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STEAM education is a crucial topic for next generations. The European Commission suggests to improve STEAM education for an early age of students. We know children are curios and have a natural disposition to Science but later sometimes they lose this interest. I am a secondary Maths and Science teacher and I decided to promote Science in a different way. I asked to the municipality of my village the possibility to use the local public library and I organized two events for children between 5 and 8 years old. I choose Saturday morning because schools are closed. Two of my colleagues and one of my oldest students helped me during the events.
The format of each event was:
- Welcome of students
- Animated reading of one/two books related to science
- Snack break
- Observations, drawings, activities and experiment about the Science topic.
Description of the events:
In the first event we used these two books:
The first is about plants and the second about errors that made possible new discoveries. Later we observed leaves, mosses and flowers with magnifying glass and microscope. I asked also to realize pictures about the topic and I used an augmented reality app to increase motivation and curiosity. We talked about scientific method and the importance to learn from our errors.
In the second event we used these two books:
The first is about water cycle and the second one is about the importance to take care and be patient in order to have beautiful flowers.
We observed water properties, for example capillarity, reflection and refraction. We analyzed a drop of pond water with the microscope and we discovered a lot of microscopic beings such as diatoms and protozoa. We also underlined the importance of water and pupils colored drops of water.
At the end of each meeting, children were very happy and didn’t want to stop and come back home. I suggested them borrowing some books and continuing their reading and learning at home.
Some of the parents stayed with us during meeting and they participated in our activities because Science is for all!
The location outside the school makes children more interested and curious about Science. They were not worried about test or exams and they learnt together in a funny and not boring way.
Mariapia Borghesan is Maths and Science teacher at a lower Secondary School in a rural village in the North of Italy. She is also a Scientix ambassador and she loves to promote STEAM in innovative ways.