Oct 112018
 

Tomorrow’s Engineers Week  provides a unique opportunity for engineers, employers, universities and schools to help inspire the next generation of engineers.

Download toolkits of ideas on how to take part.

This year’s plans include the first Tomorrow’s Engineers Week Big Assembly; offering schools across the UK the chance to take part in the same assembly at the same time.

Oct 112018
 

The PSTT Children’s Conference at PSEC is an exciting and unique opportunity for schools to participate in a dedicated primary science conference. The event will take place on Friday 7th June 2019 at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre as part of the international Primary Science Education Conference (PSEC).

The theme of the conference is Climate Change, Sustainable Living and Environmental Science. Schools will be encouraged to develop their own projects focused on finding a local issue and developing solutions for it and then share their work: either by attending the Conference or submitting a poster/film of their activity.

Schools can register their Interest at https://www.primaryscienceconference.org/childrens-conference and download the free Climate Change Teachers’ Project Pack. The pack has ideas for projects in ten different areas; as well as advice on developing partnerships, planning projects and a Climate Change Special Topical Science Update.

Look out for more information in late 2018 when schools will be able to apply to present their projects at the PSTT Children’s Conference at PSEC in June 2019.

Keep up to date with what’s going on:

Follow @pstt_whyhow on Twitter

#PSECchildrensconf

Join our ‘PSTT Children’s Conference at PSEC’ Facebook group

Aug 202018
 

Just weeks after unveiling the outcome of a £2M fundraising campaign, in the form of a new exhibition and science learning suite, Dundee Science Centre has secured £1.45M to transform the visitor attraction into an even more accessible community hub.

The Inspiring Science Fund is co-funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and Wellcome. The scheme supports science centres to rethink what they do and what they offer to the public. Dundee Science Centre is currently fundraising for an additional £340K to reach its ambitious targets.

The news comes hot on the heels of the re-opening of the top floor following an ambitious redevelopment which doubled the upper floor space through a mezzanine extension, now housing the Medical Marvels exhibition and much improved facilities for the Science Learning Institute.

This latest tranche of funding will transform Dundee Science Centre into an inspiring community hub and lifelong learning resource which brings people together and attracts new audiences within the region. The spaces and programmes will be co-designed with communities from the design stage right through to prototyping and testing, and influenced by their needs to ensure it will feel welcoming, safe and accessible for people of all backgrounds.

Rebecca Erskine, Head of Development, Dundee Science Centre said, “We are incredibly excited to build on our existing relationships with our dynamic partners and community groups and invite in new audiences who may feel as though science isn’t for them to join us on a journey to truly shape and co-design exhibits, environments and programmes which are all influenced by their needs.”

Not only will the ground floor be developed into a custom-built hub with improved scope for events, talks and workshops celebrating community work, but made more user-friendly to those affected by sensory and other conditions.

The transformation will also see the creation of a brand new welcome / reception area, dedicated under 7’s exhibition area focused on child development, a sensory zone and new exhibition space with exhibits which encourage social interactions.

The coffee shop will also be replaced by ‘The Gathering Place’ where visitors can socialise and relax with intriguing injections of science, again all shaped by the community.

Linda Leuchars, CEO, Dundee Science Centre said, “We are absolutely delighted to have secured this new funding which will allow us to take all the work we’ve done over the last 18 years to the next level.  We are already proud to be leaders in the field of community engagement but now it’s about exploring where we can take that, and really pushing the barriers of science engagement.”

Echoing the sentiment of inclusion is Paul Clancy, Executive Director of Children and Families Service from Dundee City Council, one of Dundee Science Centre’s partners – “Dundee Science Centre’s ambitious plans will play an important role our aims to tackle social inequalities and provide our children and young people with the best start to life. CONNECT will be an excellent opportunity for Dundee Science Centre and Dundee City Council to explore new and greater ways of working together and to learn from each other’s practice. CONNECT will firmly place Dundee Science Centre and science within the tourism, education and cultural fabric of the city and we are excited to be involved in this journey.”

In addition to the physical transformation, a new website will also be developed, again underpinned by the themes of CONNECT – inclusion, accessibility and diversity.  The Science Centre team will also be trained  by specialist organisations to ensure that the products and programmes on offer are fit for purpose, accessible and address local needs.

It is hoped that talks with local community groups will commence during Dundee Science Festival in October 2018.  The new look Centre should be unveiled in Spring 2021.

The project partners bring expertise from a range of sectors from community learning and development, academia, formal education and health care. They are – Dundee City Council, Education Scotland, Dundee and Angus ADHD Support group, V&A Dundee, University of Dundee, Abertay University, University of St Andrews, Dundee and Angus College and NHS Tayside.

For more information, telephone (01382) 228800 or visit www.dundeesciencecentre.org.uk.

