About Teresita Gravina

Teresita Gravina is a Scientix and Europeana Ambassador for Italy, she teach Science in Liceo Manzoni, Caserta (Italy) and she is member of Equipe formativa territoriale della Campania.

STEAM has no Gender

This year we decide to participate in the STEM Discovery Campaign with an awareness-raising event on the topic of the gender gap in STEM. Together with my colleague Donatella Sandias organized a multidisciplinary civic education activity focusing on SGDs 5 for all the students from Liceo Manzoni, Caserta.

The activity was presented to Liceo Manzoni teachers that have been involved in training about digital tools in education (Canva and digipad) and was a way to promote the use of this tool in the classes. To make it simple, all the digital tools have been included in a google site,(in Italian) where each page introduces an activity. But the main aim was to create a civic education activity for students to raise interest in STEAM and help them to understand that STEAM is for all!

In the following paragraphs, we will explore all the steps included and the activity.

What do you need to be competent in STEM?

We start the activity with this question, clarifying that there are no right o wrong questions, just opinions. Students have to answer the question on a digipad after a short discussion in class. It is funny that most of the students indicated skills like needed “perseverance”,” motivation“,” being smart“, skills that are not really related to STEM, which means most of them really don’t know what they need to be proficient in STEM. The next question was “Do you think you are proficient in STEM?” here we have different answers depending on the real skills of students, but the answer was also strongly affected by their self-confidence, in particular Girls.

Do you already have STEM skills?

We start the second part of the activity with other questions about one of the most used social media by students: Instagram. Here you have some questions:

  • Do you create stories combining together video and music? (that means they have some basic technology skills)
  • Do you plan what you are going to communicate with the background of your images? (that means you have some Art skills)
  • Do you regularly check how many people have visualized your story and compare data from different stories? (that means you have some basic mathematics skills)

So we introduce to students STEAM showing them these types of skills could be already included in their background, and we can ask them if they think they will be considered STEM citizens. I have to say that most of them were surprised to discover that they already have some basic STEAM skills and they were happy to define themself as STEAM citizens!

Let’s search

This activity starts with one question:

Do you think gender is relevant to defining STEAM skills?

I am so sad I hadn’t a camera to take a picture of their faces when they answer the question because I saw their faces so convinced that gender has no relevance in having or not STEAM skills.

But we would love to share with them what society thinks, to be aware! For this reason, we propose students to make simple research on Europeana, which is a great source of educational and teaching material, and most of them refer to the past, to show them what happened in the last century about the gender gap in STEAM. As in Italian languages we have masculine and feminine, we ask them to search scientist (he/his), and then scientist (she/her). Before to make the research some students were already supposing that we will not find any female scientists, which was really sad for me. On the google sites, they have a digipad where they can write what they have found. It could be an idea to make the research also in other languages to find if the results it is the same.

Take action!

SO we found a problem! and what we can do? I ask students to collaborate to create a campaign to underline that STEAM has no gender! we prepare a template in Canva that they can use to show which skills are important to be proficient in STEAM. In the template, we use a mannequin and let the students free to personalize it and underling or not his/her gender. After creating their artwork they upload these on a digipad, where they can also add votes, so we can decide the best work, that will be printed and posted all around the school.


All the world is STEM: supporting Italian teacher in participating in SDW22

This year I am going to celebrate my “sixth birthday” as a Scieintix ambassador and for this reason, I organized an activity to involve as many as possible STEM teachers from my region in SDC2022. I am one of the Scientix ambassadors from Campania, an Italian region in the south of Italy, and before the covid pandemic together with the other ambassadors, we managed to organize workshops or events to present Sceintix to Campanian teachers. To organize this event we collaborate with ANISNCampania and Caserta Planetarium, trying to highlight the relevance of networking in STEM. But during the pandemic, it was very difficult to work together, due to the time needed to organize online lessons and all the other teaching activities.

From September 2021 I started a new job! because I was selected as a member of Equipe formativa Territoriale, (EFT ) a group of 200 teachers from all around Italy that work to support transformation in education with a focus on promoting the use of digital tools in teaching. I am part of the EFT Campania, and I think this was the occasion to re-start dissemination about Sceintix to Campanian teachers!

For this reason, I dedicate a webinar, held on 29 March, from the Spring digital Campain, organized by EFT Campania. on SDC2022. The webinar topic was how to participate in the STEM Discovery Campaign 2022. This was the occasion to introduce to scientix a new group of Campania teachers that have been never involved in our previous activity as scientix ambassadors. First of all, I presented them Scientix repository! because teachers are always looking for new activities ready to be used in class! and I invite them in participating in the Translation Campain to increase the number of resources translated into Italian. Afterward, we discuss relevant points in STEM education, the collaboration between STEM teachers, and how to integrate STEM topics. I have to say that the participants in the webinar have no doubt, as you can see from the image created by a digistorm

Results of Brainstorming (moltissimo=  so much molto= a lot  tantissimo = so much)

(moltissimo=  so much molto= a lot  tantissimo = so much)

Even if collaboration is so important in STEM in Italian upper secondary school it could be really complicated, and we discuss which strategy could be used. From 2021 in Italy we have compulsory activities of civic education, and this was my suggestion ad opportunity for STEM teachers working with the same student group to collaborate. Moreover, as Equipe formativa Territoriale, (EFT ) this year we work on a competition for teachers called Innovamenti, to engage them in using innovative teaching methodology. As an example, we proposed civic education activities based on all the teaching methodologies proposed. If you want to have a look at Italian teachers’ work you can search the #innovamenti on Twitter and Instagram.

