “learned” the periodic table, the nature of light, electricity, magnetism, and the other fundamentals of science. They were presented as random bolts from the blue—to be accepted blindly.
Is it any wonder that with this kind of “teaching,” most of us spend our years in science class bored and confused, and emerge with virtually no valuable knowledge?
David Harriman’s revolutionary approach to science teaching: a historical, inductive method
But there is another way to learn science—David Harriman’s way.
Mr. Harriman’s course is unlike any other because for every principle of science he teaches, he gives you the evidence that scientists themselves used to discover it. He teaches the essential principles of science, step-by-step, in the historical order in which they were discovered. For each new principle, he presents the observations and prior knowledge from which the principle was induced. Induction is the heart of the process of scientific discovery: it is the method of observing reality and, when one has sufficient evidence, generalizing into a scientific theory.
In Fundamentals of Physical Science, Mr. Harriman starts from the earliest discoveries in Ancient Greece and leads you step-by-step through the discoveries of dozens of scientists, showing you how they induced the laws of mechanics, the nature of electricity and magnetism, and the atomic theory of matter. The result is an easily understandable, utterly fascinating account of the fundamentals of physical science.
From the first lecture to the last, you will experience something new: you will really understand science—because you will see for yourself the evidence and logic that the scientists themselves used to understand the physical world.
For example, when you learn Newton’s Laws, you will first learn all the prior discoveries that needed to be made before Newton could discover them—the discoveries needed to truly understand them. You will learn the crucial discoveries of Greek scientists, like Aristarchus’s calculation of the distance to the moon and Eratosthenes’s measurement of the size of the earth. You will learn Galileo’s account of the nature of acceleration, Galileo’s principle of inertia, Kepler’s laws of planetary motion, and Newton’s own law of circular acceleration. Once you understand these principles, then—and only then—will Mr. Harriman show you how Newton used these prior discoveries along with other evidence to induce his amazing law of universal gravitation.
When you learn how Newton actually discovered his laws, you will really understand them. You will not have to take them on faith, or blindly recite them. You will know that they were true, why they are true, and how fascinating a discovery they are. And you won’t forget them.
And when you learn science this way, you grow to love science.
But don’t just take my word for it. Read what previous students of the course—from 16-year-olds to longtime students of physics—have to say about it.
I am currently a Ph.D. candidate in physics, and I was amazed at how much I learned from David Harriman's course. This course stands head and shoulders above any other course or textbook I have encountered.
The standard physics textbooks and curricula used in high schools and universities today bombard students with facts, principles, and laws of nature, completely devoid of the foundational knowledge required to understand them.
Harriman provides that necessary foundation, carefully and clearly, yet with an effortless presentation style.
With this course, Harriman demystifies physics. He shows you how to proceed from idly gazing at the night sky to the formulation of a law of universal gravitation or the measurement of the speed of light….I would urge anyone, at any level of background in physics, who is interested in understanding -- *really* understanding -- physics to learn it from David Harriman.
Who is the ideal audience for Mr. Harriman's course? Nearly everyone! It's perfect for someone relatively new to physics like myself; it's perfect for even advanced people who want a deeper historical perspective than is usually taught. The course is a perfect bridge between the "conceptual" (non-math based) books and the more math heavy texts, so all levels are covered.
I found Mr. Harriman's physics course to be an exciting walk through the fascinating world of physics. I would recommend these lectures to anyone who has an interest in the subject, or anyone who just wants to be a more informed layman. Besides the refreshing workout for the brain that the subject provides, it creates a new level of perception for the world around you: the stars, the planets, a falling object, the bathtub -- Archimedes principle of floating objects! -- all take on a new life under the light of a new understanding.
WANT MORE REASONS WHY YOU NEED FUNDAMENTALS OF PHYSICAL SCIENCE?
Get what other courses leave out: scientific thinking methods.
There are two basic reasons to study science. One is to understand the principles by which the physical world operates. The other is to learn proper thinking methods from the people who used observation and logic to discover these principles. Our thinking methods affect our learning and success in every field. What better example to learn from than some of the greatest minds in history?
Fundamentals of Physical Science gives you the thought processes of dozens of great thinkers—from famous giants like Galileo and Newton, to important thinkers you may have never heard of, like Gilbert, Hauksbee, Gray, DuFay, and Von Kleist.
