Is there a word for "common mistruths casually told to kids by basically everything, that are trivially falsified by direct observation"?

Numbingly obviously wrong things like "The moon comes out at night and goes away during the day", which is just casually depicted as fact in everything for kids and babies, from picture books to written descriptions of day/night cycles.

I keep seeing stuff like this, the Moon-as-night-sun one is only the first one I can recall offhand.


@seachaint "the sky is blue" is one that seems true until you think about it for longer and realise that it isn't, as often as it is. There's a radiolab episode mentioning how a psychologist brought his kid up without ever mentioning the colour of the sky, and occasionally asked her what colour it is. And she would either refuse to answer or, say, "maybe white?" until school age when she was exposed to the common understanding of it being blue

· · Web · 3 · 1 · 4

@s0 @seachaint i just asked my 3 yo daughter and she looked out at the grey and she looked at it for a while, turns to me and says: blue

to be fair, she is a contrarian.
i'll try this again when the sky *is* blue.
(in two or three months)

@s0 @seachaint Similarly, "the sun is yellow". No -- if the sun was yellow, the moon would be yellow. If anything, the sun is slightly blue.

I dunno, it seems a bit of a stretch. Here's an article about said radiolab episode: The kid alternated between blue and white themselves without “being taught it was blue.” Which makes sense, because some days the sky is more white and other days the sky is more blue so if you ask a toddler they're going to say what it looks like right now.

I don't have an optical spectrometer on hand to confirm but the sky is pretty objectively blue today


@nytpu @seachaint yeah but I mean, it's more that the sky changes colour often. it can be orange, and pink, and dark blue, light blue, grey, white, etc etc.

Sign in to participate in the conversation
Cathode Church

A place for trans makers, coders, tinkerers and dreamers.