Finally, during the workshop, we discussed other ways to integrate STEM activities from different topics, and participants were invited to share their work o a digipad. It seems that collaboration was very important also for these activities, as was underlined by a participant that talked about her experience in and Etwinning project, which helped so much also at the beginning of the pandemic when she has to organize online teaching activities.

As usual, at the end of the webinar, in which have been involved 35 teachers, te we took a virtual photo group, I ask participants to create an avatar with digiface and upload it on a shared digital board. Teachers seem shy but someone has added their “face” in the photo.

Virtual photo group at the end of the activity

I was really happy to have the opportunity to come back to disseminate Scientix between Campanian teachers, and I hope they will contribute to SDC2022 and start to participate in other scientix activities.

Where is the green?


This learning scenario was designed during the NBS MOOC aiming at introducing students to green management, they will learn about relevance, availability, and green maintenance. Students from different groups collaborate to design a green plan for our city Caserta. At the end of the activity, the plan designed by students will be shown to the city mayor, to underline that (future) citizens have a voice and ideas.

The implementation context

This multidisciplinary activity was carried out with 6th graders (10-11 years old) from ICs Da Vinci Lorenzini, Caserta. The topic and Teachers involved were: Science, Italian (language subject), Mathematics, Technology and were carried out in three different classes (1D,1E,1F). In total, have been involved, 5 teachers and 54 students. This learning scenario was designed for a multidisciplinary activity of Civic Education, which was reintroduced in Italian National indication from this year with a multidisciplinary approach. The students have no previous familiarity with the topic and tools and all the activities were carried out in remote learning from 10 of March to 9 of April 2021 using Gsuite for education.

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Mitosis vs Meiosis: an online science lesson

Author: Teresita Gravina

My name is Teresita Gravina and I am a Math and Science Teacher in IC De Amicis- Da Vinci a lower secondary school in Caserta, Italy.

Due to the Covid19 emergency the school in my region are closed since 5th of March. We had to move our lesson to online platform in one night without bring nothing from school laboratory. Since then I am working hard, trying to do my best, to ensure the best learning experience for my students. This is a national emergency and everyone can participate doing what he/she can, I am a teacher, so I teach 😀

When the school closed I was to begin to introduce cell and their functions to my 6 grade students. I am used to include in every topic a practical activity and students in general loves it (not always the same for the parents) so I decided to organize an activity about mitosis, meiosis and their differences. I organized the activity thanks to a Google module. In this you can add photo, ask question and receive answers, send an assessment and students can share with you their files. You can have a look at the activity here, and if you want to use it, please let me know and I will invite you to modify it and use in your class (remote or real).

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STEM and the city

On 24 April, we organised a “field trip” in the city centre of Caserta in order to find traces of the different steps of taken in the city planning throughout its history. For this activity, students were involved who participated in PON inclusione sociale for the learning module “Topos e cronos: Terra di lavoro – dalla centuriazione romana ai giorni nostri”, by IC Vanvitelli. This project aimed at helping students with difficulties in mathematics, science and technology to improve their skills, interest and motivation in relation to those topics. We have been working since March on a learning activity about how to design and read topographic and geographical maps, in particular the use of web tools of software (like google maps, GIS), useful for designing personalised maps. We decided to create a map that summarised what we see nowadays in Caserta’s city planning, which is inherited from past populations that lived in our area. Moreover, they learn what kinds of STEM professionals work on those topics and the perspectives of STEM professionals who work in this field.

During the field trip, we walked along the Caserta city centre. We used apps that allowed us to view maps and track paths, in order to tag on a map some artifacts, buildings and/or streets that preserve ancient city planning. The students used their mobile phones or tablets to take photos of those places and upload on a map, in order to take note about the activity and make a resume of the field trip.

It was a nice experience, because most of the students admitted that they had already seen the places we visited, but they did not pay attention to those, but learning about the history of those place helped them to keep in mind important steps for their city.

Il 24 aprile si è svolta l’uscita didattica che ha coinvolto gli studenti del corso “Topos e cronos: Terra di lavoro – dalla centuriazione romana ai giorni nostri”, un progetto finanziato del PON inclusione sociale  tenuto presso L’IC Vanvitelli di Caserta. Il corso è finalizzato ad aiutare gli studenti con difficoltĂ  in matematica, scienze e tecnologia e migliorare le loro competenze, interesse e motivazione in questi ambiti. Questa attivitĂ  mi ha permesso di introdurre ai ragazzi quali sono le figure STEM coinvolte nello studio urbanistico di una cittĂ , e quali possono essere i possibili sbocchi professionali di questo tipo di studi. Prima di questa uscita didattica i ragazzi hanno lavorato sulla progettazione e lettura delle carte topografiche e geografiche e sull’uso di strumenti web e software che permettono di realizzare mappe personalizzate.

L’uscita si è svolta nel centro della città di Caserta, lo scopo era individuare le tracce corrispondenti all’Urbanizzazione relativa alle diverse fasi storiche della nostra città. Durante l’uscita gli studenti hanno utilizzato app che permettono di visualizzare mappe e tracciare percorsi, grazie a queste abbiamo realizzato una mappa dove sono riportati i siti della nostra città che abbiamo visitato ed il loro ruolo ed utilizzo in diverse epoche storiche.

E ‘stata una bella esperienza, i ragazzi hanno osservato la loro cittĂ  sotto una luce diversa, prestando attenzione ad edifici, opere d’arte e luoghi che vedono ogni giorno, ma senza prestare attenzione ai dettagli che raccontano la loro storia e ci permettono di ricostruire la loro storia.