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Last updated: 30 April 2020

Salters’ National Awards for Science Technicians

These Awards are run by the Salters’ Institute in collaboration with both CLEAPSS and SSERC.

The aim of the Awards is to highlight the important role played by school and college technician teams* in enabling high quality and effective practical work in science. The current focus is on supporting the professional learning and upskilling of technicians and, for 2020, the Awards will be made in the form of 3-year grants. *Don’t worry if you’re the sole technician in a school or college – you’re still eligible!

The awards are to be given as team awards (sole technicians are still eligible!) to Science Technicians in schools and colleges catering for students up to the age of 18 across the UK. A team could be working within or across the sciences.

Please note all those who have applied before for a Technicians Award (including former Award winners) are very welcome to apply again. 

NEW this year, the Awards will be made as follows:

  • Up to 4 grants. Each grant is £600 per year, for 3 years

We hope that the Awards will continue to heighten the awareness of the importance of Science Technicians to education in this country.

Closing date for nominations May 11.

Details here.

Free deep-sea education resources: ATLAS at Home

The EU-funded H2020 ATLAS project has developed a range of free, open-access educational resources on issues and topics related to the Atlantic Ocean and specifically the deep sea. Originally created for teachers and marine educators to use in a class environment, the fun learning activities are also ideal resources to support home-schooling, and are available in several languages.

The resources were developed by ATLAS project partners Dynamic Earth, University of Edinburgh and AquaTT. Children, parents and teachers can learn about deep sea creatures and habitats by completing their own augmented colouring sheets, that come to life when viewed through the Spectacular App. You can also try your hand at surveying the ‘ATLAS coral reef’, a composite of images from the cold-water coral reefs in Irish and Scottish waters, displayed as a floor mat featuring key deep sea animals from ATLAS research. 

For teachers, or parents leading home-schooling, there are seven education packs, each containing ready-planned lessons and activities related to the deep sea. These include multi-lingual resources covering ‘Animal, vegetable, mineral?’, a lesson explaining hydrothermal vents, the importance of the ocean, ocean acidification, and some fun experiments demonstrating the effect of high pressure in the deep sea. There is also a taxonomy challenge, and a lesson on threats to coral reefs.

With many of us still confined at home, now is the perfect time to embark on deep-sea exploration with ATLAS Atlantic Adventures.

Follow their social media channels (#ATLASatHome, Twitter @eu_atlas, Facebook @EuATLAS)  for more ocean-themed learning activities.

STEM @ Home

This is a great website from The STEM Hub at Canterbury Christ Church University with packs of resources for home learning on various topics. So far there are packs for Space and Dinosaurs. Other topics will be added regularly. 

This is what they say about the Space ones:

Announcing the launch of our first theme of SPACE on the STEM@HOME website. There are ideas for learning about SPACE which is a topic of interest to many young people. There are some suggested questions and ideas that can be asked and none of the activities require specialist equipment. Check out the songs about the constellations and create some art work about your favourite planet.

For older students there are careers in STEM videos. We asked for video input from our Local STEM Ambassadors from the South East and there has been a good response, as a result we are going to create and launch a STEM Ambassadors@Work section on the website on Friday 3rd of April.

Details here.

New resources from RSPB Cymru

The RSPB have identified a number of resources parents can deliver at home with their children for 4 to 11-year olds.

The focus of every resource is to connect learners with nature and learn more about how they can help give nature a home.

The resources will help Foundation Phase learners gain more knowledge and understanding of the world and improve their language, literacy and communication skills. They will also help with their creative development.

For teaching Key Stage 2 learners, they link to science, literacy and numeracy.

Resources include: Minibeast Safari to do in your garden; Let's talk nature activity sheets; Guides on Make homes for nature.

Details here.

Technocamps virtual resources for schools and learners

Technocamps have introduced some activity packs containing worksheets, videos and quizzes which you can complete from home!

There is an introductory video and a choice of packs for all ages.

After you submit your answers to the quizzes you will be added to a leaderboard! Get to the top for a chance to win a prize! Schools will have a leaderboard and the opportunity to win a Sphero. Each pupil participating also has the opportunity to win £50 Amazon vouchers!

Sign up for The Astro Science Challenge starting on April 27th

The Astro Science Challenge is an app where children can safely do some fun Science, Maths and English whilst learning all about space. There are six Missions and we recommend you aim to complete one Mission a week.

Suitable to be run by teachers or parents and supported by British and European Space Agency astronaut Tim Peake.  Tim is passionate about getting kids into science and thinks the Astro Science Challenge is a brilliant project.

Don't miss out - register today!

All details here.

Using CREST at home during COVID-19

The ongoing COVID-19 situation has resulted in many families working from home, meaning parents are having to juggle new ways of working while engaging children throughout the day. CREST Awards are a fantastic opportunity to showcase ways your children can be engaged in science-based activities with very few resources. 

Everything regarding the CREST Awards scheme remains unchanged, with a wealth of Awards-qualifying activities free and available on the CREST website. Teachers and parents are also still able to apply for CREST certificates online for students who have fulfilled the Awards criteria. You can read more of our response in the CREST Help Centre.

Here you can find activities selected by the BSA as a great opportunity to introduce students to science from the convenience of their homes, and help them work towards CREST Awards. 

MAGIC OF MATERIALS SUMMER SCHOOL 2020

6 Jul 2020 - 8 Jul 2020, London

This event is organised in partnership between IOM3 and St Paul's School.

The Magic of Materials Summer School is a free, three-day, two-night residential course for students at the end of year 10 (aged 14-15).  It brings to life the complex and diverse subject of materials science through a series of workshops and lectures led by teachers, academics and industry experts. The course will demonstrate the importance of the field across the sciences, engineering and technology.

This unique course is open to 24 non-fee paying school pupils from across the UK and a maximum of three pupils from any one school will be selected. Places will be allocated on the basis of a simple application form requiring a short statement from both pupils and teachers. As this course takes place during term time approval must be given by the pupil’s school, otherwise they cannot attend. We particularly encourage pupils with a keen interest in STEM, materials science and physics in particular to apply.

The closing date for applications is 30 April.

Details here.

 BBC Terrific Scientific

BBC Terrific ScientificThe campaign consists of 10 nationwide investigations and hopes to encourage one million children to take part. Terrific Scientific will also enable children to undertake genuine research using their science enquiry skills to inform the work of leading universities. The investigations are designed to be accessible and use everyday items.

Science and Wildlife Presenter, Liz Bonnin is an ambassador for Terrific Scientific and feature in this introductory film  which explains what the campaign is all about. Schools can sign up here to take part.

Details here.

Renishaw workshops for schools

For students at primary (yrs 5 and 6) and secondary schools throughout South Wales, Renishaw's education outreach workshops provide an exciting hands-on experience of real-world engineering. For teachers, they offer an ideal opportunity to pro-actively engage classes in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.

Held at our state-of-the-art Fabrication Development Centre (FDC) in Miskin, our half-day and full-day workshops are completely FREE and can even be tailored to meet the needs of individual school curricula.

With strong core curriculum links, the workshops offer a range of different engineering STEM oriented activities including: Considering a career in engineering; 3D printing and Computer Aided Design (CAD); Electronics; Engineering; Coding and software; Science - Superstar CREST awards

More details here

FREE Schools Outreach Visits by the RSPB in Cardiff & FREE RESOURCES for all schools

Our trained educators will facilitate interactive, enquiry-based discovery of the natural world in your outdoor space.

We have a selection of fantastically engaging, age-appropriate, curriculum-linked sessions, all contributing towards RSPB’s Wild Challenge Award, Eco-Schools Programme and John Muir Awards. Our trained educators bring resources and specialist equipment, adding value to the workshops.

All details here.

Request for information from Dow, Barry

Dow, Barry are working on a Talent Acquisition/Operations collaboration project to attract more female candidates to our apprenticeships and technical roles within Operations. To help with this we’re conducting various research to further improve the recruitment process and are hoping to reach out to schools in the region.

If you’re interested, please would you provide the following information:

  • School name and region
  • Ages of students at school
  • Gender diversity within the school and specifically in the STEM studies
  • Promotional opportunities at these schools – for example, flyers, posters, e-mails to students/parents, etc.
  • Database of STEM graduates from previous years and if we’re allowed to send out e-mails to these contacts about opportunities at Dow aligned to their education.

The person to contact at Dow is Fiona Low FJLow@dow.com

Registrations for Mission X 2020 are now open!

Mission X: Train Like an Astronaut is an international free educational challenge, focusing on fitness and nutrition, that encourages students to train like an astronaut. 

Teams of students complete activities to earn points and help the Mission X mascots, Luna and Leo, walk to the Moon. Two sets of hands-on classroom activities support the challenge: physical activities, which help students develop strength, endurance, coordination, and spatial awareness; and scientific activities which focus on STEM subjects and allow students to practice scientific reasoning and teamwork.

Target age: 8-12, but activities can be adapted for all ages!

Timeline: January 2020 – May 2020

Registrations are open until April 17.

Details here.

Newport Transporter Bridge teachers' survey

Can you help one of the most iconic bridges in Wales?

The Newport Transporter Bridge team is applying to the National Lottery Heritage Fund to support the repair, restoration and interpretation of the Bridge.  As part of this project a new programme of activities, visits and resources will be put in place for schools and colleges, with activities potentially supporting science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), history, geography, literacy and art & design. We also hope to offer volunteering, work placements and apprenticeships for young people. 

We would really like your input to help us shape our ideas at this exciting stage in the project and this survey outlines some of those ideas. This survey should take about 5-10 minutes to complete. All completed surveys will be entered into a draw to win a £50 Amazon voucher. 

Survey here.

Girls Who Code

Girls Who Code is an international non-profit organisation working to close the gender gap in technology by teaching girls computer science, bravery, and sisterhood. Our free programming is now available in the UK.

Women make up 50% of the UK workforce but less than 15% of STEM jobs.

Computing is where the jobs are — and where they will be in the future — but women and girls are being left behind. While interest in computer science declines over time, the biggest drop-off happens during a girl’s teenage years. By university, women account for less than a third of STEM undergraduates in the UK.

Girls Who Code is changing that. Since launching in the United States in 2012, Girls Who Code has reached 185,000 girls through its programmes, and 100 million people through campaigns, advocacy work, and 13-book New York Times best-selling series.

Girls Who Code Clubs are free programmes that get girls ages 11-18 excited about coding and computer science. Clubs can run before, during or after-school, on weekends or over the summer. In Clubs, girls engage in fun and simple online coding tutorials, build community through interactive activities, learn about inspiring role models in tech, and work together to design solutions to real-world problems facing their communities.

More details here.

Free Marine Science Workshops for Schools

The Sea Cadets with Seafarers UK are offering marine science workshops to KS3 students across the UK, completely free of charge.

This fun and informative two-hour workshop session focuses upon buoyancy, exploring some of the scientific principles behind buoyancy and displacement and ends with a team challenge to float a vessel to support the most cargo.

More information here