STEM Discovery Week 2018 in Island of Elba, Italy

I am planning a brief presentation from my students (age 17) about women in STEM. Due to the schedule in my school, I have only one hour on Tuesday 24th April, from 8.00 to 9.00 CEST, but I am looking for other schools to join us in a web meeting. I hope this is interesting for students that could find some inspiration from the great women in STEM.

Science Festival is our tradition

The science festival has been organized in our school for many years.

We have 3 years documentation: 2015,16,17 and plans for 2018. It is the best way to show students the scientific world in an interesting convention.

Short story:

  1. Science Festival 2015

http://www.prus.edu.pl/content/festiwal-nauki-0

We have proved that learning does not have to be boring!

On 11 February 2015, the Science Festival took place in our school. The students participated in lectures, workshops, demonstrations prepared by scientists and animators from the Copernicus Science Center. Despite the fact that the classes lasted from 8.55 – to 15.30 it was impossible to get acquainted with everything that was prepared for this day. Already during the festival, questions were asked by the students: When is the next festival? The offer prepared for students on this day was very interesting:

Copernicus Science Center: animators Magdalena A. and Robert N. prepared interesting pressure shows;

Centre for Informatics Education and Computers Application: showed students how to make computer-aided measurements, junior high school students listened to a lecture entitled “Mountain climbing, traveling or the world through the eyes of a globetrotter” led by MSc Małgorzata W. The lecture was combined with a demonstration of climbing equipment and extensive documentation;

University of Warsaw:  Professor Andrzej W. led the workshop “Graphene – the main role”;

We hosted Dr. Grzegorz T. from the Forestry Research Institute, who gave a lecture on “The Earth of the Planet of Insects”. Students who were interested in geography listened to a lecture on the Lake Baikal conducted by Ph.D. Krzysztof K. Ph.D. Maryla M. convinced us that “The noise is around us”;

There were also student shows, the students participating in them had the opportunity to learn not only the exact sciences (presentation “Programming and robotics” prepared students 1g gim, Jakub S., Przemysław P.), humanities (presentations prepared girls from IIIb), but also natural sciences (presentation “Long-term experiences, The influence of selected factors on plant growth”, 1e gim, Jan B., Grzegorz P. “Extended reality, or experiments with Professor Why” prepared students from class 1c, Maciej W., Bartek M.);

There were also language games for those who wanted to test their language skills, which was prepared by  MSc Gabriela A. At the end of the festival there was also a mathematical competition.

The whole festival was coordinated by MSc Renata Sidoruk- Sołoducha and MSc Marta Pietrzak.

Movie from the 2015 Science Festival https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8LRDWSDPo8E

  1. Science Festival 2016

http://www.prus.edu.pl/content/festiwal-nauki-1

V Science Festival took place in our school on 03.03 2016 between 8.00-15.30. Students participated in demonstrations, meetings, lectures and other forms of popularizing science prepared by invited guests as well as older and younger colleagues. What kind of attractions took place that day?

The Copernicus Science Center  prepared a show about music;

Centre for Informatics Education and Computers Application showed Computer-aided measurements;

Professor Andrzej W. from the University of Warsaw talked about “Optical phenomena in nature”;

MSc. Edyta W. from Edu Esri Polska explaind about the topic of “GIS(Geographic Information System) in education”;

Ph.D. Jakub C. lectured on Antarctica;

Ph.D. Grzegorz T. from the Forest Research Institute told about “Biodiversity of insects”;

Ph.D. Maryla M., Institute of Noise talked about “Noise around us”;

Lego and programming, company Akces Edukacja, Iga M.;

UW Professor from University of Warsaw Szymon M. had a lecture on “Clouds and light”;

Biocenen Company, Natural experiments from kitchen;

“GPS or modern ways of orientation in the field” was held by MSc Przemysław Ł., the chief specialist in satellite navigation, M. Pietro K., specialist in the operation of GPS, GARMIN;

Prof. Marian K. from Warsaw University of Technology “Warsaw Water”;

Ph.D. Aneta N., Medical Academy Warsaw, “Old and new diseases, vaccines”;

Paweł B., Ph.D. Izabela W., Institute of Ecology and Bioethics WFCh UKSW, “Plant-herbivore relations”;

“NOT e-montional”, Konrad W., Zuzanna J., students from the High School. Miguel de Cervantes and the High School  N. Zmichowska;

Psychological and acting workshops.

