Children throughout the North East are discovering something new, inventing amazing things, and investigating the unknown… and they want you to join them!
STEM Clubs are an opportunity for school children to learn away from the confines of the classroom and national curriculum. Students can investigate and explore the science, technology, engineering, and maths that really interests them and STEM Club sessions could cover just about any topic.
Popular STEM Clubs have covered topics including: computer coding, biology and nature, maths puzzles (code cracking), robotics (and robot wars), engineering (and sustainable energy), rocketry, chemistry (and blowing stuff up), astronomy, physics, science talks, and the incredible things being discovered today.
The clubs are often held after school (from 3.30pm) or during lunchtimes but can take place at a variety of times and dates.
If you are already a STEM Ambassador it’s really easy to start supporting a local STEM Club. All you need to do is contact us at email@example.com, or on 0191 200 4453, and we’ll find you a STEM Club that needs your help.
If you’re not currently registered as a STEM Ambassador, getting started couldn’t be easier: Simply register at https://db.stemnet.org.uk/register/ambassador and our coordinators will be in touch to arrange your DBS check and induction training.
STEM Advisory Network – STEM Clubs Evening
We would like to invite you to our STEM Clubs evening on Thursday 20 June 2013. The event is aimed at STEM Ambassadors, volunteers, and teachers interested in learning more about STEM Clubs. At the event you can watch demonstrations of STEM Club activities and meet with teachers, and other people involved in clubs, to plan and support the STEM clubs programme.
Thursday 20th June 2013, 4pm – 6pm
@ New Sixth Form Building
Newcastle Sixth Form College
Newcastle upon Tyne
Sat Nav: Newcastle College, Rye Hill Campus, Scotswood Rd, NE4 7SA
Map: Google Maps Link Unfortunately google maps still thinks we are a building site but the main entrance is very obvious now on Elswick East Terrace roughly where you can see the little red crane on the google map image.
Invitation to all school pupils and teachers to participate in AuroraWatch UK.
AuroraWatchNet is a project to build, deploy and operate magnetometers for detecting when the aurora borealis is likely to be visible from the UK and other mid-latitude locations.
AuroraWatch UK will provide 10 magnetometers for schools to use free of charge in their teaching of science, technology and mathematics. They will select the schools which will make the best educational use of the magnetometer data. Pupils and teachers from the selected schools will also be invited to a conference where they can share their results and learn more about the aurora from space scientists at Lancaster University.
If you interested in participating please nominate a member of staff to complete the competition form before 25 June 2013. AuroraWatch will announce the results on their website on 1 July 2013.
For more information about the schools’ magnetometer project and the competition please see http://aurorawatch.net/
Newcastle upon Tyne,
Tyne and Wear,
An afternoon to bring together motivated educators and to illustrate the ideas behind Enlighten.
“Our goal is to create programmes that will raise achievement from teaching systems that enable and empower the students to learn, to raising self-esteem through powerful academic techniques, motivational tools and critical thinking.”
Open Educational Resource programme ‘The Virtual School’
Virtual school would like to invite teachers to contribute short audio lessons to be turned into learning videos. The videos will be distributed free of charge on the Virtual School YouTube Channel for use by teachers and science explainers or for pupils to watch at home.
Six new practical biology activities to engage students in Biology topics, from developing super-strength glue to investigating the decline of conker trees.
The activities are designed to enhance the curriculum, covering areas not supported by existing resources. They were developed with STEM Ambassadors in mind, and include guidance on introducing the topic, how to present the activity, structuring the session, equipment lists and health and safety notes.
The activities explore the following topics, providing STEM Ambassadors and teachers with guidance on introducing the topic, how to present the activity, structuring the session, equipment lists and health and safety notes:
Colour questions – what happens when coloured substances are mixed with oil and water?
The British Science Association has published a new guide for teachers about STEM project work. It’s likely to be of most interest to secondary teachers of STEM subjects who use (or would like to use) student-led project work as a way of teaching or doing extra-curricular activities. It’s been written by Linda Scott, an experienced CREST Coordinator and teacher educator at the University of Worcester, and supported by Intel.
The Schools Analyst Competition is an annual event organised by the Analytical Division of the Royal Society of Chemistry. Teams of three students, from the first year sixth form or equivalent groups, compete to solve a practical exercise requiring laboratory skills, interpretation, and problem solving within a specified period of time. Regional heats are held in the RSC regional centres, which for the North East are Huddersfield, Bradford, Newcastle, Teesside, and Sunderland. The results from the winners of these local heats are then compared, and the best team is selected to enter the national final.
The Sunderland heat of this competition will be held on Monday the 18th of March between 1:00pm and 5:30pm in the Fleming Building at Sunderland University.
The Newcastle heat of this competition will be held on Wednesday, 27th March 2013 between 4.30pm and 7.30pm in the Ellison Building Laboratories (EBA504) at Northumbria University.
Each school in the area is invited to enter one team of three students drawn from Year 12. The winning team will need to demonstrate practical competence, organisation, problem solving skills, and effective written communication. The winners are selected on the basis of a detailed report of their results and conclusions.
Laboratory and safety considerations mean that they can only accommodate a limited number (9) of teams of three. Entry will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis.
Each March thousands of secondary schools take part in National Science & Engineering Week to stimulate pupils’ interest in STEM subjects, encourage them to consider STEM careers and to raise the profile of their school. The free downloadable resources below make taking part easy and can also provide an engaging way for you to work with scientists and engineers. To access these and more register here.
Get set, demonstrate competition
National Science & Engineering Week are on the hunt for the very best demonstration ideas for science teachers and technicians. The new Get set, demonstrate competition is now open for nominations. Just use the easy online form to submit a video that you think shows an amazing demonstration.
Activity packs Free packs full of science and engineering hands-on activities and projects are produced each year for National Science & Engineering Week, and are available to download all year round.
4 packs are exclusively for secondary schools:
Genius Inventions This wide range of activities is mainly aimed at 14-16 year olds. With strong curriculum links, the activities cover ground-breaking inventions in three science disciplines, helping put students’ scientific knowledge into the context of invention and discovery.
Musical Moods Whilst the theme of this activity pack is around the topic of sound, these creative activities also link to electricity, human biology and behaviour and are suitable for students from the age of 11-16. Some cross-curricular activity might be possible with your Music department.
Future Morph These careers focussed activities are mainly aimed at 11-14 year olds. They engage students with the lives of real life scientists and help put their science learning into a personal context. The resources fit with some elements of “How
Science Works” and could contribute towards outstanding/good practice in terms of providing a broad science curriculum.
Rockin’ Crystals With activities suitable for students aged 11-16, this varied pack includes hands on experiment and activity ideas. Activities link to those parts of the KS3 and KS4 chemistry curriculum that relate to states of matter and structure of materials.
Case studies Secondary school case studies provide accounts of some of the best events and activities that have taken part during National Science & Engineering Week since 2009 and will give event and activities ideas for organisers.
Ideal for first-time organisers, these guides present step-by-step instructions in how to arrange publicity, how to organise an NSEW event or activity and where to find funding.
To access these and more register here. It only takes a few minutes to get started.
The IET Education Fund provides support for local education projects which are endorsed by IET Local Networks.
Any organisation capable of developing and delivering UK-based projects which promote STEM subjects to school children can apply for funding, including schools, IET Local Networks and IET TPNs. Awards of up to £5000 can be offered.
Applications for funding must be endorsed by the IET Local Network in which the project will be carried out, and applicants require a referee who can confirm their ability to deliver the project.
2013 funding round
Bids for funding will be accepted from 1 January 2013 to 18 March 2013 for projects taking place 1 May 2013 to 30 April 2014. Bids submitted after 18 March cannot be considered.
A formal judging process will take place, with judges’ decisions expected 26 April 2013.
To apply for funding you must:
read the criteria and guidelines
develop your application in collaboration with your IET Local Network
submit your application electronically to the regional liaison officer
All successful applicants are required to submit a report on completion of the funded project. Applicants who have not submitted a report for a previously funded project will not be considered for further funding until the outstanding report has been submitted and acknowledged.
These foundation courses team students up with role-model engineers who will guide students through every stage of product development to solve real engineering challenges! Previous students have worked with engineers from companies such as Babcock, Jaguar Land Rover, Rolls-Royce and the Royal Navy.
2-5 April, ECITB Engineering Experience, Harper Adams University College, Shropshire (splendid, rural location in the Central England!), £95
8-10 April, Engineering Experience, University of Liverpool, £175
Each course has a capacity of 100 students; 10 places maximum per school for each course.
Year 10 Physics in Engineering
Work alongside experienced engineers, scientists and academics and encounter the extraordinary world of physics in engineering. This brand new course gives students the chance to discover how physics is applied to problem-solving in our rapidly changing high-tech world. Projects and masterclasses will be run by National Grid, National Space Centre, National Nuclear Laboratory, Rugby School, University of Warwick and the University of Leicester. Only 50 places available; 5 places maximum per school. Bursaries worth £80 are available to students attending from certain schools. See website for details.
9-11 April, Rugby School, £95
Course fees include all accommodation, meals, course materials, supervision and social activities. Teachers are advised to encourage students to apply early as places are allocated on a first come, first served basis. Students can apply directly from the Smallpeice website.
If you are looking for a great hands-on STEM activity take a look at Practical Action’s Floating Garden Challenge, designed for ages 7-19.
The problem: In Bangladesh land is frequently flooded as a result of climate change, ruining crops grown for food. The result is that families go hungry.
The Challenge: To design and make a model solution to the problem that will enable farmers to grow crops even when the land is flooded.
Students test their models to see which one holds the most weight when floated in water then look at how Practical Action has worked with communities in Bangladesh to build floating gardens out of local, sustainable material.
Resources to help you deliver the challenge are free and include a PowerPoint, teacher’s notes, student worksheets, certificates and an A2 poster which you can request free.
The STEM Directories Grant scheme is now open for applications from teachers (deadline 3pm on Tuesday 30 October). You can promote yourself to teachers, and you’re eligible for the grant scheme if you get yourself on there.
A bit more information about the grants
Grants of up to £500 for you to have a STEM enrichment activity take place at schools in England before March 2013, to be chosen from those listed in the online STEM Directories (www.stemdirectories.org.uk).
The aim of STEM Directories Grants Scheme is to foster the use of the STEM Directories, enable wider access to activities listed and support STEM teachers. The scheme is designed to not only raise awareness of enrichment activities but to support teachers’ professional development and enhance the experience in school by helping integrate enrichment activities in curricular practice. Grants are open to all state-funded schools in England. Applications are particularly welcome from both schools in underprivileged areas and high achieving schools.
Some activities may be free, in which case funds can be used to help integrate these in classroom practice (e.g. for materials and/or CPD). Grant funds will be transferred once the activity has been delivered (usually directly to the activity provider). Please remember the maximum grant is £500 and any further cost is the responsibility of the school.
Providers, if you’re not listed on the site, you won’t be eligible for teachers to apply for a grant to access your scheme. They also provide money to the school even if your scheme is free, so everyone wins!
The "A-team" from the All Hallows Catholic High School, Lancashire, have lived up to their name to become winners of STEM Challenge 10, the last competition in a successful series ahead of London 2012. They had the most innovative and exciting plan for a local sporting event, created using their maths and science skills.
Cisco, STEMNET and the Pearson Foundation challenged students to consider the venue, location, sport, resources, facilities and equipment to plan a large scale, accessible and sustainable event in their home area.
The finalists presented a Dragon’s Den style pitch to a panel of expert judges on 6 July at Cisco House, London, overlooking the Olympic Park in Stratford. The judging was based on the core Values of the Olympic and Paralympic Movement: excellence, friendship, respect, courage, determination, inspiration and equality.
From blind football to an aquatics centre, all of the finalist schools embraced and excelled in the Challenge. Despite extremely tough competition, the All Hallows Catholic High School stood out through their excellent data analysis surrounding their swimming venue. It was inspired from a love of circles and presented with nails reflecting the Olympics colours.
STEM Challenges are a series of competitions designed to encourage young people aged 11-16 to use the skills learnt in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics lessons to think and work creatively about the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. STEMNET (The Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Network) works in partnership with major organisations to nationally manage each Challenge for UK Secondary Schools.
Nearly 200 UK state-maintained secondary school teams took part in this final Challenge and were put through a rigorous regional judging process, in which eight teams made it through to the final:
All Hallows Catholic High School, Lancashire
Angley School, Kent and Medway
Kendrick School, Surrey and rest of Berkshire
Perins School, Hampshire and Isle of Wight
South Axholme School, Humberside
The Elton High School, Greater Manchester
The Gryphon School, Wiltshire, Swindon and Dorset
Woodham Community Technology College, County Durham and Tees Valley
The winning team won £2500 for their school’s STEM Club and eight tickets for Olympic Hockey. Second place was awarded to Woodham Technology Community College who received £1000 for their STEM Club and eight tickets for Olympic Canoeing whilst the third place team from South Axholme Academy were awarded £500 for their STEM Club and eight tickets for Olympic Rowing. The Elton High School were also Highly Commended by the judges for an excellent use of research, sources and surveys.
STEM Challenge 10 forms part of Cisco’s "Out of the blocks" project which gives schools the chance to explore the events and venues of London 2012 whilst practising maths and science skills. More information about the "Out of the blocks Maths and Science Series 2012" project can be found at www.mathsandscience2012.co.uk.
SCENE at Newcastle College would like to invite teachers to bring groups of 5-10 of their Year 10 students to an exciting free event at Newcastle College on Friday 29th June.
The "Rio +20 Youth Solutions Conference" will give students a chance to debate the same global issues to be discussed by world leaders at the "Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development" in June.
Young people will have the opportunity to see how these issues are affecting the North East as part of the College’s role in the UN Regional Centre for Expertise (RCE) in Education for Sustainable Development. Through this they aim to give young people a voice about sustainability issues. The solutions from the event, suggested by young people, will be discussed at the next annual meeting for the global RCE.
Debates will be facilitated by passionate Sixth Form Students from the College, industry experts and professionals, and teachers will be invited to support debates. Also during the day we hope to provide information to students about careers and training in sustainability and the environment sector.
Issues to be discussed on a local level:
• Flooding and Drought
(More information about Rio+20 can be found at www.uncsd2012.org/rio20)
The event will be suitable for gifted and talented students as well as subject areas like citizenship, sciences, geography or a school eco-committee. Please register with Rachael Little via email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 0191 200 4453.
Everyone who teaches physics, from to PGCE students to technicians to fully seasoned teachers, are being offered a day of training sponsored by The Institute of Physics, Science Learning Centre North East and Durham University.
A range of interactive workshops will provide the opportunity to explore some of the latest development in physics and new resources for teaching physics in the classroom.
There is a choice of four workshops, of which participants will need to select two from the following: “Physics and Toys”, ”ICT in the science classroom”, “Jolting the jaded – do physics” or “Seeing inside the body: practical medical physics activities and resources”. More information can be found here.
The day is being help at the Durham University
on 21 June 2012 from 9.30 a.m. – 4.00 p.m.
The day is an excellent opportunity and is completely FREE, with lunch and refreshments included. Places must be pre-booked through the Science Learning Centre North East. (Failure to attend without prior notice will incur a £25 administration fee.)
