In the past year, my students and I have participated in an eTwinning project called Space Adventures. Our partners were from France, Italy and Poland.
The main aim of the project is to acquire knowledge of the planets of the solar system, of exoplanets and of the ways to detect them.
Meanwhile, we also hope that students will expand their scientific English vocabulary. Not only due to the specific multilingual glossary of astronomy but also due to the collaborative activities and teamwork through which students had to gather material on famous astronomers, on planets and their environments and on modern exoplanet detection systems.
Coding was also part of the project together with the programming of software like Stellarium and of robots or drones to explore the schools. Students should improve their skills in this area too.
A multilingual glossary of astronomy
Videos of school exploration
Biographies of Galileo, Copernicus, Le Verrier and Noordung
Jigsaw puzzles on planets
A scale model of the Solar System
An E-book for a report on the conference with scientists working on exoplanets
We planned the following activities:
Activity 1 : What do we know about the other countries?
Activity 2 : Create and vote for the best logo.
Activity 3 : A collaborative multilingual glossary of astronomy.
Activity 4 : Astronomers’ biographies.
Activity 5 : School exploration by “robots”.
Activity 6 : A video conference or a visit from an astronomer/astrophysicist as a role model. A discussion with scientists (from France and form Slovenian about exoplanets.
Activity 7 : Games for students about astronomy
Events with scientists:
Mr. Sean Raymond is an astronomer working at the Laboratory of Astrophysics in Bordeaux. In video conference meeting he explane us how they can find exoplanets.
Dr. Marija Strojnik (Scholl) is a senior professor at the Optical Research Center in Leon, Mexico. She visited Slovenian school beginning March when she visited Slovenia. Students asked her questions about exoplanets and about her work in Mexico. The questions were prepared with the cooperation of all partners.
Evita and I were very happy to participate in a Scientix webinar about the STEM Discovery Week campaign with hundreds of educators in STEM education on 28 February 2018.
We enjoyed answering the large number of questions we received from the participants.. The main questions were about what kind of activities they could organise for the STEM Discovery Week, how they could disseminate the campaign and how to participate in its associated competitions.
A few teachers also asked us for examples of activities of previous campaigns. Well, this is the third time the STEM Discovery Week is organised so, if you want to get some inspiration, you can of course have a look at the winners of our competitions in 2016 and 2017.
One teacher also asked us how she could organise the best week. There is no golden rule or a formula for success, it all depends if your activity meets your intentions and the learners’ expectations. If you need some ideas for getting started, though, you can have a look at a recent blog by Evita Tasiopoulou here.
We are over one month away from the STEM Discovery Week of 2018, and we have already exceeded the number of events we had last year. That’s very exciting news for the campaign! Our aim is to reach 500 activities by 23 April and we look forward to reaching this target with you!
Watch the recording of the Scientix webinar about the STEM Discovery Week to learn more about the campaign and how you can participate.
This is the third time the STEM Discovery Week is organised. This year, one of the main aims is at bringing projects, organisations and schools together to raise awareness about studies and careers in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). And it is fun to see how more and more partners are joining the campaign every week!
Thanks the initiative and support from the Scientix project, which is funded by the Horizon 2020 framework of the European Union for research and innovation, and SYSTEMIC, which is funded by the Erasmus+ programme, it is now possible to have a platform where various partners can share their activities in STEM education. Thus, the various projects, organisations and schools that are running initiatives in STEM education, can better learn from each another and pool their resources.
A campaign like the STEM Discovery Week is very important for increasing and strengthening collaboration in the field of STEM education. The hope is that this year, the STEM Discovery Week can facilitate 500 activities in STEM education, reaching 10,000 schools. For this to happen, a support from partners is essential. Already we can see how more and more such activities are being added to the map. So, in this one place, the STEM Discovery Week partners and anyone else who is following the campaign can find and/or add information about STEM activities all across the world!
Right now, the STEM Discovery Week is proud to present a diverse mix of partners that come from many different countries in Europe and beyond. All the partners agree to jointly disseminate the campaign through their networks, hence creating a multiplier effect that goes way beyond their area.
The lesson from this campaign so far is that projects, organisations and schools can achieve much more in partnership. Hopefully, the STEM Discovery Week can become a sustainable model for raising awareness about STEM topics as an integral part of our annual calendars. Download the call for projects and organisations to find out how you can become a partner here.