Category Archives: Sciences

Is famous the same as influential?

During the inagural Academic Book Week Darwin’s On the Origins of Species was voted by the public as the most influential academic book ever written.

A shortlist of 20 books was compiled, including among others Newton’s Principia, Hawking’s A Brief History of Time, Smith’s The Wealth of Nations and Orwell’s 1984 to name but a few.

In the following post Emily Tee provides a rationale to her voting preferences. Her comments and the original shortlist lead me to ask the following questions:

Does the result of the vote reflect voting preferences based on the fame of a book or author rather than influence of the book?

Should 1984 have been included on the academic shortlist?

Which book would you have voted for and why?

Unfortunately, the vote is now closed but I would have opted for Newton’s Prinicpia. However, I may be biased being a physicist!

Please comment.

 

 

 

 

Humans are about to populate another planet and you could be part of it

fuselab logo

We’re looking for participants for the 2015 Fuselab Go tour, an out-of-this-world experience where you’ll help plan the future of an as yet uninhabited world!

If you’re aged 15–18, this is your chance to learn about innovation and creativity and build the skills, networks and confidence that will help you thrive in a fast moving future.

WHAT IS FUSELAB?

Fuselab is an innovation and creativity bootcamp run by Edinburgh International Science Festival. Now looking to recruit the next group of pioneers, so if you’re aged 15-18 this is your chance to get involved!

Fuselab Go is an exciting new touring version of the original programme which was launched back in July 2013. It has been designed to take a fresh, fast and fun Fuselab learning experience to locations across Scotland in summer 2015.

This is your opportunity to think bigger than ever before on a completely blank canvas, developing out-of-this-world solutions to real world problems.

You’ll discover new approaches to challenges through workshops, skills sessions, talks and games that will encourage you to respond both individually and as a group, seeking out relevant skills among your colleagues and collaborating to design, prototype and test your ideas.

Check out the Fuseab website to discover more about the project –

sciencefestival.co.uk/fuselab

WHAT OUR FIRST PIONEERS THOUGHT ABOUT FUSELAB…

‘I have taken away from Fuselab an even bigger love of the sciences than Ialready had (…I didn’t know that was possible!)’

‘It really pushed me as an engineer and really made me work hard’

‘I loved every minute of it!’

2015 TOUR SCHEDULE AND INFORMATION

Fuselab Go is visiting a host of exciting venues across Scotland in summer 2015. There are 10 sessions in all, each session lasts for two days, happening in 6 cities. Check out the list below to see when the tour is coming to

a location near you:

Edinburgh – 6/7, 8/9 and 11/12 June

Greenock – 15/16 June

Inverness – 18/19 June

Aberdeen – 22/23 and 25/26 June

Dundee – 29/30 June

Glasgow – 4/5 and 6/7 July

You will be expected to make your own travel arrangements to attend each day, but Fuselab is completely free of charge and you will be provided with lunch and refreshments.

HOW TO APPLY

Applications are open now! For your chance to be part of this exciting project, simply read the terms and conditions to ensure you’re eligible to apply and then complete the short application form available online at sciencefestival.co.uk/fuselab

.

You will receive an automated response when we receive your application and successful applicants will be contacted by email by the end of May 2015.

If you have any queries about your application you can contact Fuselab on fuselab@scifest.co.uk but please be aware that due to the high number of applications we are dealing with it may take a few working days for us to respond.

Solar Eclipse 2015

solar eclipse logoras logo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On 20th March 2015, for the first time in 16 years , we are due for a solar eclipse. It will be partial throughout the UK, and the further north you are, the more of the Sun will be in eclipse. The eclipse will start at about 08.30 and end at 10.30. With Leeds an example, you can see what it will look like observed from the Earth.

The Royal Astronomical Society have produced a resource, which can be found here. It contains information on how to safely, and cheaply, observe a solar eclipse. It also explains more about what solar eclipses are, and what you should expect to see.

BBC Stargazing Live programmes have been scheduled to coincide with the eclipse, this year. Running from the 18-20 March, the programme is again hosted by comedian Dara O’Briain and Professor Brian Cox. You can also access resources for running your own star parties from the BBC website.

So what happens if it’s cloudy? Well, it will still get dark, even if you can’t view the Sun, and you can always view a past eclipse online to see what you would be missing.

Topical Science and Partnerships : twilight professional learning events begin Wednesday 11th March

Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days, where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified.

Key aspects for development emerged, which included:

In the primary sector and at the early stages of secondary school, there is generally less emphasis in the key area of Topical Science than on the other four organisers……. In these cases, children and young people do not have enough opportunity to discuss and debate a range of ethical issues.”
To address this aspect the Sciences team hosted a “Topical Science and Partnerships” Glow Meet .

To Watch Again : https://meet.glowscotland.org.uk/p5rd5cx8od8/

Each glow meet is complimented by a series of professional learning twilight sessions.

Please register through: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/TwilightSessions2015

Breakout sessions will be provided by Dynamic Earth, The Royal Society of Chemistry, Glasgow City of Science, Stem Ambassadors and The English Speaking Union.

Education Scotland will also be delivering sessions on Citizen Science, Community Resilience, Food and Science and Social Studies and Science.

 

GLOW MEET EXCLUSIVE! Ask an astronaut – with Commander Chris Hadfield

The previous Commander of the International Space Station delighted, entertained and inspired us with his videos detailing life in space. He showed us how to make a sandwich in space, how he brushed his teeth, and even recorded his own version of a famous David Bowie song, Space Oddity.

On Tuesday March 24th at 2.30pm, Commander Hadfield will be on Glow TV answering pupils’ questions about science, space and the Universe.

What was his most terrifying moment in space? What does flying a rocket feel like? How has he adjusted to life back on Earth?

We will be selecting the best questions and these pupils will have the opportunity to ask questions live directly to Commander Hadfield on the day!

Submit your questions to glow.connect@glowscotland.onmicrosoft.com before 20th March with the title “Ask an astronaut”. Don’t forget to include your pupils’ names, ages and school. To register for the event, click here (Glow log-in required).

Topical Science and Partnerships professional learning twilight events

Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days, where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified.

Key aspects for development emerged, which included:

In the primary sector and at the early stages of secondary school, there is generally less emphasis in the key area of Topical Science than on the other four organisers……. In these cases, children and young people do not have enough opportunity to discuss and debate a range of ethical issues.”

To address this aspect the Sciences team hosted a “Topical Science and Partnerships” Glow Meet on Wednesday 4th March

To watch the meet again : https://meet.glowscotland.org.uk/p5rd5cx8od8/

The glow meet will be once again be complimented by a series of professional learning twilight events.

To register :https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/TwilightSessions2015

Breakout sessions will be provided by Dynamic Earth, The Royal Society of Chemistry, Glasgow City of Science and Stem Ambassadors.