Jan 042017
 

£1 million to develop teacher education options

Innovative new ways of developing teachers of the future are to be created, backed by over £1 million from the Scottish Government Attainment Scotland Fund.

The proposals include:

  • Moves to get new teachers into the classroom more quickly for priority Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects
  • Targeted help for former teachers looking to return
  • The development of teachers able to work in both primary and secondary
  • Fast track routes combining post-graduate education with the probation year
  • Offering more joint degrees in teaching and specialist subjects such as chemistry

The plans, which will bring more than 200 new teachers into the profession, have been put forward by the Scottish Council of Deans of Education and are aimed at helping tackle teacher recruitment challenges being experienced in some subjects in certain parts of the country.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney has revealed the plans on a visit to the University of Dundee. He said:

“Teachers are the bedrock of Scotland’s education system and I want to ensure we do everything we can to attract talented graduates to a career in teaching. The quality of teaching is key to helping pupils achieve and to our aspiration of closing the attainment gap.

“These innovative proposals are designed to do just that while, crucially, maintaining the traditionally high standard of teaching in Scotland. We will not change the standard we expect new recruits to attain before they become fully-fledged teachers, but we are determined to broaden the routes into the classroom and speed up the process.

“This is exactly the sort of collaborative approach we need if we are to realise our ambition of achieve excellence and equity in Scottish education, and I am pleased to support it with £1 million from our Attainment Scotland Fund.”

Ken Muir, Chief Executive of the General Teaching Council Scotland, said:

“Flexibility is crucial when trying to attract new people into the teaching profession and to address the issue of teacher shortages. GTC Scotland is at the forefront in promoting a wide range of new and innovative routes into teaching for those wishing to join the profession in Scotland.

“As the accrediting body for teacher education programmes in Scotland, GTC Scotland has the important role in ensuring that these new routes maintain and enhance the high standards of teaching and teacher education expected within our graduate teaching profession.

“It is important that these routes have been developed by the ITE Universities with partnership working in mind and GTCS stands ready to fast-track their accreditation as part of our work to enhance teacher professionalism that will benefit children and young people across the country.”

Background

 The proposals include:

Accelerated routes combining PGDE and Induction Year

  • University of Dundee – fast track training that combines post-graduate education with the probation year focusing on STEM graduates
  • University of Strathclyde – STEM graduates would complete a PGDE and achieve the Standard for Full Registration alongside a Masters degree

Joint degrees with a secondary specialism

  • University of Stirling – adding Technology to the subjects Stirling already works with Heriot Watt to deliver shared concurrent degrees for Physics and Chemistry
  • University of the West of Scotland – extending their concurrent degree programme to include Physics and Chemistry.

Primary specialism

  • University of Stirling – qualify more primary teachers with additional subject specialisms including Literacy, Numeracy, Additional Support Needs and STEM subjects
  • University of Glasgow – qualify teachers to work between P6 and S3 in Mathematics

Current Local Authority employees into education

  • University of Aberdeen – expand to all authorities Aberdeen’s distant learning programme for local authority staff becoming qualified primary teachers
  • University of Dundee – expand Dundee’s Learn to Teach programme to include secondary teacher education, and to all local authorities

Returners to teaching

  • University of Edinburgh – develop and expand their course that helps prepare qualified teachers who have been out of teaching for a while, or who have never taught in Scotland, for the classroom

Newly qualified teachers from Ireland

  • University of Glasgow – recognising high level of teacher unemployment in Ireland, recruit recently qualified teachers, such as those with STEM qualifications, to undertake further study while they work in a partner local authority
Jun 022016
 

SEPA LogoSEPA is looking to expand its existing volunteer rainfall observer program. This work includes the development of an online data entry portal and data visualisation facility.

To complement this work, SEPA is piloting collaboration with around 40 schools nationally. For the pilot we would like a good mix of both primary and secondary educators.

As well as providing useful data for SEPA and the Met Office, the project will hopefully develop a variety of skills and educational opportunities

What’s involved?

SEPA will supply a raingauge and the school will be required to find an optimal location within the school grounds. The raingauge is supplied with a bracket that will need to be attached to a wooden post using screws and a screw driver. Each morning as close to 9am GMT as possible, someone from the school is required to record the rainfall that has accumulated in the gauge. The rainfall measurement can then be entered in the data entry website whenever it is convenient. Although it is most beneficial for us to have a measurement be taken every day, it is OK to have some periods of no measurement such as over weekends and holidays so long as the next entry made reflects that it is a cumulative reading.

The value of the data record increases with age and so ideally we would like our volunteer schools to view this as a long term, ongoing venture. More detailed information will be disseminated to schools taking part. The data entry website can be viewed at https://envscot-csportal.org.uk/rainfallobs/

If you are interested in taking part please contact Cordelia Menmuir at email: cordelia.menmuir@sepa.org.uk Tel: 01738 448 835

Further resources to download:

SEPA Rainfall_Citizen Science

Rainfall Observer_Project Overview

Jun 022016
 

SEWeb-Logo-Two-Lines-with-backgroundWhy we built the portal

Citizen Science is really important to the partners in Scotland’s Environment. It generates data which are used to make decisions, set priorities and debate issues, but just as importantly, it promotes citizen education, empowerment, health and wellbeing. By building this portal, we want to improve the support that is available to Citizen Science projects, especially in relation to gathering data, making it easy to view and understand, and easy to discuss.

What the portal does

The portal helps us to bring information on a variety of projects into one place, covering topics as diverse as weather, soils, air quality, water quality and protected species. We want to make it easier for participants to take part in projects, find a home for new projects they have created, see their contribution and discuss it with others. The portal also provides a place for us to try out new approaches towards data gathering and engagement, new tools and new resources.

Visit the portal at: https://envscot-csportal.org.uk/

Visit Scotland’s Environment website at: http://www.environment.scotland.gov.uk/get-learning/

Feb 162016
 

scotlands environment

This month Scotland’s Environment newsletter focuses on air pollution.

If you’re looking for resources to help discuss air quality in the classroom, then you’ll find lots of Curriculum for Excellence aligned resources on Get Learning | Scotland’s Environment Web .

Here’s some other resources that will support learning about air quality:

To keep informed about other teaching and learning resources, subscribe to the monthly newsletter.

You can also download a copy of the Citizen Science & Curriculum for Excellence briefing paper, packed with lots of other excellent resources from here.

SEPA Logoeducation scotland logo

Feb 052016
 

SAC LogoApplications have opened for the £1.5 million Innovation Fund to help schools close the attainment gap.

Schools can choose whether to apply quickly for funds to run projects that are ready to start in March 2016, or to consider bids for the 2016/17 financial year. The Fund is open to all publicly funded primary, secondary and special schools in Scotland which are not already benefitting from the Attainment Scotland Fund.

SAC Innovation Fund

Funds of £3,000-£10,000 (per school) are available for projects that will help children and young people experiencing socio economic disadvantage. Applications are encouraged from partnerships of schools working collaboratively or individual schools.

Under the twin track application scheme, schools can apply:

  • Fast track: by 21 February 2016 for projects that will start in March. Notification will be given between 1 and 4 March.
  • Standard track: by 31 March 2016 for projects that will start in the year from April 2016. Notification will be given by the end of April.

Proposals should have a particular focus on literacy, numeracy or health and wellbeing. They can be new ideas, or a project with a specific focus, building on what has had the greatest impact within a school, cluster or group of schools. This may include projects involving parental / family engagement and career long professional development or those that help develop and realise aspirations for children and young people.

The guidance and application form are available:

Information is also on the #SAC Scottish Attainment Challenge Glow site (login required), where practitioners can seek advice and collaborate on applications.

Get help with accessing #SAC Glow site

Feb 012016
 
NMS Logo
LEGO® is more than a toy. It makes architects, sculptors and storytellers of us all.

This spring, renowned brick artist, Warren Elsmore and his team display some of their most beautiful and intricate mini-buildings and models in our Grand Gallery. To add to the set, they will also be on-site, building a special three metre model of our very own museum.

But don’t let them have all the fun. Join us for some hands-on LEGO® brick activities from February till April. Get creative in the Builders’ Yard, help us make a special sculpture of one of our most-loved museum objects, or build your own masterpiece.

Follow our #BUILDIT updates on social media.

  • Join us for our free LEGO® brick activities from January to April.
  • Look out for more BUILD IT! activities at the museum during Edinburgh International Science Festival (26 Mar to 10 Apr 2016).

 

For information about events at the National Museum of Scotland click here.

For information about events at the National Museum of Flight click here.

For information about events at the National Museum of Rural Life click here.

For information about events at the National War Museum click here.

Jan 282016
 

Teaching is one of the most challenging, yet rewarding, careers you can choose.

In September, the Scottish Government launched a campaign to encourage more teachers to enter the profession. The recruitment campaign will focus on attracting teachers to STEM subjects – Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths – in particular to teach Physics, Maths and Computing. The ‘Inspiring Teachers’ campaign will feature figureheads from Scottish business, industry, media and science, sharing their memories of the teachers who inspired them and helped them get where they are today.

The #inspiringteachers campaign seeks to attract more high-quality, passionate teachers into the profession, particularly in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths where there is a demand.

Watch some films about #inspiringteachers at

·         Katie https://youtu.be/2ituLmzA9tY

·         Tiam https://youtu.be/r2AwVuI02oY

·         Leith Panel https://youtu.be/ENIX0ewyQTA  

·         Gillespie Panel https://youtu.be/XybLNDPlzus

More information on the #inspiringteachers campaign and teaching in Scotland can be found here.

 

 

 

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