52

The dwarven boarding school system is designed for the betterment of dwarven society as a whole and to place dwarves where they are most likely to succeed, with no regard for family values, pedigree, personal choice, individuality, or social status. Incompetent dwarves will not rise due to nepotism, and skilled dwarves will not be smothered by social ...


43

DISCLAIMER: DON'T TRY THIS AT HOME, SCHOOL OR WHEREVER YOUR YOUNG AGE TAKES YOU You are looking for a dust explosions, which can be caused by grain, flour, starch, sugar, powdered milk, cocoa, coffee, and pollen. Powdered metals (such as aluminum, magnesium, and titanium) can form explosive suspensions in air, if finely divided. But about dust ...


29

Have a look at real-world instances of children who appear biologically frozen in time and parallel their behavior as an indicator of how your immortal child might act. Examples include: Nick Smith is 21 years old, and stands less than three feet tall Gabby Williams is 8 years old and appears to age very slowly, Geoffery 29 years old but also appears to ...


26

The most popular explosives are already crystallized like snowflakes. Example: Nitroglycerin - has melting point at 14C, but can easily overcool to negative numbers. It needs shaking to crystallize, but crystallization is not the most probable outcome of shaking nitroglycerin. But if it crystallizes it produces something snow-like, especially if it was ...


25

Guncotton is a form of nitrocellulose made from cotton wool. It looks white and fluffy. It's historically been used as a propellant rather than a high explosive, but was used for blasting and I think as a teacher-launching substance that's close enough. Jules Verne was a fan, using it in many stories; it was invented around the time he was writing. ...


21

Would this law be sufficient to improve the lives of children? Not sufficient, but helpful. First, there is a lot of mandatory education out there that seems to have mixed results. People have to pass a driving test, yet there are lots of reckless drivers. Sufficiently-reckless drivers may have to take another "no really, we mean it" class before ...


21

Efficiency. With conventional public schools, every locale needs to provide all of the infrastructure for a school system. That's fine for cities, but for sparsely-populated areas, either the cost per student goes up or the amount of focus goes down. An example of the latter is the one-room schoolhouse where one teacher instructs students at several grade ...


18

Alot of answers thus far have focused on the notion that children are significantly less capable than adults at governance. I'm not sure there's clear evidence of this principle given the definition of youths and adult has shifted dramatically over the course of human civilization (Many of the founding fathers were under 35 when they signed the declaration ...


16

Triacetone Triperoxide (aka TATP) was made famous several years ago by the "shoe bomber" -- who tried to light his shoes to blow up the plane he was flying in after filling them with this material before boarding. It's very easy to make (three easily obtained ingredients), and forms as a snow-like precipitate in the solution. It's a primary explosive -- ...


15

It takes a village to raise a child This dwarves' society is highly communal. The nuclear family, a foundation block of human society, plays a much lower role, or maybe even doesn't exist at all. This is why children can't stay with the parents for a long time, and the entire community has to bear the responsibility of taking care of their youth. Over time, ...


14

I think with that alone, no. Written language would still develop for many reasons. The first is fidelity. Even if you assure me that your parrots remember perfectly, I will doubt it. Likewise, laying my faith solely in an AI leaves me with little ability to verify records. Also, records naturally include pictures. Those work better with captions, not ...


13

One way to get round the law as written: Home birth. In 2012, out-of-hospital births comprised 3%–6% of births in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Washington - http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db144.htm The above question is based on the assumption that some specific subset of humans are incompetent to make decisions regarding ...


10

Short of the great potential for a bureaucratic nightmare, this seems like a good plan to me. The tough part of this plan would be getting it passed. When you start talking about interfering in families like this many people will fight it. But given that you get the law in place your plan appears pretty solid though obviously there are concerns (as with ...


10

There's a story on this by P. J. Plauger, Child of All Ages. It was mentioned on SF.SE. Here's my summary from my answer: In the story, Melissa has the body of a preteen girl but is over two thousand years old, fluent in dozens of languages, and is well educated in many fields. She stays alive using a formula that her father developed which preserves life,...


10

I cant find the article I read anymore so this will have to do: https://scholar.google.nl/scholar?hl=nl&as_sdt=0%2C5&q=olympic+training+toddlers&btnG=#d=gs_qabs&u=%23p%3D31F1lBUcOosJ What I read was an article which trained children extremely young to see the effects. They trained the children in ice skating using play and rewards (rather ...