Education Scotland will also be delivering sessions on Citizen Science, Community Resilience, Food and Science and Social Studies and Science.

 

Digital learning in Dumfries and Galloway

Throughout #digilearnscot week (as on  most weeks in schools in Dumfries & Galloway Council), young learners use technology as an integral part of their learning.
 
On Monday and Tuesday, 6 primary schools will be involved in science lessons via video conference with Heather Reid at the Glasgow Science Centre. This is now their third year of working with Heather in this way. The learners are from the following schools;  Castle Douglas, Sanquhar, Dunscore, Penpont, Glenluce and Closeburn.  Here’s a wee flavour from last year’s learning…

Over the last decade, Dumfries and Galloway Council have also developed a programme video conferencing for music lessons. Throughout this week there will be woodwind and brass lessons for schools such as Stranraer Academy, Langholm and Canonbie.
Educators and learners in Dumfries and Galloway are hoping to capture a flavour of this learning for the Digilearn Wiki!

Topical Science and Partnerships

Small - Topical ScienceTo address the aspect of Topical Science the Education Scotland Sciences team are hosting a Glow TV event on Wednesday 4th March at 3.45pm entitled “Topical Science and Partnerships”

Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days, where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified. Key aspects for development emerged, which included: “In the primary sector and at the early stages of secondary school, there is generally less emphasis in the key area of Topical Science than on the other four organisers……. In these cases, children and young people do not have enough opportunity to discuss and debate a range of ethical issues.” Young people are increasingly surrounded by scientific issues in the media and their everyday lives. By considering current issues through topical science, learners increasingly develop their understanding of scientific concepts and their capacity to form informed social, moral and ethical views. They reflect upon and critically evaluate media portrayal of scientific findings. To address this aspect the Sciences team are hosting a Glow Meet entitled “Topical Science and Partnerships” which will be complimented again by a series of professional learning twilight sessions. Contexts for delivering topical science and methods for planning topical science will be addressed.

Register now in Glow TV – Topical Science and Partnerships.

Topical Science and Partnerships Glow Meet – Wednesday 4th March 3.45-4.45pm

Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days, where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified.

Key aspects for development emerged, which included:

In the primary sector and at the early stages of secondary school, there is generally less emphasis in the key area of Topical Science than on the other four organisers……. In these cases, children and young people do not have enough opportunity to discuss and debate a range of ethical issues.”

Young people are increasingly surrounded by scientific issues in the media and their everyday lives. By considering current issues through topical science, learners increasingly develop their understanding of scientific concepts and their capacity to form informed social, moral and ethical views. They reflect upon and critically evaluate media portrayal of scientific findings.

To address this aspect the Sciences team is hosting a “Topical Science and Partnerships” Glow Meet which will be complimented again by a series of professional learning twilight sessions.

Join us on Wednesday 4th March at 3.45 – 4.45 pm in Glow TV to find out more.

Register https://meet.glowscotland.org.uk/topicalscience/event/event_info.html

Register for the twilight session

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/TwilightSessions2015

Sessions will include input from STEM Ambassadors, Royal Society of Chemistry, Citizen Science , Community Resilience, Creative Thinking and the Sciences  and Glasgow City of Science

‘Dams to Darnley’ Education Pack

d2dlogo_big[1]The Dams to Darnley education resource offers an interesting range of outdoor learning activities for all practitioners. Each activity is linked to science experiences and outcomes from early to fourth level. Whilst the resource was produced by the countryside ranger service in East Renfrewshire, it promotes a number of engaging approaches which can be replicated within school grounds or country parks across Scotland.

Countryside rangers can lead activities, however, there are also self-led activites to allow teachers to take ownership within their own settings. The pack also contains helpful appendices with guidance on taking learning outdoors, templates for risk assessments and useful contacts and links.

Second Assessment in the Sciences Glow Meet

Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified.

Key aspects for development emerged, which included primary and early years practitioners requiring guidance and exemplifications for assessment in the sciences.

To address this aspect the sciences team hosted a Glow Meet, Assessment in the Sciences, which was complimented by a series of professional learning twilight sessions across Scotland.

Practitioners have asked that the Meet be run again, therefore join us on Tuesday 10th March 3.35-4.45 pm in Glow TV.

Participants should be familiar with the Assessing Progress and Achievement Overarching Paper.

We will also be using a highlighted Assessing Progress and Achievement in the Sciences curriculum paper, Sciences Progression Framework and an Annotated Exemplification which can be downloaded through the blog link upon registration for the Glow Meet.

To register https://meet.glowscotland.org.uk/assessscience2/event/event_info.html

 

 

Topical science and partnerships

BF2A9145Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days, where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified.

Key aspects for development emerged, which included:

In the primary sector and at the early stages of secondary school, there is generally less emphasis in the key area of Topical Science than on the other four organisers……. In these cases, children and young people do not have enough opportunity to discuss and debate a range of ethical issues.”

Young people are increasingly surrounded by scientific issues in the media and their everyday lives. By considering current issues through topical science, learners increasingly develop their understanding of scientific concepts and their capacity to form informed social, moral and ethical views. They reflect upon and critically evaluate media portrayal of scientific findings.

To address this aspect the Sciences team are hosting a Glow Meet entitled “Topical Science and Partnerships” which will be complimented again by a series of professional learning twilight sessions.

Contexts for delivering topical science and methods for planning topical science will be addressed.

Join us on Tuesday 4th March at 3.45 – 4.45 pm in Glow TV to find out more.

Register now to take part.

https://meet.glowscotland.org.uk/topicalscience/event/event_info.html

 

Generation Science 2015 Tour Launches Across Scotland!

gen scienceGeneration Science (GS) – the largest science education outreach programme in the UK – is once again hitting the road as its 2015 tour gets under way, with science shows and workshops visiting Primary Schools the length and breadth of Scotland.

This Generation Science tour is set to be one of the biggest ever, with visits to all 32 of Scotland’s Local Authority areas scheduled, travelling from the Borders right up to Shetland. The 2015 tour also sees the addition of two brand new workshops to the GS stable, Fuel Hunters and Lego Mindstorms Advanced.

In Fuel Hunters pupils take on the role of exploratory engineers as they learn about geology, where fossils come from, and how oil and gas are formed over millions of years. They then form a team to build their very own 6ft oil rig platform – it’s exploration on a brand new level!

Lego Mindstorms Advanced sees pupils join ‘Mission Control’ to learn about the amazing real-life robots currently operating in space, before programming their own robots on a rescue mission to another planet, as we aim to inspire the computer scientists of our future.

Each year Generation Science tours all around Scotland from February until May, reaching around 60,000 children aged 5 – 12 years all over the country, where teams of skilled science communicators will bring science and technology to life across a range of subjects through 17 shows and workshops.