This out-of-the-box poster competition is a simple way to take part in National Science & Engineering Week, either as homework or a class project.
The British Science Association is launching an ideas challenge for 5 – 14 year olds asking them to invent a multi-terrain global racer that uses renewable power.
Pupils will need to invent one method of transportation that can carry themselves and two friends across a range of challenging terrains in their global adventure! The race could last many weeks, so vehicles will need to be large enough to carry supplies.
Racers must be presented in the form of a poster with a drawing of the invention accompanied by an explanation of how it works. Full teacher’s notes will be provided.
Entries will be judged by a panel and the best researched and explained in each category will win a selection of prizes.
Macmillan and Kingfisher Childrens’ Books are generously providing £25 worth of books for each age category. There is also a Nintendo DS up for grabs for each of the younger age categories plus a Nintendo 3DS for the winner of the 11-14 age group. The closing date for all postal entries will be Monday 2nd April 2012.
Here’s a quick run-down of National Science and Engineering Week events open to the public and schools in the North East. Click on the links to view full descriptions of the events
National Science & Engineering Week: Events and activities for everyone, 9–18 March 2012
In 2012, National Science & Engineering Week explores “our world in motion.”
National Science & Engineering Week shines the spotlight each March on how science, technology, engineering and maths relate to our everyday lives and helps to inspire the next generation of scientists with fun and participative activities.
With over 4,500 events and activities attended by 1.7 million people in 2011 and generating over £1m in press coverage, this is the UK’s widest grassroots celebration of all things science and engineering. You can join the celebration by attending an event or taking part in our national activities.
Request for Expressions of Interest in Tendering for IET Faraday programme elements for the period 2012 to 2014
Expressions of Interest to Tender are invited from organisations who would be interested in tendering for individual elements of the IET Faraday programme or for the delivery of all elements. Expressions of Interest are invited from individual companies or consortia.
The Institution of Engineering and Technology (The IET) is a world-leading professional members’ organisation for the engineering and technology sectors. The IET Faraday programme is a major part of the Education for Schools and Colleges programme which includes print resources; online, curriculum-linked engineering case studies, engineer profiles and accompanying teaching and learning resources; and, the annual IET Faraday Challenge Day competition.
The elements of the IET Faraday programme that are being offered out to contract are:
IET Faraday Challenge Day competition – an annual competition currently consisting of 45 in-school, contractor-led, engineering-themed competition days for children aged 12 and 13, plus 12 similar events held at university venues for their linked schools. The contractors will be required to:
develop the competition in collaboration with IET staff;
manage and deliver the events at venues across the UK selected by the IET; and,
produce a version of the competition that can be self-delivered by teachers (IET Faraday Challenge Day in a Box) for those schools who have not been selected for the main competition
IET Faraday teaching resources – a collection of web-based engineering case studies that highlight cutting-edge examples of modern engineering and the engineers behind them. These are accompanied by on-line games for students and a range of lesson activities that are linked to the secondary curricular for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales for Science, Maths, D&T, ICT and Engineering Diploma.
Those submitting an Expression of Interest will be sent the Invitation to Tender document and examples of how the IET Faraday resources are presented. Expressions of Interest may be submitted, and we will continue to send out the documents up until the day before the deadline for tender submissions.
The deadline for receipt of the final tender submissions will be 09:00 on 20 December 2012. The tender submissions will be reviewed and short-listing will take place. Those short-listed will be informed by 17:00 on 22 December. They will then be required to undertake a presentation to IET staff and advisors on Thursday 12 or Friday 13 January 2012.
Supporting teaching and learning in colleges
Are you interested in becoming an ementor?
Ementoring is a flexible way to volunteer and an opportunity for you and your mentee to develop new skills. By sharing your experiences, you can support other people to grow in confidence and explore options for their future. All you need to be a mentor is a willingness to help other people and an online connection. Because ementoring is done online, you can do it at a time and place that suits you.
Who are we looking for?
Mentors can be from all levels, working in an engineering related profession or with an engineering background, and from a variety of ethnic/cultural backgrounds and social classes. Ideally you would have progressed up through the further education route or have knowledge of the further education sector. You will need to be enthusiastic, passionate about Engineering, want to help other people and have a willingness to share your experiences and insights to help encourage young people in further education to remain committed to a career in engineering. It will be helpful, but not essential, if you were an existing STEM Ambassador and have previous experience of working with young people.
What is involved?
Once you have registered and completed your training, the Bright Links engineering team will match you with up to four mentees who will be students in further education colleges who are studying engineering courses at Level 2, Level 3 and possibly Level 4. They will be looking for advice and support around study skills, apprenticeships, engineering careers, applying to university and much more. You will communicate with your mentees through the safe and secure Bright Links ementoring website, which will have its own engineering section dedicated to this Engineering Further Education ementoring project. To be effective you need to be willing to spend between 30 minutes and 1 hour a week supporting your mentees.
Become a mentor: If you think you’ve got what it takes to be a mentor, apply to the Bright Links engineering programme today at www.brightlinksengineering.org
Free STEM Activity days in your school or college
– apply now to host an IET Faraday Challenge Day
The Faraday Challenge Days are one day activities, designed for six teams of six students aged 12-13 years, delivered in your school by the IET.
