Eye Eye Eye! Can we make Our Pupils Pupil's See Better?
That was the question 3rd and 4th class posed for their Science Blast Investigation this year. The 'real life' scientists who judged the project in the RDS were 'blown away' by the knowledge and research that the class carried out. For a highly entertaining and educational summary of our project check out our podcast series below. Every episode was written presented and recorded by 3rd and 4th class. Simply click on the episode to listen. Enjoy
Episode 6: Quiz
A Key new development for our school is that we are now sharing our knowledge via podcasts! Check out the Episodes below to be educated and Entertained!! Enjoy!
This year we are hoping to be recognised for our continued hard work in the area of STEM education. As part of the SFI Curious Minds Awards programme we have applied for the Platinum Award. The highest award achieveable.
As part of this Award we have to set ourselves some unique targets for the promotion of STEM in our school.
Our goal is as follows:
We aim this year to raise STEM awareness across the school community by increasing the frequency of exposure and the variety of focus of our STEM Showcase Days.
Building on what we know to be a successful and engaging strategy of delivering STEM projects for the purpose of exhibiting to a wider 'public' audience we hope to encourage all stake holders to engage on a more meaningful level with the STEM subjects and recognise them as part of every day life.
This 'deeper' engagement is recognised as being one of the key factors of the most recent Science Foundation Ireland Strategy where it states that one of the key benefits of the successful implementation of said strategy will be to 'Empower and Inspire Deeper Public Engagement'
What will we do to achieve our goal?
In order to achieve our goal we will greatly increase the number of opportunities that our pupils get to take part in STEM Showcase Events. These will include but are not limited to:
Whole school Assemblies
EU Codeweek Workshops
Class Science Fair.
Science Blast Science Fair (3rd to 6th)
Local Science Fairs (Community/School Clusters)
Open Science Fair (individuals with open investigations)
What will success look like for all stakeholders in the school community ?
For our pupils we feel that :
Success will be that as their confidence in STEM subjects grows so too will their familiarity and confidence in the communication of their learning. From this we expect to see increased motivation and engagement with the STEM subjects.
For our teachers we feel that:
If we are successful in delivering more opportunities for Science demonstrations and Exhibitions then our classes will be challenged to start from self generated trigger questions to hypothesise, predict and investigate before bringing their findings to share with the public or school friends.
Alongside that key motivational benefit having project work in classrooms will benefit the teachers by:
Helping Implement the requirements of the Digital Strategy.
Give genuine context to learning improve intrinsic motivation
Providing a Range of opportunities for Assessment both formative and summative. And teacher peer and self assessment.
Generating Increased opportunities for inclusion through group work in mixed ability teams
Improved relationship between teachers the wider school community, other schools etc
For our parents we feel that success will result in:
A greater willingness to get involved with Scientific Inquiry at home by 'Asking the Scientific Question' and following with their children as they work towards their next Science Exhibition/ Project.
A greater recognition of what scientific exploration looks like for our pupils.
A wider promotion of the concept that we are all capable of being scientists by firstly, posing a question, then working scientifically to uncover an answer and finally sharing those findings with others.