Visits are designed specifically to support and supplement the Curriculum for Excellence and introduce children to ideas in science and technology in a fun and immersive way. The programme also aims to inspire tomorrow’s scientists, by alerting young girls and boys to the possibilities of a career in science and technology.

For more information about the programme visit generationscience.co.uk.

 

New Zooniverse project in the Serengeti

untitledScientists in the Serengeti need your help to classify all the different animals caught in millions of camera trap images.

Zooniverse have just launched season 8 of Snapshot Serengeti, and you can now classify hundreds of thousands of amazing new images from the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. In addition there are some brand new features in the project, such as a checkbox for images with fire in them, and six new species to identify! They have also updated the site to make it easier to use on your tablet or smartphone.

An interesting way of engaging learners in conservation and environmental issues.

http://www.snapshotserengeti.org/

 

 

Last chance to enter the Scottish Education Awards 2015

SEA launchWe’ve received a fantastic number of entries for the Scottish Education Awards but times running out now. The awards showcase and celebrate the hard work and dedication across Scottish education.

To be in with a chance of winning make sure you’re entries are in before midday on 16 February.

A full list of categories and details on how to enter are on the Scottish Education Awards website. Get you’re entry in now and good luck.

New Grant Scheme for Biology Events in Scotland

The Society of Biology is pleased to announce the first round of our Regional Grant Scheme in Scotland

Individual biologists or biology-related organisations can apply for funding to run a biology public engagement or schools event or activity in Scotland.
The grant scheme is funded by the Scottish Government and offers grants of up to £200 for small events and up to £500 for larger events.

Events can take place between May and December 2015 and priority will be given to events in under-served areas of Scotland.
Application forms are submitted by email and the deadline is Monday 16th March 2015.
Full details and application forms are available at www.societyofbiology.org/RGS-Scotland

For questions about the grant scheme, please contact

Dr Jane Magill
Regional Co-ordinator (Scotland and Northern England)
Society of Biology
janemagill@societyofbiology.org
Mobile: 07885 914212

STEM and Food for Thought: Education Fund Phase 3

Participating in the Food for Thought project provides opportunity to raise awareness of STEM careers in the food and drink industry, one of our key economic growth sectors.

Recent figures estimate that 170,000 employees with STEM skills are required by 2020.

Apply now and take STEM forward in your establishment.

Applications can now be made to the Food for Thought: Education Fund Phase 3. The fund aims to support practitioners to build their confidence and capacity and to improve learning and teaching within food education in Curriculum for Excellence. Awards of up to £3000 per project are available. Apply now.

This year we are looking for schools to plan food education projects that:

  • aim to improve outcomes for learners in ways which seek to eliminate the inequity that currently exists amongst learners from different backgrounds and from particular vulnerable groups
  • plan to focus on Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce by improving work experience, career advice and careers education. This is why we are asking you to work with local businesses as by working more closely with employers we can all aim to ensure our work is taking account of their views and needs to developing the workforce of tomorrow.
  • provide the opportunity for staff to develop their knowledge and skills around food education
  • involve progressive learning and teaching in delivering and embedding food education
  • build respect around food education into the ethos of the school (i.e. not one off events)

Proposals must be submitted by Sunday 29 March 2015. You will receive a confirmation email once your application has been submitted.

Read also our news release: Food for Thought Education Fund serves up another course of funding.

 

Kings College University : Aspires Project 2014

aspires imageMany governments and organisations are concerned that not enough young people are choosing to study Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) after the age of 16.

There is also widespread concern that the profile of those who do go on to study STEM subjects and pursue STEM careers is too narrow, with women, working-class and some minority ethnic groups remaining under-represented, especially in the physical sciences and engineering.

Particular STEM fields are predicting or already experiencing significant STEM skills gaps that may impact negatively on the economy. There is also a pressing need to improve the spread of scientific literacy across all societal groups.

The ASPIRES study sought to shed new light on our understanding of how young people’s aspirations develop over this 10-14 age period, exploring in particular what influences the likelihood of a young person aspiring to a science-related career.

The project is a five-year study funded by the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as part of its Targeted Initiative on Science and Mathematics Education (TISME).

In addition to researching influences on students’ aspirations, the project also worked with a small group of teachers to develop approaches for integrating STEM careers information into science lessons.

Access the report through http://bit.ly/1fkDdDy

Scottish Learning Festival 2015 – Learning for Sustainability

SLF_2015logoThe Scottish Learning Festival (SLF) 2015 will address the theme of raising attainment and achievement for all, with a focus on maximising educational outcomes through:

* local partnerships and collaboration – to share approaches that lead to better outcomes

* self-evaluation – to ensure creative and innovative approaches to sustained improvement

* work-related learning – to improve transitions into sustainable, productive employment.

Is your establishment delivering Learning for Sustainability (LfS) that you would like to showcase? Are you able to share your approaches to promoting local partnerships and collaboration? Would you be willing to help others make the connections between the different aspects of LfS; including global citizenship, sustainable development education, outdoor learning, international education, children’s rights and play?

If the answer to any (or all) of these questions is “Yes”, we would love to hear from you. Please consider submitting your seminar proposal by Friday 27th February 2015.

A nucleus of talent

First Minister meets Higgs Prize for Physics winners.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced the newest winners of the Higgs Prize for Physics, congratulating them on their success.

The prize is named after Scottish-based Nobel Physics Prize winner Professor Peter Higgs, whose work in the field has had a significant impact on modern day particle physics, and rewards pupils who show a particular aptitude for the subject.

Ms Sturgeon and Education Secretary Angela Constance met Professor Higgs himself and the four winners in the First Minister’s office on Thursday 29th January.

The winners are:

• Eilidh Birse – a former pupil at Boclair Academy in Bearsden who is now studying medicine at the University of St Andrews
• Julie Lynch – a former pupil at St Ninian’s High School in Giffnock who is now studying Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Glasgow and is continuing to take Physics as a third subject
• Stuart McGibbon – a fellow former pupil at St Ninian’s High School in Giffnock, now currently studying Physics at the University of Glasgow
• Raheem Beg – a former pupil at Perth High School who is currently studying mathematics at the University of Dundee

As part of the Scottish Government funded prize, they will travel to the internationally renowned CERN research facility in Switzerland in July to attend lectures and seminars on physics as part of the summer school programme, as well as talking to Scottish researchers about their work at the facility and their careers in physics.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:

“Scotland has a wonderful history of scientific discovery and it’s encouraging to see that tradition continue through today’s pupils and students who continue to be passionate and excited to take on the scientific challenges that remain unexplained.

“Science is hugely important to Scotland in the modern era and the achievements of Professor Higgs – a man whose work is internationally renowned – are of course inspiring for any budding scientist. This year, the International Year of Light, also celebrates the incredible legacy of another Scottish physicist, James Clerk Maxwell, whose theories underpin the technology at the heart of almost all communications equipment we take for granted today.

“We are absolutely determined to support pupils to excel and remove any barriers that might prevent them from realising their full potential. This prize is the perfect example of hard work opening up life-changing opportunities. Today’s four winners Eilidh, Julie, Stuart and Raheem now have the opportunity to go to the fantastic CERN research facility in Switzerland to listen and learn from some of the brightest minds of our generation. We are offering them the chance to be the very best they can be – the vast knowledge and experience they will have access to is an opportunity that many across the world will envy.

“I’m therefore delighted to award a prize in Professor Higg’s name to these exceptionally hard working and talented youngsters.”

Professor Higgs said:

“Everyone in life has people that they admire and strive to be like – my own inspiration was Paul Dirac, a man who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1933 – and I’m honoured that an award in my name is used as inspiration to the younger generation of physicists.

“I congratulate Eilidh, Julie, Stuart and Raheem on winning this prize and I am sure they will have an amazing time at CERN where they will learn from the very best. I hope these four promising young talents go on to became esteemed in their own right.”

Background

Pictures of the First Minister meeting Professor Higgs and the prize winners will be available here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/firstministerofscotland

The prize is awarded on merit, to the highest performing male and female Advanced Higher Physics candidates from a publicly-funded school.

Glow 365 Primary Science Site

The new Primary Science Glow 365 site continues to develop.

Take a look at our blog page which is easily accessible and provides up to date relevant information.

Our latest blogs include how to participate in British Science Week and how to nominate an

establishment for the new STEM Scottish Education Award 2015

We also have a variety of resources and power points to support learning and teaching in the sciences.

To access the site http://bit.ly/glowsciences

#primaryscience

New STEM Scottish Education Award 2015

The Scottish Education Awards celebrate the hard work and success which takes place in Scottish education. They recognise the achievements of people who dedicate their lives to children and young people and showcase the valuable work and innovation in Scottish classrooms

This year a new award category for STEM, Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics, has been introduced.

This category recognises establishments who are helping children and young people develop STEM skills and apply these across the four contexts for learning – curriculum, inter-disciplinary learning, ethos and life of the school and opportunities for personal achievement.

Nominations should be able to evidence the following questions and describe the impact on learners, the school and wider community:

  • In what ways do learners in your establishment demonstrate successful application of STEM skills?
  • In what ways are learners using STEM to develop skills for learning, life and work?
  • In what ways do you work with partners/parents/wider community to support STEM?

Nominations for this year’s awards are now open.

Nominations close 12pm on Monday 16 February 2015.

#primaryscience

“What should I be?” – Careers in the Food and Drinks Industry

Herald Mag - food industryEducation Scotland and partners link up with The Herald and Evening Times

The third issue in a series of publications for young people called ‘What could I be?’ has been produced by The Herald and Evening Times newspapers, together with Education Scotland, the Scottish Government, Skills Development Scotland and the Scottish Qualifications Authority. Parents, carers and teachers will also find this innovative series of publications about careers helpful. This edition looks specifically at career ideas in the food and drink industry.

Access the Magazine here

Collect data about the environment and win £1000!

Do you have an environmental issue in your local area? Can you collect data about the issue?

Telerik_Web_UI_WebResource
Can you think of a solution to the problem?
Collect data about an environmental issue in your local area, propose a solution and submit your ideas and you could win £1000 for your school.
Ideas, resources and last years entries can be found here.

March 30th closing date

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ComPound Interest – Chemistry Resources

ComPound Interest

 

Looking for a weekly summary of both new chemistry research and studies that have been in the news? ComPound Interest is a blog by Andy Brunning, a chemistry teacher in the UK, creating graphics looking at the chemistry and chemical reactions we come across on a day-to-day basis. This week’s summary features a nanoparticle drug that prevents the spread of cancer in mice, the discovery of polymeric organic material on comet 67-P, and more.

The Infographics he creates can be used as corridor and classroom displays and cover Elements, Food chemistry, Colour chemistry, Organic Chemistry and many more. You can subscribe to receive new content posted on the site automatically via email.

Submit your seminar proposals for SLF 2015

SLF_logo_URLSLF 2015 takes place on Wednesday 23 and Thursday 24 September in Glasgow.

SLF provides high quality continuing professional learning and is a rendezvous for educational professionals both nationally and internationally, providing a unique platform to engage with a diverse range of experts, colleagues and suppliers.

We are now accepting seminar proposals for the 2015 conference programme which will feature around 100 seminars over the 2 days.

Is there a project you have been working on that could be showcased? Or perhaps you are aware of establishments that demonstrate good practice? We would encourage you to share this information with your colleagues and networks and submit relevant proposals for consideration.

The theme for SLF 2015: Raising attainment and achievement for all, with a focus on maximising educational outcomes through:

• local partnerships and collaboration – to share approaches that lead to better outcomes
• self-evaluation – to ensure creative and innovative approaches to sustained improvement
• work-related learning – to improve transitions into sustainable, productive employment.

Full details of the theme are available on the SLF website.

If you would like to submit a proposal for consideration please do so before Friday 27 February. Proposals received after this date will not be considered for inclusion in the conference programme. All proposals must be submitted online.

There is a robust review, evaluation and scoring system in place to help ensure that all submissions are treated equally therefore it is essential that all requests to participate go through the submission process and adhere to the timescales.

Last year we received in excess of 300 proposals which allowed Education Scotland to deliver a relevant and balanced conference programme covering all key areas of education. The 2015 conference programme and registration will be launched in May and will feature the sessions that have been submitted and selected for inclusion.

We look forward to receiving your proposals and hope you will contribute to SLF 2015 to help continue to deliver Scotland’s largest annual national education event. If you would like any further information about SLF 2015 please contact the SLF team.

Online learning spaces – the Learning Experience space

This is the second post in a series which describes some of our work on ‘content-free’ templates for educators and learners to use in CfE  learning.

learnex_logo3This space is on Glow O365, so it is best to log into Glow (eg on the Learning Spaces Community) before you explore the links below

What’s the thinking behind the Learning Experience space?

This space helps learners and educators co-create a learning experience starting from a bundle of Experiences and Outcomes.

It follows closely the approached offered by the NAR flowchart. In fact, there is a behind the scenes planner which may reduce some of the workload associated with some other methods of planning learning.

Nar flowchart

​​What does it do?

For the learner, they can be involved in devising learning intentions and success criteria, talking about their learning, showcasing learning and getting support when needed.

For the teacher, it makes the planning and delivery of a BGE learning experience a wee bit easier.

How do I get it?