They give students the opportunity to research, design and build prototype solutions to genuinely tough engineering problems.
There will be 45 Challenge Days this season, starting in September 2011, with the winners
of each event winning prizes for themselves and their school. The top three teams from across the UK get an all expenses paid trip to the National Final in London in June 2012 to compete for a cash prize of up to £1000 for their school.
Two ways to take part
Each host school needs a school hall or large classroom for the day, and six teams of six students to take part (36 students in total).
Schools can either apply to:
enter all six teams from their own school, or
enter one team from their own school, and invite five teams from local schools to join them.
The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) is one of the world’s leading professional societies for the engineering and technology community. It is through its charitable arm that
we are able to provide the IET Faraday Challenge Days at no charge to UK schools.
As you know, water is a basic requirement for all life, yet water resources are facing increasing demands and competition from users. The UN General Assembly assigned 22 March of each year as the World Day for Water after the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in 1992. Since 1995 World Water Day has been celebrated across the world, raising the issues related to water. In 2011 there were over 600 World Water Day events being held around the world, one of which was at Kenton School.
Water for the World
Over 100 people from 12 primary schools across Tyne and Wear turned up to support World Water Day and to gain a greater awareness of water scarcity issues. A range of entertaining workshops were on display to get stuck in to; from scientific experiments to mapping water scarcity on Google Maps to throwing cups of water at sixth formers – the latter being very popular! Many thanks are in order for the workshop deliverers including: the Environment Agency, Newcastle University, TDR, Kenton School, Sir Charles Parsons Primary School, WaterAid as well as SCENE Ambassadors from Newcastle College Sixth Form.
Are you an employer or IT professional who wants to use your skills and experience to help inspire the next generation? Get involved with IT education by signing up for e-skills UK’s IT Ambassadors scheme.
Why IT Ambassadors?
Fewer students than ever are choosing to study IT-related degrees at university and the sector is experiencing shortages as a result. IT Ambassadors aims to harness the enthusiasm of people who work in technology to inspire more students to take up rewarding careers in IT.
Who can get involved?
From games designers to business analysts, software developers to project managers, IT professionals at any stage of their careers can become IT Ambassadors.
What will I be doing?
You’ll be supporting IT education and careers activity in schools and colleges across the UK. Ways you can get involved include:
giving a careers talk in schools
hosting visits to your company for students
providing information about your company for a student careers website
providing work experience for students
How IT Ambassadors works
1. Find an activity
Businesses and individuals can explore the e-skills activity pages to find a suitable way to get involved with schools. If you’re an individual volunteer, you can find something that matches your interests, experience and availability. If you’re a company you can find a range of activities designed to suit a variety of business interests.
2. Get advice and guidance
A range of resources to help you engage with schools are available. Everything from templates to case studies and guides are available for download on the e-skills activity pages.
3. Connect with a school
The IT Ambassadors scheme is a partner of the STEM Ambassador programme. You can find a local school to work with through STEMNET’s network of schools. For Tyne and Wear schools contact email@example.com
If you’re planning to work on an individual basis with students in schools you’ll be eligible for a free CRB check as part of the STEM Ambassador programme.
The Promoting STEM careers in your classroom course is on 17-18th March 2011 at the National science learning Centre in York. The course is designed for teachers of STEM subjects from Key Stage three to Post- 16, careers education and information, advice and guidance practitioners. It will provide opportunities for STEM staff to extend and enhance the work they do already. Tap into a wealth of new resources and support networks to raise awareness about the exciting STEM related careers available to young people. Hear from schools who have successfully integrated STEM careers awareness into their curriculum. Network with experts from industry, engineering, higher education and the Department of Education’s STEM cohesion team and other STEM professionals.
This conference carries an ENTHUSE Award of £751, an easy to apply for bursary available to all teachers, tutors and lecturers from maintained schools or colleges to help cover costs plus a small amount of money to help implement ideas once back in the classroom. For further information about the ENTHUSE Award, please visit www.slcs.ac.uk/enthuseaward
Promoting STEM Careers in your Classroom
Date: 17 – 18 March 2011
Course Cost: £351 +VAT
ENTHUSE Award: £751.00
Electric car racing event – Wednesday 6 July 2011 at Croft Circuit, Darlington
Your school is invited to participate in this exciting Greenpower electric car racing event. Your school still has time to get involved, to design, build and race an electric car.
Greenpower is dedicated to promoting engineering and technology as a career option to students aged 9 to 25 in any form of full or part-time education. This is achieved through unique hands on projects to design, build and race an electric car, with the support of an engineering ambassador.
By taking part in the competition, all participants are given an insight into the real, tangible world of science and engineering. The competition is very popular, which stands as a testament to its unique approach to engineering and its ability to bring together and excite young people from a variety of different areas and backgrounds.
Not only does Greenpower approach the idea of science and engineering from a less mainstream direction than normal lessons or after school clubs, it also encourages creativity and most importantly enthusiasm and cooperation in problem solving invaluable skills for any young person. For the school getting involved will bring the following:
- A project which can be used to enhance the engineering diploma or CREST award or other STEM activities.
- Links with Mechanical, Electrical and Design engineers as mentors.
- National and regional recognition.
- A visit to North east school that has already taken part to share experience.
The Institution of Mechanical Engineers is delighted to offer continued support to Greenpower. Participation in this exciting challenge requires teamwork, engineering skills, commitment and enthusiasm.
If you are willing to give your students a brilliant opportunity to get involved in a project like this and would like to receive more information about how to enter this Websites:
Institution of Mechanical Engineers – http://imeche.org/ Greenpower
Congratulations are in order for 10 projects from schools in the North East who competed in the regional Big Bang fair in July. They are going forward to compete in the National Science and Engineering competition at the Big Bang fair held at London’s ExceL on 10th – 12th March 2011. Shows including ‘Brainiac Live’, ‘Bang Goes the Theory’ and activities like ‘Amoeba to Zebra’, ‘The Ever Wondered Why Roadshow’, ‘Grow Your Own Body Parts’ and ‘Hydraulics for Frolics’ will be taking place at the event.
For more information on The Big Bang fair, to register your attendance and book tickets please visit www.thebigbangfair.co.uk.
Congratulations and the best of luck to the following schools and their projects:
Central Newcastle High School
Electronic Musical Keyboard
Electronic Safety Device for Bike Users to Wear
Newminster Middle School
Which Tattoos Last the Longest
Queen Elizabeth High School
Gun Barrel Movement on a Challenger Tank
Sacred Heart High School
St Bede’s RC School
Safety First Warning Lights
STEM Outreach would also like to congratulate and wish the best of luck to Corylus Learning’s Colin Wilkinson and Sarah McLusky at Sparks Education who will be co-ordinating the Big Bang North East at New College Durham on 12th July 2011. For more information on next year’s regional Big Bang fair feel free to contact Colin at firstname.lastname@example.org or Sarah at email@example.com or visit www.thebigbangfair.co.uk/northeast/
Pearson Publishing is pleased to announce the launch of an exciting resource that promotes STEM in schools.
The ‘F1 in Schools Curriculum Resource’ enables students to follow the steps that a professional team would take in preparing to race a car.
It prepares students for the F1 in Schools Technology Challenge, a multi-disciplinary contest in which teams of students use computer aided design (CAD) and computer aided manufacture (CAM) software to design, analyse, manufacture, test and then race miniature balsa wood racing cars powered by compressed gas.
Intended to develop students’ interest in, and knowledge of, engineering and design, the ‘F1 in Schools Curriculum Resource’ enables schools to run a cross-curricular project. It is an excellent way to move STEM work from after-school clubs to timetabled classroom activities, and thereby give STEM more prominence in school life.
The resource is provided online, and an annual subscription costs just £295+VAT per school. Discounts are available if several schools purchase together; please contact us for further details. You can also encourage schools in your area to subscribe by sending them the following link to an information site, which is at: http://www.parsonpublishing.co.uk/fscr/
To view a brief demonstration of the ‘F1 in Schools Curriculum Resource’ (Bloodhound SSC), enter the user name ‘demo’ and the password ‘password’ at: http://fscr.pearson.co.uk
This edition of the ‘F1 in Schools Curriculum Resource’ is for the 9-14 age group and Bloodhound SSC level of the challenge; subsequent editions for the F1 Class level will be available shortly.
To express your interest in editions for the 11-14 or 15-19 age group at the F1 Class level of the challenge, or for any other queries about the ‘F1 in Schools Curriculum Resource’, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01223 350555.
Do you have a question or issue you would like to explore in your own teaching? Are you interested in applying for some funding to support you in some aspect of teacher enquiry / action research?
The NCETM Regional Project Programme has proved very successful over the last two years in helping people to get started on such projects and supporting them through the process of application, development and final report writing.
See the portal for details of current and previous projects such as the Throckley Primary Lesson Study, Stockton Riverside College Collaborative Mathematics, Garforth Community College Dialogic Teaching or the Durham LA Developing Pedagogy network.
Your regional STEM Champion is looking for case studies and inviting you to apply for Action Research fundingNCETM are looking for case studies to promote effective practice in the region across the STEM subjects (Science, Engineering and Mathematics). Each successful project will qualify for a £500 grant from the regional STEM priority fund.
Your regional STEM Champion is also inviting bids for £1000 from your organisation to support Action Research Projects. Application is through the LSIS funding portal via the LSIS Excellence Gateway.
Other LSIS funding is also available to apply for during October /November.
STEM Cascade training – £1000 to create more teaching and learning change agents within the STEM subjects, with a minimum of 10 new change agents being trained.
STEM CPD – £1000 to explore one or two STEM subject areas – aimed at those starting to explore improved teaching and learning in STEM.
Step Up in STEM – £5000 to explore two or more STEM subject areas e.g. through CPD, curriculum development, action based research – aimed at those with experience of the STEM and / or Teaching and Learning Programme.
Calling all maths subject leaders in the post-16 sector
A final reminder about the first NCETM national online seminar for mathematics subject leaders in the post-16 sector. In the seminar we will:
address some of the big issues that post-16 subject leaders face;
suggest resources that can support you in the role;
give you the chance to hear from other subject leaders and share your experiences and challenges;
offer you the opportunity to join a continuing post-16 subject leaders’ network.
Aspiring subject leaders are also very welcome.
All in the comfort of your own home … and with no travelling and no cover costs. Pour yourself a cuppa, pull up a chair, and join in.
The meeting will take place on Wednesday 3 November from 8.00 to 9.00pm. If you are interested in joining one of these meetings and/or would like to know more, please contact Phillipa Marshall. There is a limit of around 20 places and they are going fast, so you are advised to apply early.
The Make a Mint Challenge is a stimulating, two stage competition open to young people aged 14 – 19 from across Newcastle. The competition encourages young people to develop key business skills, gain an innovative approach to problem solving and generate real business solutions for a future world. Each Challenge invites young people to consider the next generation of innovative products and how they meet the needs of a future marketplace.
The Challenge is in 2 stages:
Gateway Stage 22nd September – 20th October 2010
Individuals are challenged to generate ideas, designs and applications for new products meeting the brief provided. Ideas must be exciting, innovative and eye-catching. Entrants work individually and submit entries online.
Challenge Final 16th November 2010
A design and build teamwork stage held at the Spark in the Park Festival at St James Park on 16th November 2010. The Challenge Final includes business rigour, planning, teamwork and budgeting. The overall winner will be the team that best meets the Final Challenge brief in an innovative and practical way.
To enter the Make a Mint Challenge, students must register their details and complete the online Gateway Challenge no later than Wednesday 20th October 2010.
The Challenge is run in conjunction with Newcastle City Council and the Make your Mark campaign and offers the opportunity to take part in a business ideas competition that celebrates and stimulates enterprise skills and talents. The challenge is free to enter and offers the opportunity for individuals to win prizes for themselves and recognition for their schools /youth groups.
Please click on the link below to find out more about the challenge or alternatively download a information pack.
Can your students work as a team, design a community sports venue and overcome engineering problems?
Want them to have fun putting science, engineering, maths and technology to the test? Then it’s time to take on the Create Sport Challenge
What is it?
The Create Sport Challenge is a FREE national competition. It allows 12/13 year old students to work in teams with a built environment professional to complete a challenging project that introduces real-world problems to the classroom.
Why take part?
Your students will:
Get active input and guidance from a working professional
Use their creativity and curriculum knowledge to overcome a range of engineering problems
Become more aware of the world around them and understand the things engineers do every day to solve worldwide and local issues
Develop skills in project management, design & technology, communication, presentation and organisation
What will your students do?
Work together as a team (20 to 30 hours for CREST awards)
Create a design for a community sports venue
Build a model of the venue
Write a detailed report of the different project stages and the problems encountered
Use the competition website and social networking tools to help with the project
What’s the prize?
Teams will be judged regionally and the best will be invited to present their work at a grand final in June 2011 at the Institution of Civil Engineers in London. The prize for 1st place will be £1,000 for the school of the winning team. Prizes for other places include a school visit by an athlete and a trip to a major sporting venue.
Do you teach some young scientists or engineers who deserve recognition? If they are 11-18 with a great project or invention…enter the National Science & Engineering Competition today. There is over £50,000 of prizes, including cash awards and trips abroad – plus the prestige of winning a high profile competition for your school or college and the teachers involved.
The lucky finalists will be invited to showcase their work to around 24,000 students, teachers, journalists and VIPs visiting The Big Bang: UK Young Scientists and Engineers Fair in London in March 2011. Here your students can mix and compete with the country’s best – and gather tips and advice from working scientists and engineers from all fields in business and research. With plenty of individual and team prizes up for grabs, there are lots of opportunities for all students, and the two winning individuals in the senior category will be crowned the UK Young Scientist of the Year and UK Young Engineer of the Year.
For the first time, NSEC is offering a prize for specialist schools, sponsored by the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust (SSAT). Eligibility is wider than simply schools who have student competitors and it has a separate application process (via SSAT). Any school with a STEM specialism (Maths & Computing, Science, Technology or Engineering) can apply. Details are on the NSEC website:
Part of the Official London 2012 Education Programme
STEM Challenges are a series of competitions which link the curriculum to the inspiring Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Each challenge incorporates a range of activities for schools and once in a lifetime prizes can be won!
“The STEM Challenge students feel privileged to be a part of the competition. This is the best extra-curricular activity I’ve ever been involved with!” ~ Pam Large, Sacred Heart High School.
The STEM Challenges are ten activities designed for KS3 (or equivalent) students and inspired by London 2012. Each Challenge is a competition focusing on a different aspect of either the preparations for London 2012, or the event itself. The Challenges provide a cross-curricular approach to the STEM subjects, which benefits students in their academic work, whilst allowing them to develop skills and values that are essential outside the classroom. The activities have been designed for use in a club environment (e.g. a STEM Club) or during lessons.
The STEM Challenges are managed by STEMNET (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Network) in association with the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG), and are funded by the Department for Education.
New Challenges are introduced each term and last approximately 6 to 8 weeks. They provide an opportunity for students aged 11-14 to explore, experiment and innovate! Each team is set a task related to London 2010, which gives students the chance to experience a combination of hands-on testing and research.
STEM Ambassadors are a free resource available to support your students and clubs in the Challenges. STEM Ambassadors volunteer their time to help excite young people about Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. They have proven to be a vital resource for schools and colleges:
“The pupils valued the comments they received from STEM Ambassadors. It was great for them to have experts who really knew what they were talking about. Pupils were encouraged to discuss their ideas more as they were keen to improve their designs and complete the task to the best of their abilities.” ~ Lucy Rowe, St Mary’s Middle School, Puddletown, Dorset.
“STEMNET, you have solved my problem! We have no budget to pay Science speakers for our school and I’m so pleased to have made contact with you.” ~ Mrs Gaur, Shirley High School, Croydon, London.
STEM Challenges aim to support children and young people across the UK in the development of their leadership, personal, thinking and life skills. In each Challenge, a team of students work together to develop and achieve the seven core values of the Olympic and Paralympic games, these are: excellence, friendship, respect, courage, determination, inspiration and equality. Team work and enthusiasm are essential!
How to get involved in the STEM Challenges
It’s easy to get involved- simply register on the website www.stemchallenges.net The sign-up process is quick and simple- and you can go back to enter as many teams as you like from your school. What’s more, if your school is part of the STEM Clubs Network and you are a club leader- then it’s even easier. Just select your name from the list and you’re done!
We will send you a newsletter with regular updates on the Challenges, including information on forthcoming Challenge launch-dates and deadlines.
“Thank you so much for all your help! I have been really impressed by STEMNET’s advice and your organisation of our Scientists who were first rate and ideal for our purposes.” ~ Rebecca Jones, Science Co-ordinator, The Pointer School, London.
STEM Challenge 1
Challenge: Design an Eco-friendly National Handball Centre.
Winners: Appleton Academy from Wyke, West Yorkshire.
Prize: Trip to the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Switzerland.
The first STEM Challenge required students to design a National Handball Arena for the 2012 Olympics. The STEM Club at Appleton Academy began the Challenge by testing out different surfaces for the floor of the Handball court. In groups, the members of the STEM Club completed experiments on types of laminate flooring they had constructed and analysed how recorded balls behaved on different surfaces around school.
The successful team, from year nine, then designed a stadium based on a segmented orange. They worked with STEM Ambassador Phil Spencer, a building surveyor and the technology department to prepare scale diagrams and models to show the layout of the main arena.
The winning features of the design include the segmental structure of the sphere-shaped dome, which would allow natural light and ventilation into the arena. The team incorporated the use of eco friendly solar panels to achieve the environmental objective of the challenge. At the presentation event, the judges commended the team for their work and leadership skills.
“Winning the STEM Challenge, a national competition, is the result of a great deal of hard work and commitment by our students, and their excitement and enjoyment of science created by their teachers and the STEM Club.” ~ Dwayne Saxton, Academy Principal.
“It is fantastic that the hard work and skills of our pupils has been recognized nationally. This project has been completed in our after-school club – the pupils’ enthusiasm and willingness to invest their own time reflects the interest they have developed in their lessons.” ~ Barbara Hey, Advanced Specialist Teacher in Science at the Academy and STEM club co-coordinator.
STEM Challenge 2
Challenge: adidas asked students to design a new glove for Olympic and Paralympic Canoeing, Rowing or Sailing.
Winners: Heolddu Comprehensive School, Bargoed.
Prizes: £3,000 worth of STEM Club equipment and the latest in adidas sports clothing.
The second STEM Challenge required students to design a new glove for adidas (Official Sportswear Partner to London 2012) to be used by top Olympic and Paralympic athletes in Canoeing, Rowing or Sailing events. The Challenge was launched by double Olympic Gold medalist James Cracknell.
Students at Heolddu Comprehensive School decided to design a new glove for rowers, who don’t tend to wear gloves as they can cause their hands to sweat, impeding the action of rowing. The pupils relished the opportunity to produce a specially designed glove, which, made with the right materials could allow breathability and make a major contribution to the sport.
Once the team had decided on the most important properties to include in the design of their glove, they used a range of tests, activities and factsheets provided by STEMNET in order to research their design.
Heolddu beat stiff competition from seven other teams from around the country that made it through to the final, where they faced a Dragon’s Den style interview and grilling from the judges, including Olympic gold medallist rower, Tom James.
The students’ design is so inventive it is now being commercially developed by adidas. According to the company, the design was so innovative that it could give our Olympians the winning edge!
“We were thrilled and honoured to win such a prestigious competition!” ~ Owen Griffiths, Science Teacher, Heolddu Comprehensive School.
The Royal Society’s Partnership Grants scheme is now open. You can apply for up to £3000 to work with scientists and engineers on creative investigations that inspire students with the excitement and wonder of cutting-edge science or engineering research.
Funds are available for projects working with students aged between 5-19, as long as the project involves a UK school or college, and a practising scientist or engineer. The next round for applications closes on 5 November 2010. For more details about eligibility criteria and to find out how to apply, go to http://royalsociety.org/partnership.
Things are really hotting up for Big Bang North East! Blue Peter science presenter Steve Mould will be presenting the awards ceremony, featuring regional finalists of the Young Engineer for Britain Competition and CREST Awards. Steve will also be performing some of his favourite experiments in front of a live audience of school pupils from the North East.
See Blue Peter science presenter Steve Mould on YouTube: