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Outreach Activities in Primary Schools. Alison Rivett. Outreach In Primary Schools. Why? Who? What? When? Where? How?. Why work with Primary?. Great enthusiasm & interest at this age BUT Evidence that attitudes to science start to decline at a young age
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Outreach Activities in Primary Schools Alison Rivett
Outreach In Primary Schools • Why? • Who? • What? • When? • Where? • How?
Why work with Primary? • Great enthusiasm & interest at this age • BUTEvidence that attitudes to science start to decline at a young age • Science is a big part of the primary curriculum • BUTMany primary teachers are not that confident in teaching science • It’s fun! Murphy & Beggs (2005), Welcome Trust ‘Primary Horizons’ report (2006)
The Opportunities... • Encourage and enthuse children about science • Bring authentic, practical science (& scientists) into the classroom • Help pupils (teachers & parents) to see science can be fun and interesting • Bring the WOW factor! Engage, Influence & Improve
Who are they? • Pre-school/Reception/Foundation ~ under 5’s • Key Stage 1/Infants ~ ages 5-7 ~ Years 1 & 2 • Key Stage 2/Juniors ~ ages 7-11 ~ Years 3-6
Science in Primary Schools • Key Stage 1 - pupils observe, explore and ask questions about living things, materials and phenomena. They do simple experiments and collect evidence to help them answer questions and link this to simple scientific ideas. • Key Stage 2 - pupils learn about a wider range of living things, materials and phenomena. They carry out more systematic investigations and begin to explain things using simple models and theories.
Finding out more... • Primary curriculum *currently under review http://curriculum.qcda.gov.uk (primary curriculum subjects science) • Assessing Pupils’ Progress (APP) & Assessment for Learning (AfL) • Focus on ‘enquiry’, not learning facts
Where & When • Schools • Teacher CPD • Summer Playschemes • Nurseries & Playgroups • Brownies & Cubs / Rainbows & Beavers • Family events e.g. Festivals, Science Fairs, ‘Bring your Child to Work’ days...
What – Examples of Activities • Bristol ChemLabS ~ Science Days & ChemArt • Institute of Physics ~ Physicists In Primary Schools & Physics Busking
Bristol ChemLabS Science Days • Demonstration Assemblies & Science Workshops www.chemlabs.bris.ac.uk
Exciting Demonstrations • Various themes • Last 40-60 mins, suitable for whole school • Lots of experiments & interaction (no powerpoint!) • Enthuse & entertain
Hands-on Science Workshops • Mainly for pupils in Y5 & 6 • Circus of 3 different practicals each lasting 30-40 mins, for a class at a time. • Reinforce measurement skills, fair testing, investigation and cooperation.
ChemArt • An annual gallery of dazzling & intriguing images drawn from chemistry research • Any school can access the images online • Used to stimulate literacy and creativity through poetry & prose writing competitions ~ cross-curricular • Brings real research into the classroom
Physicists In Primary Schools • Presentations, demos & guidance, all free to download • 12 topics related to primary curriculum • Developed by a team from the University of Sheffield with EPSRC funding • Presentations start with basic concepts and end by linking physics research with children’s everyday experiences • Activities are fun, use mainly articles to be found in the home and involve the whole class www.iop.org/activity/outreach/resources/pips/index.html (www.iop.org > Activities > Public Engagement > Resources > Physicists in Primary Schools)
Physics Busking • Simple Hands-on Experiments • Easy, Interesting & Fun! I hear I forget I see I remember I DO I UNDERSTAND • Use in many different contexts ~ Science Fairs, Festivals, Open Days, Schools Workshops www.physics.org/marvinandmilo www.iop.org > Activities > Public Engagement > Resources > Activity ideas > Physics To Go
Bath Taps Into Science • Annual 2-day Science Fair in National Science & Engineering Week (March) • IOP/Bath Physics Students Hands-on Stand • School Groups & Public Audience
Useful Resources • Science In School ~ Europe-wide teaching resources www.scienceinschool.org • ASE ~ Primary Upd8, Primary Science journal www.ase.org.uk & www.primaryupd8.org.uk • AZSTT ~ Funding for projects & teaching resources www.azteachscience.co.uk • BBC Bitesize ~ Interactive learning content www.bbc.co.uk/schools/bitesize
Developing Your Own Activity • Make it practical & hands-on • Think about context & relevance • What is your USP? • Look at what is out there already • Talk to teachers – what does the audience want & need, what can’t they do? • Test & pilot activities – evaluate to improve
Students as Role Models • Postgrads / Undergrads • Young & enthusiastic • Develops their skills • Cheap(er) & more available EVENT: Student Involvement in STEM Activities ~ Is it a good idea, what works and how can we make it better? Monday 14th November 2011, at the University of Bath
Talking Primary • Use appropriate language & concepts • Be clear about what they are doing and why • Give instructions in small chunks & check comprehension • Encourage their ideas & explanations – build on what they know
Working in Primary Schools • Think about safe equipment for little hands + take everything you need • Often more flexible with timings etc, but can be difficult to bring groups out of school • Can be very (over) enthusiastic – the teacher remains responsible for their children • Practice your teacher voice & crowd control techniques
Evaluation • Keep it Simple! • Evaluate to Improve • Capture teacher feedback • Make feedback part of the activity • Think outside the questionnaire e.g. ‘Write A Postcard’, Observation, Comments Boards, Drawings… ‘Generic Learning Outcomes’ (GLOs) ~ useful evaluation framework
Publicising your activity • How do busy teachers find out? • Obvious links on your institution’s website • Short clear info: what/when/who/cost • Contact tel no and/or email that will be answered • Schools often work in clusters – word of mouth is powerful
Practical considerations • Health & Safety (CLEAPSS Advice) • CRB Checks for everyone involved in delivering (STEM Ambassadors Scheme) • Training for working with that age-group (ask your Education Dept) • Charging? Full/Subsidised/Nominal cost – make it clear who is funding the activity
Go and have some fun! • Thank you very much • Any questions, comments...