The Learning Space template is on Glow O365 and is available to any member of staff from their school site. See How to create a Learning Experience Space for more details

Summary of support available

See also Online learning spaces – the Class Space

INSPIRE AND MOTIVATE PUPILS WITH BIOLOGY

SoBbbsrclottery

 

 

The Society of Biology launched a project (June 2014 – March 2015) named “Biology: Changing the World”, funded by BBSRC and the National Lottery to promote and celebrate the lives and contribution of famous biologists to the way we live now.

The project utilises heritage plaques present on buildings nationwide to highlight famous biologists in local areas. A tablet based App (freely downloaded from App’s store) has been developed which locates plaques closest to the user giving information about the scientist, such as their life stories and their contribution to biology. Interviews with contemporary biologists are also included.

SoB infoFor schools, and in particular for children aged 7-10 years, there is a teachers booklet and poster available (free of cost) to explain the project with suggestions for workshops and lessons.

More details can be found on the website below.

http://biologyheritage.societyofbiology.org/bcw-schools

 

British Science Week 13 – 22 March 2015

BSW 2015British Science Week (BSW, formerly National Science & Engineering Week (NSEW)) is a ten-day programme of science, technology, engineering and maths events and activities across the UK aimed at people of all ages.
Anyone can organise an event or activity, and the British Science Association helps organisers plan by providing free activity and support resources. It welcomes and supports any type of organiser, from schools to community groups and from parents to large organisations. The resulting programme of events is a hugely varied and eclectic mix.
Get lots of information about how to plan your events for British Science Week and find events you can attend near you.

For further information and details regarding registration click on the link below:
http://britishscienceweek.org/

Seashell citizen science survey

Scottish Seashell Survey

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Keep Scotland Beautiful is encouraging all beach visitors this summer to participate in the first citizen science Scottish Seashell Survey.  A fun way to learn about the natural world while helping to collect useful information about the creatures that live around our coasts.

Scotland’s Finest Woods Awards

Now open for applications!

Scotland’s Finest Woods (SFW) and the Outdoor & Woodland Learning Scotland (OWLS) (formerly Forest Education Initiative Scotland) have once again teamed up to run an annual Schools Award in Scotland.

The Award is to encourage and reward schools that increase young people’s understanding and appreciation of the environmental, social and economic potential of trees, woodlands and forests and of the link between trees and everyday wood-based products.

Prize money and prestige to be won!  Closing date for entry – 31st March 2015

For further information click on this link – www.sfwa.co.uk/

Learning for Sustainability award

The countdown is on for nominations to the Scottish Education Awards and your school could be the inaugural winners of the newly established Learning for Sustainability award. This award replaces the separate categories for global citizenship and sustainable schools. It aims to recognise the connections schools and centres have made between the different aspects of learning for sustainability (sustainable development education, international education, education for citizenship, global citizenship, outdoor learning, children’s rights and play) and how they have successfully implemented them across their schools and wider communities.
See our Conversations about learning for sustainability report for case studies of schools and centres that have demonstrated a commitment to learning for sustainability.
The full list of award categories is online, and we would encourage teachers, schools and local authorities to consider nominations before the deadline on Monday 16th February 2015.
Reminder – sign up to our new learning for sustainability ebulletin to keep up to date with the best news about new resources, professional learning and events.

Our Environment Competition now open for submissions.

Our Environment competition is now open for entry submission!
They want you to:
• find an environmental problem that you want to fix (or a potential problem you want to prevent);
• describe the problem;
• work out what you want to change, how that could make us healthier and happier; and
• work out how you are going to make it happen.
They are looking for ideas which:
• are ambitious & inspiring;
• are of high quality and well presented;
• engage with other members of your school or community; and
• have a legacy potential.
There is a £1000 prize for the best group entry from all the age categories, and a £100 prize for the best individual entry.
Find out more information on Scotland’s Environment Web.
Or on the Our Environment homepage to view other entries and get inspired!

ROYAL INSTITUTION GRANT SCHEME FOR ENRICHING STEM TEACHING

The Ri and the Causeway Foundation are offering UK schools grants of up to £500 to host a show, talk, workshop, debate, challenge or other STEM activity to supplement their students’ classroom activities.

Grants of up to £500 are being offered to eligible state-funded schools, academies and FE colleges in the UK to take part in an Enrichment and Enhancement (E&E) STEM activity from the STEM Directories before July 2015. This is an exciting opportunity for students to take part in a mathematics activity and help integrate mathematics enrichment in school practice.

The Scheme is now open and the deadline for applications is 9th February 2015 at 5pm.

For more information and to apply, visit the STEM Directories website. Priority will be given to schools meeting certain criteria; please see the grant terms for more details.

If you have any questions relating to the grant scheme or the STEM Directories, please contact info@stemdirectories.org.uk.

Scottish Education STEM Award 2015

The Scottish Education Awards celebrate the hard work and success which takes place in Scottish education. They recognise the achievements of people who dedicate their lives to children and young people and showcase the valuable work and innovation in Scottish classrooms

This year a new award category for STEM, Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics, has been introduced.
This category recognises establishments who are helping children and young people develop STEM skills and apply these across the four contexts for learning – curriculum, inter-disciplinary learning, ethos and life of the school and opportunities for personal achievement.

Nominations should be able to evidence the following questions and describe the impact on learners, the school and wider community:
• In what ways do learners in your establishment demonstrate successful application of STEM skills?
• In what ways are learners using STEM to develop skills for learning, life and work?
• In what ways do you work with partners/parents/wider community to support STEM?

Nominations for this year’s awards are now open.

Nominations close 12pm on Monday 16 February 2015.
#primaryscience

Assessment in the Sciences

Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified.

Key aspects for development emerged, which included primary and early years practitioners requiring guidance and exemplifications for assessment in the sciences.

To address this aspect the sciences team will be hosting the second of four Glow Meets, complimented again by a series of professional learning twilight sessions.

The Education Scotland assessment support documentation will be explored, using exemplifications from the NAR and addressing particular science Significant Aspects of Learning.

Join us on Tuesday 13th January at 4pm in Glow TV to find out more. Register now to take part – Assessment in the Sciences

Junior Saltire Awards Competition 2015

Join us in Glow TV on Tuesday 13th January at 11am to find out more about this year’s Junior Saltire Awards. This engaging, hands-on, topical competition sets the challenge of designing, building and testing a simple floating Wave Energy Converter.

We will be live at the FloWave Ocean Energy Research Facility which is the world’s most sophisticated ocean simulator. The first of its kind in the world, the circular FloWave test tank combines complex wide-area multidirectional wave simulation with fast tidal flows.

You will have an opportunity to find out more about it from the experts and to ask your own questions!

Register today to take part – Junior Saltire Awards Competition 2015

For all enquiries about the Junior Saltire, please contact Melanie Riddell, melanie.riddell@scdi.org.uk

Project STEM, Book of Insights 2014

The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) is the Government department for economic growth.
It works with further and higher education providers to give students the skills they need to compete in a global employment market and supports the UK’s science and research industry, which is important to economic growth.