Student demonstrations covered the following fields of study:

  • Psychological experiment
  • Natural experiments of KMO (Young Explorers’ Club)
  • Chemical experiments
  • The history of aviation, presentation of a hovercraft
  • Scratch or kitten in programming
  • Geographical projects: Great Britain, Madagascar
  • Humanistic presentations: World War II, with the eyes of a civilian, the Warsaw Ghetto
  • Physical experiments, Alternative energy sources
  • Mathematics in game programming
  • Addicts I say non-behavioral and chemical addictions.
  • Toxic substances
  • Physical designs

The Science Festival  was greatly enjoyed by young people. Student demonstrations, lectures and workshops were very popular among students who regretted that the festival lasts only one day a year.

  1. Science Festival 2017

http://prus.edu.pl/content/festiwal-nauki-2017

23, 27 and 28 March 2017 – three days of meetings, three days of challenges, three days that warmed up the minds.

Within the walls of our school we had the honor and pleasure to host about thirty specialists from various fields of knowledge – natural sciences, humanities and social sciences.

We were visited by lecturers and doctoral students from University of Warsaw, Warsaw Medical University, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, specialists from the Center for Information Education and Computer Applications and GARMIN, experts from the KGP Prevention Department, prominent journalists, well-known travellers.

On March 23 and 28, students had the opportunity to listen to five lectures, participate in dozens of workshops and classes conducted using the seminar method.

On 27 March a field game (geocaching) took place in Saska Kępa, which was once again prepared by the European Club functioning at XXXV High School B. Prus. Students also presented their achievements – seventeen works and projects in the field of environmental protection, the latest achievements of technology and human sciences. School self-government accumulating (with success!) Funds for the kitchenette available to students ran a cafe, invited for delicious baked goods prepared by colleagues from all first and second grades.

Our plans – Science Festival 8.03.2018    

  •  Many guests are invited from Warsaw University, Warsaw Medical University,
    • Museum of John Paul II and Primate Wyszynski,
    • There will be a lot of journalist workshops,
    • Lecture “Reality hidden in a metaphor”. A few words about metaphors that we use willingly, and we do not even know about it,
    • Lecture: “Colors of plants”,
    • Workshops “Graphene and magic of 2D crystals”,
    • Exhibition of paintings by a schoolgirl,
    • Lecture on contemporary human evolution,
    • Summary of the translation competition.
  • Students from the Youth Explorers’ Club (http://kmo.org.pl/?strona=uzytkownik_galerie&uzytkownik_id=199) are preparing numerous demonstrations of projects and experiments.
  • We are planning a Science Escape Room – biological laboratory:

With technology in the world of science or “Science Escape Room with ICT in the lead role”. Who of us does not like secrets, riddles, secrets. And as Karel Čapek wrote: “Get to know – it’s a mystery.”

There was an accident in one of the laboratories of the future. An unspecified system broke into pieces and with it scientists were trapped in the room. Using the acquired knowledge, participants of the game cooperate with each other to find hidden puzzles, solve them, recreate the damaged layout, find the lost key and get out of the laboratory. The ally of this game will of course be ICT tools.   

Goals of the fun:

  • Students use knowledge of human anatomy and physiology in practice,
  • Students work together to answer questions and reconstruct the digestive system.

In a word of explanation:

Students receive instructions at the beginning. They work as a group for success. The teacher explains that in various places in the hall there are hidden tasks (organs) to be found. In addition to solving puzzles, students also find the room key.

Required materials:

  1. Envelopes with riddles – qr cody in which 14 elements of the digestive system were hidden (mouth, teeth, tongue, salivary glands, throat, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, duodenum, large intestine, pancreas, liver, gallbladder, appendix),
  2. A chest with a key and curiosities about the digestive system, or the “hero” of the search,
  3. Cipher padlock for the chest,
  4. Manual – evacuation procedure,
  5. Work card – outline of the human body,
  6. Tablet with a free application: qr code reader (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=tw.mobileapp.qrcode.banner&hl=en) and Anatomy 4d (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.daqri.d4DAnatomy&hl=en) with a printed outline of the body (http://anatomy4d.daqri.com/documents/anatomy-posters-all.pdf)
  1. Pencil, crayons to draw individual organs of the digestive system,
  2. A card with the words on the hall door made in the program (https://wordart.com/).

SCIENCE ESCAPE ROOM LABORATORY – EVALUATION PROCEDURE:

  1. You enter the laboratory with the whole class.
  2. The teacher in the room is just a passive observer.
  3. We search the laboratory to find a key that will allow you to leave the room.
  4. However, getting out of the room is not a win.
  5. The victory consists in solving puzzles, finding organs and reconstructing a damaged system from the human body.
  6. Everything you can find can be useful.
  7. You have 40 minutes for the whole job and leaving the laboratory.
  8. You are solely on your own.
  9. We keep our fingers crossed for you 🙂

Summary: Learning through play using modern technologies and free software can be an interesting variation on school boredom for use on every subject.

  1. A cafe for the Women’s Day.

 

STEM discovery week 2018: “STEM experiments for little scientists”

The pilot program “STEM Experiments for little Scientists” aims to promote and support co-operation between Primary Education Teachers and Laboratory Centers of Physical Sciences (EKFE) in Secondary Education for the dissemination of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) subjects in the 5th and 6th grade Primary School students.

The program will include visits of primary school pupils and teachers to General High Schools of Secondary Education Workshops in our city. They can attend STEM experiments on various subjects of physical sciences, which will be carried out by the professor in charge and the collaborators of the EKFE.

This training program will introduce experimental teaching to primary school pupils and will develop laboratory skills and competences. They will learn by experience in a pleasant and creative way. Educational programs that are conducted in the lab with children being actively involved is a source of information, but also a source of entertainment and growth.

The experiments in the visits will be mainly drawn from Physics, Chemistry and Biology and will be adapted to the students’ levels. The success of the program will be maximised by preparing and informing students before the visit as well as by evaluating the program by the participating pupils.

https://www.facebook.com/ekfeles/

A growing STEM Discovery Week campaign every year

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.

SDW2018 activities ideas for schools!

With February upon us, I am sure you are all busy planning your STEM activities for STEM Discovery Week 2018! To help you in this creative process, please find below some ideas for activities that can be organized in your school:

Chat

Through online chats teachers and their students are invited to meet experts and find out new insights directly from their field.

To participate in a chat, teachers usually need to register their class in advance as only a limited number of classes is admitted to join and slots are allocated on a first come, first served basis.

Teachers then need time to prepare with their class and get ready to meet experts, discuss with them and with other classes from all over Europe.

Information on upcoming chats organized by different projects, are made available at: http://www.scientix.eu/events

Debate

The topic of a STEM debate will depend upon the age of the students. To start with, teachers will need to identify an interesting topic to really get their students engaged. Here are a few topic ideas that can serve as inspiration but teachers, please do not forget that the final choice of the debate topic will depend on students’ age and maturity

  • animal experimentation
  • clinical trials
  • energy use and sources
  • recycling
  • space exploration
  • organ donation

After the controversial topic of interest is chosen, teachers will either have to present this topic and both sides to their students or have the students take the topic and research both sides of it to find out what side their position is on. Students should then be broken into groups. Once they are in groups, they can discuss their thoughts on the issue. If teachers decide to give students a topic, then they can send them off to research that topic. Next, students can work in groups to record information in support of their position.

The easiest way for students to prepare for a class debate is to get their thoughts onto paper. They can write an essay where they write supporting arguments and show their evidence. Another option is to write a position paper where they take a position and must support that position with factual evidence. A third option is to use a graphic organizer to find their particular position on a topic. With this option, students must develop arguments both for and against the topic. On the debate day, they must choose which side they most strongly are for, or against. A final option is to create an argument outline, which is a basic outline of their position on the topic with supporting evidence of how they feel about the topic.

Exhibition

Science exhibitions provide innumerable benefits to students, which encourage both their educational and social development. Perhaps one of the most valuable benefits is the chance for students to show, explain and talk about their projects to others. It is particularly rewarding for fellow students, parents and the wider community to have an opportunity to see and appreciate students’ many weeks of hard work.

Festival

A science festival is a festival that showcases science and technology using the freshness and liveliness that one would expect from art or music festival. A science festival can be the umbrella for various activities including lectures, exhibitions, workshops, live demonstrations of experiments and discussions. The core content is that of science and technology, but the style comes from the world of the arts. Science festivals can be organized as part of a whole school activity or extend to the local community.

Forum

Opening a forum on a specific STEM topic of interest and asking students to comment on the posts is a nice asynchronous activity. After choosing the tool to be used, a few more steps are needed in order to ensure its success.  Expectations and guidelines need to be set in advance. Learners must know their role in the online forums, as well as how they should behave when interacting with their peers. Small details like how often are they expected to post or whether they can start their own discussion or thread are particularly important.  On the other hand, if you want to stick to shorter responses and have more control over the online discussions, then a threaded message board could be the ideal solution. When choosing an online platform, think about the learning objectives of the eLearning course and the needs of your audience. If they are a bit reluctant to join the online discussion, consider a social media platform that they are already familiar with. For example, you can create Google, LinkedIn, or Facebook groups and invite your students to become members.

Professional visiting school

In order to prepare students for what the future employment market holds, they need to have information about their future careers paths. By cooperating with STEM professionals teachers are able to bring current, real-world job experiences to their class, demonstrate the various career possibilities in STEM, have an impact on learning, motivation, and involvement provide you and your school with contacts in local businesses. A good place to start is the “STEM Professionals Go Back To School“,   a STEM Alliance scheme that encourages volunteers from STEM industry (technicians, scientist, engineers, researchers or employment and recruiting managers) and teachers to organize career talks and collaborative activities in schools.

The programme is running all year long, and functions as a database of existing and new initiatives. A guide for schools on how to organize such visit is also available here.

Visit to company / industry

Through company visits, students and teachers would get a better idea of the nature and operation of different STEM-related industries, ranging from IT and telecommunications to Space industry and chemicals.

Although visits of this type can be very rewarding, there are some issues i.e. possible health and safety risks, highly sensitive and very expensive equipment, that need to be taken into account during the planning phase. These guidelines will help ensure that any site visit goes as smoothly as possible.

Webinar

Webinar refers to a presentation, lecture, or workshop that is transmitted over the web. During a webinar, participants have the opportunity to interact remotely and in real-time with the expert(s) leading the webinar, by asking, usually in written, their questions.

To sign up for a webinar organized by a 3rd party teachers usually, need to register through the registration link available on the webinar page. As soon as the registration is received, teachers will receive a confirmation email with the link to access the webinar. Information on planned webinars can be found through the Scientix events.

If a teacher wishes to organize his own webinar for his own class then the clear scope and objectives first need to be determined. Once the speaker/expert is also identified then a script for the actual webinar needs to be prepared. Various tools can be used in order to host a webinar, from Skype and Google hangouts to WebEx and Adobe Connect.

Feeling inspired? Do you have any more ideas? Feel free to share them in the comments below!