"Physics, the study of the material world as a whole, is the most universal of the sciences. So it is the best introduction possible to the laws of reality and to the method of rational thought."
"Dave Harriman seems to know effortlessly everything worth knowing about physics and its history; yet he also knows that the student must be led through the material carefully, in crystal clear steps, if he is to understand the logic and power of the subject. As a result, physics taught by Harriman comes alive in the student's mind as a real part of his thinking.
— Dr. Leonard Peikoff
Philosopher of Education
Experience the true pleasure of learning science
Often teachers try to make science “fun” by breaking up the boredom with a constant stream of jokes and explosive experiments. By contrast, Mr. Harriman’s entire course is fun, because it is a fascinating intellectual adventure. It’s the ultimate mystery story, with scientific detectives following the clues to discover the laws by which everything in the physical world operates.
Be inspired by a whole new group of heroes
I love heroes—in fiction, on TV, but especially in real life. Fundamentals of Physical Science is the story of real heroes—individuals who ventured into the unknown, often facing ridicule and persecution from a hostile world, in a relentless quest for the truth. Without the discoveries of these heroes, you would have no car, no house, no cell phone—nor any of the countless other discoveries modern science has made possible.
DO YOU HAVE THE TIME AND MONEY TO GET A REAL SCIENCE EDUCATION?
YES! TAKE OUR COURSE ANYWHERE, ANYTIME, FOR UNDER $7.50 AN HOUR!
Most people I talk to wish they were better-educated, but it just seems like it must take a huge amount of time, money, and hassle to even get started—for example, by spending thousands of dollars at inconvenient hours to attend a local college. But with Fundamentals of Physical Science, you get a far better science education for far less time and money–and you can watch or listen to this amazing course anytime you want.
Make no mistake, it does take time to get a solid grounding in science—more time than it takes to read a textbook or listening to a couple of summary lectures. But it doesn’t take anywhere near the time you wasted in school, or the time you would spend going back to school. Our course is divided into two, 60-hour parts (“The Scientific Revolution” and “Electricity, Magnetism, and the Nature of Matter”), available on CD or DVDs—hours that will pass by in no time, whether you choose to listen to the course on your daily commute, or watch it on the weekends with your family.
How much does this course cost? The students at our school happily paid over $3000 for this exact course—and Americans routinely pay many more thousands for traditional, ineffective science courses.
But you can get the entire, 120-hour course for only $895 on CD or $1195 on DVD—or one 60-hour part for only $495 on CD or $695 on DVD. That’s as low as $7.50 an hour! Owning “Fundamentals of Physical Science” is like having the world’s best science teacher available to you anytime, anywhere—and paying him minimum wage!
To make it even easier to experience science like you’ve never experienced it before, we also offer an installment plan—get Part I or Part II for 6 easy monthly payments of only $88 on CD or $120 on DVD, or the entire course for 6 easy payments of $155 on CD or $205 on DVD!
And remember, this is for a course you cannot get anywhere else. There is no book or college course that teaches you physics using David Harriman’s historical, inductive method. Even if you went to Harvard and paid $5000 for a one-semester course, you would not get a science foundation anywhere near this good.
There is no risk: If you don’t like it, we’ll take it back, no questions asked.
At VanDamme Academy, we do not want anyone’s money unless they are happy with our product. If you aren’t satisfied with Fundamentals of Physical Science for any reason or no reason, just send it back within 30 days in good condition, and we’ll refund your entire purchase amount—including shipping.
Want more? For a limited time, if you purchase the entire course, we’ll send you two bonus essays to enhance your science learning experience. The first, “Enlightenment Science and Its Fall” by David Harriman tells the fascinating story of how the rise of the modern scientific method—which is responsible for all the amazing scientific and technological man has today, almost none of which existed 400 years ago. The second, “The Hierarchy of Knowledge: The Most Neglected Principle in Education” will teach you about the method behind Mr. Harriman’s course, and the rest of VanDamme Academy’s radical curriculum.
We can only offer these essays to the first 75 customers who take advantage of this offer, so Order Now.
**Warning: If you are concerned with style over substance, do not buy this course**
Because “Fundamentals of Physical Science” was taped in a real-live classroom—not a professional studio—the quality of the video and audio is not professional grade. Don’t worry—you can easily understand everything Mr. Harriman says and see everything he writes on the blackboard. (Note: one of the 31 lectures in Part 1 has substandard sound quality, so we include a free transcript of the material to enable you to follow along easily.) To us, and to most of our customers, that’s what’s most important. But if you require that everything you watch have Hollywood production values, this course is not for you. And that’s too bad, because it is the only source in the world for this priceless, one-of-a-kind material.
Remember: Ignorance is not bliss—understanding is
You now have the opportunity to get the science education you have been deprived of your whole life—the foundation of scientific knowledge and thinking methods that will give you an edge for the rest of your life.
So what are you waiting for? There is no time like the present to experience the power of a real education.
As one of our customers wrote: “Isaac Newton—a man of whom, before David Harriman’s lectures, I had hardly heard, but whom I now revere—said of the great scientists before him: 'If I have seen further than other men, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.' David Harriman was my giant. He could be yours.”
Founder and Director, VanDamme Academy
Before I heard the first lecture of Mr. Harriman's course, I struggled to conceive of a science course consisting of more than memorization and recitation, imparting more than empty formulas and fleeting facts. Yet I hoped—for all the excitement that science still stirred in me—that his lecture would be different.
From the first introduction, to the last lecture I received, to the hours I now spend reviewing my old notes, David Harriman's course has been the cornerstone of my understanding of the physical world. His lectures, by presenting the history of science in its complete, chronological development, impart not only the great discoveries of physics, but also--and perhaps more importantly--the experiments, logic, and method which made them possible. Rather than merely reciting Newton's law of gravity, I was shown the observations and calculations which had formed it; rather than being blankly told that matter was composed of atoms, I was given the laws and previous discoveries which had led to this conclusion; rather than memorizing the formulas of motion, I was taught how to derive them. David Harriman remained unwaveringly attentive to the inexorable hierarchical process of scientific advancement. And, because of this, I grasped each discovery as though it was my own.
VanDamme Academy Class of 2005
These wonderful lectures…teach the critical ideas in man's knowledge of the physical world by starting at the beginning of science and showing each step by which more was learned, what evidence and reasoning validated the new knowledge and how each step built on and extended prior knowledge into wider integrations. I was a physics major when I entered college, yet I can easily say that my actual understanding of physics is much greater as a result of this course than I can credit to any other class I've taken – in large measure because I now have a clear grasp of what the physical theories actually refer to and, thus, why they are correct.
Editor of Educational Site StrongBrains.com and Product Unit Manager at Microsoft
“I found the VanDamme Academy Physics I course taught by Mr. David Harriman to be extremely educational and I highly recommend it to anyone who thinks they are lacking in their understanding of the physical world. My reasons for buying the course were that I knew I had gaps in my knowledge of science and these gaps were impairing my ability to acquire new knowledge in my field (electrical engineering). Despite the numerous science and math courses I attended in high school and college, I could tell I was on a very shaky foundation. Most of my so-called knowledge at school was memorization – I could parrot back on tests and homework the answers to questions, but I didn’t truly understand the ideas, nor could I retain much of the subject once I stopped using it continuously. Rather than constantly trying to re-memorize scientific and mathematical principles every time I come across them, I decided to find a way to actually understand completely the fundamentals of science and math. The Physics I course certainly filled in what is most necessary to actually have knowledge of science. Mr. Harriman teaches the course in a logical flow so things can be grasped in stages, and there are no superfluous or unnecessary topics that take away from the crucial ideas at hand. Not only does this make the material easily graspable, but the method makes the material extremely interesting. After watching these course DVDs (which I recommend over the pure audio, for a greater immersion into the actual course), I find myself much clearer in my thinking and much more capable of picking up new knowledge, by making sure I understand clearly what aspects of the physical world each idea applies to, and how that affects all my other knowledge. I think this type of course is needed for everyone, as in my experience, it’s so far above the courses I’ve had throughout my life as far as the actual transmittal of knowledge is concerned…In short, this course has made science and math much more intelligible for me, and was completely worth the time and cost – I highly recommend it.”