The organisation has produced Project STEM, Book of Insights 2014 which details young people’s attitudes, beliefs, motivations and behaviours that affect their decisions on subject choice and career paths to add depth to the current understanding of how they perceive STEM careers.

The book brings together four phases of research activity with young people; qualitative, social listening, co-creation and quantitative research activities that ran between February and March 2014.
To complement the qualitative research, the researchers listened to young people’s social media conversations to understand their sentiment towards STEM careers and subjects.

To access the research document Project STEM, Book of Insights 2014

Assessment in Science, Glow Meet and Professional Learning Twilight Sessions

Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified.

Key aspects for development emerged, which included primary and early years practitioners requiring guidance on and exemplifications for assessment in the sciences.

To address this aspect the sciences team will be hosting the second of three Glow Meets, complimented again by a series of professional learning twilight sessions.

The Education Scotland assessment support documentation will be explored, using exemplifications from the NAR, addressing particular science Significant Aspects of Learning.

The second Glow meet Assessment in the Sciences will take place on Tuesday 13th January 3.45-4.30pm

To register: https://meet.glowscotland.org.uk/e7wzsiv2uvs/event/event_info.html

Dates, times and venues for the complimentary twilight sessions to date are:

Dundee, Education Scotland Endeavour House, Monday 26th January 4-6pm

Dumfries, Lochside Education Centre, 27th January 4-6pm

Inverness, Mercure Hotel, Wednesday 28th January 4-6pm

Aberdeen, Satrosphere Science Centre, Thursday 29th January 4-6pm

Edinburgh, Dynamic Earth, Monday 2nd February 4-6pm

Glasgow , St Andrew’s Secondary, Thursday 5th February 4-6pm

Please sign up through https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/twilightsessions

Revisit the first Glow meet Supporting Primary & Early Years Science

Scottish Learning Festival 2015 – save the dates

We’re delighted to announce that SLF 2015 will take place on Wednesday 23 and Thursday 24 September in the SECC, Glasgow. SLF is the largest education event in Scotland and will focus on raising achievement and attainment. Those interested in presenting a seminar at the festival can submit a proposal in January, when further information will be available on the SLF website.

Registration for the SLF will open in May, look out for more information over the coming months and save the dates in your diary now.

We are also working with a range of partners to host a series of SLF Extra events in 2015. On 17 February, Aberdeen City Council in partnership with Education Scotland, Aberdeenshire Council and Moray Council will host the Aberdeen Learning Festival in the AECC. The festival will include keynotes, workshop and an exhibition. More information about the event and how to register will be available in January.

On 27 February Children in Scotland, in partnership with Education Scotland, are hosting the first in a series of six free events for all those involved in education. The morning session will focus on pupil engagement and participation and the afternoon session will look at parental engagement. This first event takes place in Melrose and more information is available on the Children in Scotland website.

More SLF Extra events will be taking place in 2015, visit the SLF website for details.

Assessment in the Sciences Glow Meet and Professional Learning Twilight Sessions

Following the publication of its 3-18 Curriculum Impact Report for Sciences in September 2012, Education Scotland organised a series of conversation days where priorities for action to secure improvements in science education nationally were identified.

Key aspects for development emerged, which included primary and early years practitioners requiring guidance on and exemplifications for assessment in the sciences.

To address this aspect the sciences team will be hosting the second of three Glow Meets, complimented again by a series of professional learning twilight sessions.

The Education Scotland assessment support documentation will be explored, using exemplifications from the NAR, addressing particular science Significant Aspects of Learning.

The second Glow meet Assessment in the Sciences will take place on Tuesday 13th January 3.45-4.30pm

To register: https://meet.glowscotland.org.uk/e7wzsiv2uvs/event/event_info.html

Dates, times and venues for the complimentary twilight sessions to date are:

Dundee, Education Scotland Endeavour House, Monday 26th January 4-6pm

Inverness, Mercure Hotel, Wednesday 28th January  4-6pm                            

Aberdeen, Satrosphere Science Centre, Thursday 29th January 4-6pm

Edinburgh, Dynamic Earth, Monday 2nd February 4-6pm

Glasgow , St Andrew’s Secondary, Thursday 5th February 4-6pm

Dumfries and Borders (tbc)

Please sign up through https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/twilightsessions

Revisit the first Glow meet Supporting Primary & Early Years Science

K’Nex Cluster Challenge 2015

Glasgow Science Festival is pleased to announce the K’Nex Cluster Challenge for 2015. This annual competition is a chance for primary 5 and 6 pupils to apply their creativity and construction skills to various engineering based challenges, competing at three levels; classroom, cluster and area to become their area champion.

The Cluster Challenge involves primary schools working together with their cluster secondary school through each level of the competition. Pupils will work in teams of two to demonstrate their imagination, creativity and ingenuity by designing and making a model, using K’Nex, which solves a set engineering based challenge.
 
Each level has different fun challenges set by Glasgow Science Festival with judging criteria including the following categories: communication, design, problem solving and visual appeal. The overall winning team at each level will compete in the next level of the competition until a winning team for each area in the west of Scotland is found.
 
Full details of the competition and how your cluster can get involved can be found on the Glasgow Science Festival website.
 
Applications must be made by Friday 30th January 2015.
 
 
 

Twig on Glow: Animal Kingdom

Twig on Glow’s new Biology module, Animal Kingdom, has over 60 stunning films for you and your learners to explore.

 Mapped to Biodiversity and Interdependence within Curriculum for Excellence, these captivating short films give learners an insight into the lives of some of the planet’s most unusual and exciting species.

  • Find out how reptiles evolved from early amphibians, and the adaptations that allowed them to thrive on dry land.
  • ​Watch an introduction to the duck-billed platypus – one of the world’s few egg-laying mammals. Find out what it looks like, where it lives, and what it eats.
  •  Find out more about the poison arrow frog which lays its eggs on the ground and must climb high into the rainforest canopy to transport its young to a watery nursery.

Teachers why not try the Weird and Wonderful Animal Kingdom Quiz with your class? Submit your class’s answers via the online form and you could win £100 of Amazon vouchers for your school!

 All you require is your glow log in   https://www.twigonglow.com/

#primaryscience

Junior Saltire Competition 2015 – Marine Energy Challenge

Young Engineers and Science Clubs Scotland encourage you to enter the Junior Saltire Competition 2015 Marine Energy Challenge.

Finalists will be invited to test their devices at FloWave’s Ocean Energy Research Facility,  which is the world’s most sophisticated ocean simulator.  

Prizes of up to £750 and unique Saltire medals are up for grabs!  

Read more in our newsletter http://eepurl.com/-Iaif

#primaryscience

Hermitage Primary School, Technology Challenge 2014

Primary 7 pupils at Hermitage Primary School, Helensburgh took part in their Technology Challenge presentation evening on Thursday 4th December, which brought their interdisciplinary topic to a close.

The project incorporated all STEM subjects enabling learners to develop their knowledge and understanding of the concepts and skills in Technologies, Maths, Language and Science. This also included aspects of PSD.

The Technology Challenge required pupils to work in cooperative groups, to plan and design a working electrical vehicle which was supported by a good business plan. Their progress was recorded in the form of a booklet and i-pad presentation. 

Vehicles had to move forwards, backwards and have working lights and were to be created within a given budget.  In addition, pupils were granted an additional £10 by the Head Teacher in order to add extra technology such as LED lights, pulley operated doors, a working lift and even a moving dragon’s head! 

Following weeks of hard work the 10 teams of 6 pupils spoke to a panel of 3 judges and an audience of invited guests.

Each team gave a presentation about their vehicle detailing their experiences of working as a team, planning and designing, working to a budget and what they felt they had achieved.

The judging panel were very impressed with the standard of work and the efforts of every team member and eventually selected  U-PoP as the winning team. 

U-Pop created a mobile recording studio which included a working recording and playback sound module. 

The delighted team members were Max Kemp, Hamish Paterson, Annika Seitz, Shannon Beaton, Esther Lopez and Rory Frew.

#primaryscience

Scottish Education STEM Award 2015

The Scottish Education Awards celebrate the hard work and success which takes place in Scottish education. They recognise the achievements of people who dedicate their lives to children and young people and showcase the valuable work and innovation in Scottish classrooms.

This year a new award category for STEM, Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics, has been introduced. 

This category recognises establishments who are helping children and young people develop STEM skills and apply these across the four contexts for learning – curriculum, inter-disciplinary learning, ethos and life of the school and opportunities for personal achievement.

Nominations should be able to evidence the following questions and describe the impact on learners, the school and wider community:

  •  In what ways do learners in your establishment demonstrate successful application of STEM skills?
  • In what ways are learners using STEM to develop skills for learning, life and work? 
  • In what ways do you work with partners/parents/wider community to support STEM?

 Nominations for this year’s awards are now open.

Nominations close 12pm on Monday 16 February 2015.

#primaryscience

Scottish Education Awards 2015 – now open for nominations

Nominations for the Scottish Education Awards 2015 awards are now open. Celebrating the hard work and success in Scottish education, the awards recognise the achievements of people who dedicate their lives to children and young people.

There are 17 awards available across a range of categories covering all areas of education. New awards for this year include learning for sustainability, making languages come alive and transforming lives through partnerships.

If you know of a school or teacher that deserves to be recognised for their hard work visit the Scottish Education Awards website for more information and to submit a nomination.

Nominations must be submitted by Monday 16 February 2015, good luck.

Instellar – CfE Higher Physics Resources

Instellar – CfE Higher Physics Resources

An Education pack has been created by the makers of Interstellar that helps teachers with some of the topics covered in the film. In discussion with Professor Martin Hendry from Glasgow University it became clear that this deals directly with some core topics of the new revised Physics Higher.

This guide to be available on the Glasgow Science Centre website at: http://www.glasgowsciencecentre.org/online/astronomy-activities.html. Or from the Sciences Glow site in the Higher Our Dynamic Universe folder.
Additionally Martin has written a great blog post about the film here: http://www.glasgowsciencecentre.org/science/the-science-of-interstellar.html

Engaging with Scottish schools to promote STEM

Engaging with Scottish schools to promote STEM
10am to 3:30pm, 2nd February 2015
Venue: Deans Community High School, Livingston

The Commission for Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce states in its report that ‘a focus on sciences, technologies, engineering and mathematics (STEM) should sit at the heart of the development of Scotland’s young workforce’ and calls for long-term partnerships to be established between schools, colleges and employers to bring about significant change.
Similarly, higher education institutions and research groups are looking for ways to engage effectively with school communities to encourage learners to develop STEM skills and pursue further study in these areas.
There are many activities taking place nationally and schools are already engaging with a variety of partner organisations and institutions to enhance the learning and teaching of STEM within Curriculum for Excellence and to develop the employability skills of learners. However, more needs to be done to coordinate efforts and scale up successful approaches to bring about the transformative change that is required.
The purpose of this event is to:
• Share interesting and thought-provoking models of school partnerships with industry, higher education and colleges
• Create a forum for discussion regarding effective partnership working with schools to support learning and teaching in STEM areas
• Outline the national actions that are being developed by national bodies to address the recommendations from the Commission for Developing Scotland’s Young Workforce.
Audience: This event is aimed at key decision makers or a nominated substitute (persons with interest in STEM School engagement) in local authorities, professional bodies, colleges, higher education, research and industry.
Programme: The event will include a stimulating mix of keynote presentations, workshops and discussion. Further details regarding speakers and workshops will be provided in due course.
To register: This is a free event. Please email STS@SSERC.org.uk to book a place. It is advisable to book early as places are limited. When booking, please remember to send details of any special dietary or access requirements.
For further information please contact Scott Bryce at scott.bryce@sserc.org.uk.

Supporting Outdoor Learning in Secondary Schools – Speyside High School, 15th November 2015

On Saturday 15th November the second of our ‘Supporting Outdoor Learning in Secondary Schools’ events took place at Speyside High School in Aberlour. The day began with an opening presentation from Nigel Engstrand, Head Teacher, Speyside High School who shared his thoughts on the relevance and importance of learning outdoors and discussed the commitment that Speyside High School has made to outdoor learning.

Throughout the day 12 workshops ran offering participants a variety of practical ideas on how to use outdoor learning approaches across the curriculum. Examples included using the outdoors to develop literacy skills, outdoor learning through physical education and physical activity, creativity in the outdoors, taking science outdoors and progression in outdoor learning from S1-S6. Many workshops also highlighted how partnership working had also helped enrich outdoor learning experiences. Details of all the workshops which took place can also be downloaded here: Workshops – Detailed descriptors

Representatives from 11 partner agencies also took part in the market place providing a wealth of information on further resources available to support outdoor learning.

But the undoubtable highlight of the day was the captivating keynote speech delivered by S4 Speyside High School pupil Zeki Basan. Zeki, a junior ‘Ray Mears’, provided a fascinating talk on bush craft (or the term he has coined ‘Bushology’) in which he shared his vast knowledge of the medicinal properties and practical uses of the wild plants and trees which exist in the local Speyside countryside. Most inspiring was Zeki’s candid account of how a meeting with Ray Mears together with his own passion for the natural world and thirst to learn more about it helped him to overcome his own personal barrier to learning.

Many thanks also to the other Speyside High School pupils Lee Tarling, Annemiek Daggert, Connel Laing and Elliot Gould who kindly gave up their Saturday to help meet and greet the participants and to share their experiences of outdoor learning at Speyside High School.

Feedback from the event has been very positive with many participants already making use of the contacts, resources and ideas they gained from the day:

“It was good meeting such positive teachers and outdoor learning providers. Seeing a school being successful in incorporating OL in the curriculum and not making it an add on.”

“Having young people involved and sharing their passion was the most engaging part of it.”

“I have already discussed using the local farming community with a geography colleague who wasn’t sure where to start.”

“I have an increased awareness of the value of outdoor learning within school and will work with others to improve, increase, support good practice.”

Participants have also had the opportunity to put forward suggestions for future outdoor learning events which will of great use in our planning.

Further information on this event including presentations and materials from the workshops and links to all of the partner organisations that took part can be found on the new Glow Outdoor Learning Community which can be accessed via: http://bit.ly/1umiCug. From here click on the tile ‘Previous events’ to access the sites for the Supporting Outdoor Learning in Secondary Schools events.

Many thanks to staff from Moray Council, Speyside High School, Banchory Academy, Kemnay Academy, Grantown Grammar School, Royal Highland Education Trust (RHET), The National Trust for Scotland, Horseback UK, Cairngorms National Park Authority, The John Muir Award, Field Studies Council, OPAL, Grounds for Learning, The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, Adventure Aberdeen, Classroom Outdoors, The Outward Bound Trust, Abernethy and Angus Education Service.

Millport: Primary Fieldwork Weekend

38 primary teachers from 8 different local authorities landed on the Isle of Cumbrae between the 14-16th November for a fun packed weekend of Outdoor Learning. The Social Studies fieldwork skills CLPL was held at the Field Studies Council centre in Millport. The course was fully funded by Education Scotland and organised in conjunction with Scottish FSC manager, Daniel Moncrieff, and his team.

FSC Scotland delivers Primary, Environmental, Biology, Adventurous Activity and Geography courses for over 5000 students a year. The course built on this expertise and introduced participants to a range of different fieldwork activities which can be used with primary school students. The course was aimed at primary teachers and educators who wanted to further develop their skills to support and lead outdoor learning.

On Saturday, the course focused on Biodiversity and school grounds activities. Engaging activities to illustrate geographical processes included Kung Fu, Geosquishing and Sensory Mapping.

A trip to the Rocky Shore included a competitive scavenge for seal life, making Rocky Shore Real Estate adverts, using string quadrats to compare different areas of plants, and using found objects to create environmental beach art.

The afternoon consisted of fun interactive games helping to explain food chains and food webs, digging for  and collecting worm data (using one of the free Citizen Science Opal packs), a trip to the aquarium to study plankton under the microscope and an energetic game of Star Orienteering.

On Sunday the focus was on Energy and the Viking history of the island. The Viking activities included landscape poetry, sound maps, family dramas and a superb  Viking Changing Rooms activity where groups had to piece together the interior of a Viking home.

The Energy activity introduced annotated sketches and photos. The groups explored the advantages and drawbacks of different energy production methods present on the Clyde (including wind, coal and nuclear) and considered possible and probable futures over the next 100 years based on these activities. IPads were used to GPS log and annotate photos and to film imaginative stories explaining the litter objects found on the beach from the perspective of someone from 2600!

The feedback from participants was overwhelmingly positive:

“I was not confident in my ability to come up with and deliver creative lessons which targeted the relevant CfE outcomes for Social Studies. With all the great ideas for games and activites I can transfer these skills to pretty much any outcome (with some tweaking of course).”

“The best bit was the practical nature of the whole weekend. It gave the opportunity to feel like the pupil and how they would benefit from all the different types of learning we experienced.”

“Daniel was absolutely fantastic at delivering every experience. His humour and intelligence go hand in hand.”

“The resources needed were easily accessible, cheap and did not require specialist knowledge.”

“I loved the rocky shore activity because it is something I could easily adapt at the allotment – searching through leaf piles and logs, etc.”

“I loved how they brought the history of the Vikings to life, incorporating Social Studies, literacy and Drama. I plan to adapt this activity next term during the Victorians IDL topic.”

“I enjoyed the course enormously. The course instructors were enthusiastic, passionate and very helpful. I look forward to taking outdoor learning to a higher level and delivering meaningful and engaging learning experiences to children.”

“Excellent opportunity for teachers to not only gain experience and knowledge of outdoor learning but it also provided an opportunity for teachers to get together and share experiences informally without paper work and expectations.”

The Education Scotland Social Studies team plan to run more opportunities in the future for primary and secondary teachers to improve their fieldwork skills.

Sign up now to the Social Studies E-Bulletin so you don’t miss out: http://bit.do/e-bulletin

Log on to the Social Studies Network on Glow to share your thoughts on Outdoor Learning: http://bit.do/socialstudiespl

Contact Daniel and his staff at Millport FSC for more information about class visits and OPAL Survey packs: enquiries.sco@field-studies-council.org

Keep Scotland Beautiful – Community Grant

Keep Scotland Beautiful


‘Our Community Grant’ is now OPEN!  Using proceeds from the single use carrier bag charge collected by Tesco Scotland, grants fixed at £250 are available NOW to local groups, to make small improvements to their local environment, bringing people together and raising a smile.   Eligible projects will include local action to improve the local environment, delivered in an environmentally sustainable manner, involving and benefitting the community, and will be volunteer led.  The deadline for applying is Monday 15 December.  Visit www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org/communitygrants for details.

Updated N5 and Higher Resources guides for Biology, Chemistry, Human Biology and Physics

The highly popular Resource guides for N5 and Higher have been updated with the latest SQA information and new links.

Two versions are available on the Sciences Glow 365 site http://bit.ly/glowsciences

Got some good links to share? Then post using the edit online feature on the editable resource guide.

Or use the pdf version for Education Scotland’s latest update.

These guides can also be found on the NQ Course Materials portal at the following links

Higher Biology
http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/nqcoursematerials/subjects/b/nqresource_tcm4829573.asp

Higher Human Biology
http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/nqcoursematerials/subjects/h/nqresource_tcm4844711.asp

N5 Biology
http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/nqcoursematerials/subjects/b/nqresource_tcm4838382.asp

Higher Chemistry
http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/nqcoursematerials/subjects/c/nqresource_tcm4844708.asp

N5 Chemistry
http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/nqcoursematerials/subjects/c/nqresource_tcm4838371.asp

Higher Physics
http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/nqcoursematerials/subjects/p/nqresource_tcm4843582.asp

N5 Physics
http://www.educationscotland.gov.uk/nqcoursematerials/subjects/p/nqresource_tcm4838378.asp