10

The best candidate would be a snake. Mouthbreeders have big mouths, and generally catch prey whole. There are nothing that feeds by nibbling that holds young in the mouth. There are no insects or non vertebrates that I know of that have big mouths like this. I suspect evolution favored big, gulping mouths first and then selected for mouth breeding after. ...


10

Well, there's napthalene. AKA mothballs, napthalene is pretty widely available as an insect repellent. It's also explosive, especially when you shave the stuff into flakes. Napthalene bombs are used as pyrotechnics in movies to provide that nice big satisfying fireball. Only problem is, it's used in the movie biz because it's a lot safer and less damaging ...


9

Children the age of 3 can be trained to recognize dangerous vs acceptable vegetable foods. At age 3 they can be in kindergarten and learning. They can also learn to acquire berries, honey, and to recognize and harvest edible insects like ants. Presuming 90% of their training is survival skills and we don't mind the occasional injury or death of children in ...


9

No, it will not improve the lives of children. After I was able to convince myself that this was not some cynical work of satire, I could appreciate the irony of the title, "self-ownership act," as this work already presumes both parent and child are property of the state. I suppose when you see the state as an extension of yourself, the next goal is to ...


9

Knowledge is useless without the emotional maturity to apply it. Ask anyone married to an alcoholic or addict! A one-year-old may know all about how electricity works, but when the impulse strikes to stick a fork in a socket, that knowledge will mean nothing. Ask the parent of any teenage male! Up until the age of about 6, the child simply does not have ...


9

It could go either way, but I'd lean towards cooperation. I saw a documentary a few years back (which I unfortunately can't find at the moment) about a group of Israeli and Palestinian kids who were brought together for a while. As best I remember it, the kids entered with the prejudices they inherited from their parents, but upon meeting each other they ...


9

The answer to this is quite subtle and detailed and there is seldom agreement among even the medical fraternity about how much a child's mind is capable of as it develops. Zhro's answer is quite good in that it explains a lot about how the young child's mind learns, but it's controversial insofar as many gifted children learn and behave in a manner that we ...


9

First of all it's a matter of size. Newborn fishes and crocodiles are small enough to fit in their parents' mouth. Despite this, some terrestrial animals use their mouth to carry around their babies: never seen a cat or a lion moving around their cubs by gently biting behind their necks? Still, those cubs are too big to fit in the mouth.


7

A horrible, terrible clerical error. These children were all orphans, from abusive families, and from horrible slums. They were collected as part of a government relief aid program to be taken to a rehabilitative academy. Unfortunatley "live passengers" was mislabled "livestock" on the automated ship computer. They were dropped off on an uninhabited planet ...


7

Controversial answers have a tendency to bring heated comments. Your best solution is not to argue with me in comments, but to post a rebuttal answer. If I think the comments have grown out of control, I'll invite the Moderators to lock the post to stop further comments. Stack Exchange is not a discussion forum.1 The resources the children need are the ...


7

Unions Since typical Tolkienesque dwarves place a high emphasis on trades/crafts skills, it'd be likely for them to unionise. There'd be little reason for the dwarf education profession to not follow suit. With enough centralisation of the school system, boarding schools would likely become the predominant or even the only form of school; public schools ...


7

Like you said, Equality. Even if the schools were the same, some Dwarves are rich, and some Dwarves are poor. Some have great advantages due to their home life, others none at all. By enforcing boarding school, it levels the playing field because all Dwarves have, in theory, the same schooling and 'home' life. Another possible reason is Social Cohesion ...


7

Children of that age range are tremendous imitators, and while their motor skills and strength might not be up to par with that of older children, they should be able to complete relatively simple tasks of a repetitive nature, though, as @RonJohn mentioned in the comments, there would almost certainly have to be some level of supervision from older children ...


6

Does the species have any gender preferences for raising the children? In the case of humans it is the female, but your species likely will have its own customs for gender preferences. It is possible that one gender does not have equal rights even in the eyes of the law thus get the least preference in the event of a divorce. Divorce Mechanics This is a ...


6

I imagine such a civilization could become quite advanced, but not easily - and not without some truly nasty tradeoffs. So, there are ten year olds who are quite advanced, can think and plan at an adult level - but there are also ten year olds who are decidedly not. Given time, training, pressing need, and, eventually, a culture which expects them to fend ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible