The education arm of the Edinburgh Science charity, Generation Science, is an educational programme touring Scottish schools delivering, through Edinburgh Science Learning, a range of engaging workshops and shows for school children, inspiring them to learn more about STEM (science, technology, engineering, maths) subjects. The programme plays an important role in the Scottish Government’s STEM strategy to support the children’s science education and broaden access to it.
This year, Generation Science celebrates 30 years, having reached nearly 1.2 million pupils around the country over the three decades. Through this and various other Edinburgh Science Learning projects, the charity reaches 60,000 people every year.
This year, thanks to the generous support from funders and partners, Generation Science is being delivered free with 420 boxes being distributed among schools to over 10,000 children around the country with the science experiences taking place between 19 April and 18 June.
Edinburgh Science Director and CEO Dr Simon Gage said “The world needs more imaginative and determined problem solvers, now more than ever. The seed of the idea to become one germinates in young minds in their primary school classrooms. Generation Science is, and has been for 30 years, our way of feeding and cultivating this talent and desire in young people, wherever they are in Scotland and whatever their background. City centre, rural, island schools – we go to them all.”
The Generation Science 2021 offer has been reshaped for remote delivery in classrooms to ensure pupils don’t miss out on the unique science experiences delivered each year. The programme, that is linked to the Curriculum for Excellence and includes 5 engaging science experiences designed for children as young as nursery up to P7, has everything a teacher needs to engage and inspire their pupils to explore STEM-related subjects, offering a variety of pre-recorded content, loan kits and make-along boxes to get children out of their chairs and work hands-on.
The inclusion of follow-up teachers’ resources, training and access to the expert team of science communicators continues in 2021 with a teacher at Kirkhill Primary School in Highlands commenting “Brilliant engaging workshop. The children thoroughly enjoyed it! The teachers’ notes are simple and useful and give us confidence when we’re unsure how to follow up.”
Three new products are part of this year’s offer – The Power Pack, during which pupils learn about electricity and renewable energy; Speedy Sails that invites children to take a problem-solving approach to building a land yacht and Make a Move that explores the mysteries of the human body.
Returning as a loan kit available to schools for up to 10 days is Robo Constructors that allows children to solve problems creatively as they use a simple and intuitive set of Cubelets to build and command a robot. Also on offer an immersive storytelling experience which is about sound called Ella’s Wobble where young children can build their own musical instruments.
Edinburgh Science Foundation is a charity that also runs the UK’s biggest Science Festival, delivering science projects and events around the world as well as enabling various educational projects such as the STEM careers-focused Careers Hive.