Winners of the STEM Discovery Week 2017 competitions!
STEM Discovery Week was celebrated from 24 to 30 April 2017. On this occasion, Scientix invited teachers and educators to participate in three contests. The winning contributions to those competitions are showcased on this page.
78 science teachers shared 105 posters with us for the STEM Discovery Week! We asked teachers to show how Scientix resources can be used, and we received a number of great posters! Following a public vote of 80 shortlisted posters, a Scientix jury evaluated the most popular posters submitted via Facebook and Twitter, after which the following two were selected as the best! Scientix congratulates all the winners!
Designed by: Radoslav Radanov, Bulgaria.
Resources used: Snow Flakes (Mascil) and Dynamic Hearts (Mascil)
Designed by: Cornelia Melcu, Romania.
Resources used: Blue marble in empty space (astroEDU), Build a safe sun viewer (astroEDU), The fibre optic cable class (astroEDU)
A total of 119 events were organised during the STEM Discovery Week, by teachers, schools, organisations and the industry. All with the aim at raising awareness about STEM studies and careers. Scientix awards three teachers who organised events during this week.
Organised by: Serkan Aydogdu, Turkey.
STEM Discovery Week was celebrated as part of TPM Event Days of the ERASMUS+ and eTwinning project "Mindstorm to Brainstorm". Combining these two events became more meaningful and this STEM Discovery Event turned to be an international science festivity. The events’ week coincided with national sovereignty and children’s day of Turkey. This coincidence gave the event also a rich cultural component.
This 4th TPM event of "Mindstorm to Brainstorm" project, invited five teachers working on STEM and Robotics from Hungary, Portugal, and Romania, who joined and participated in related activities.
Moreover, for this event we got support from the following people and institutions:
- Dr. Metin Çengel:Sakarya University, Faculty of Education, Computer and Instructional Technologies Academic Member.
- Robotics Club ( Young Futurists Students Society) from Sakarya University, Faculty of Education, Computer and Instructional Technologies.
- Teachers and students from Sakarya Science and Art Center.
Organised by: Anna Savitska, Ukraine.
School conference for primary school pupils, organised by science teacher Anna Savitska, along with their primary school pupils for other primary school pupils. Students introduced their peers with STEM-study, demonstrated watering plants in fitokartyni using Arduino, monitored the microclimate in the office using RaspberryPi + ThingSpeak, taught to programme a Lego robot with a programme called S4A, Circuits, Lightbot. This event had practical training activities for students in using STEM-technology.
The event had involved students, teachers and school management, Presidents pupils' Parliament some city schools invited school pupils Parliament was attended by concerned parents of students who reported their children in the study, and other parents were able to watch online by connecting to the conference via Skype.
Organised by: Sonja Jankulovska, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.
The aim of this public event was at raising awareness among students and the wider community about the problems related to the environment, and to influence at forming lasting habits for preservation of the environment
The event included teachers, some parents, the Parent Council, public institutions and education inspectorate. Activities related to this event took place from October to April every Monday there was collective action who were informed through a statement while the ultimate final activity were informed through a poster and a placard was placed in the school building.
I wanted to inspire students to become educators of their classmates, to provide insight and participation in those aspects of the school work affecting the environment and to motivate them to become active participants in the life of the school.
Additionally, the STEM Alliance project gave an award to six teachers who organised STEM events where an industry professional was invited to a school with the help of the brand new Professionals Go Back to School Scheme.
See the STEM Alliance winners of the STEM DISCOVERY WEEK EVENTS' competition here.
Scientix launched a new book discussion on 23 April 2017, the World Book Day, in collaboration with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO). It featured eight great science books, selected by its Scientix Ambassadors. Teachers could share their ideas for classroom activities based on those books for the duration of STEM Discovery Week. Teachers posted 109 comments during this week about those books. Scientix is proud to present the authors of the three best ideas.
Author of this classroom idea: Tullia Urschitz, Italy.
I really love "The number devil book", and every year I suggest to my students to read it, as a way to make them "playing with numbers" and feel a little bit more engaged with the world of mathematics without fear.
This year I took the chance to work more on the book, with my 11 years old students and they were really very engaged.
It took one months to students reading the book. We read some chapters together at school, to prepare the "magic environment" of the book. While reading the first chapter we started getting engaged: we cut the biggest chewin-gum we found in very little parts, imagining to a cut it till the nanoscale...
Then we played with series of numbers, and we played with calculators, to find how many times we had to cut a sandwich "to reach the moon" (the sandwich was 6 cm high: each time its size was becoming half, but its height was becoming double… they had to discover how many times they needed to cut in order to reach the distance Earth-Moon).
Playing in this way, it happened that students enriched their love for our time with the book, so I proposed them to invent a game based on the book itself. We had a brainstorming and we decided to design a complete game, and its rules. We called it “The number devil game” (Il gioco del Mago dei Numeri) and we agreed that every student had to prepare 5 exercises to put in the game, in order to repeat all the mathematical contents they studied from the beginning of the school year!
How to play
Put in the middle of the board the two decks of inspiration and wizard cards.
Put the pawns on the start box. Every player throw the dices: the first one is that who have the highest score.
Every time you reach a game box (except when you reach a nightmare or an inspiration box) you have to take a “wizard card”. “Roberto”, the player, has the time of one turn of the hourglass to answer the wizard question. If the answer is correct, he wins a piece of star. (Nothing in case he fails, or the time is over).
Something bad happens if the player arrives in one of the 4 “nightmare boxes”:
- “Lo scivolo infinito” (the infinite chute): throw the dice and go back of the number of boxes showed on the dice
- “Il professor Mandibola” (Professor Jaw): stop for a round
- “Il pesce incantato” (the enchanted fish): go one box back
- “La bicicletta” (the bicycle): go back to the start box
There are other 4 special boxes: the inspiration boxes, that allow you to collect a "inspiration card", useful to to cancel nightmare effects.
Aim of the game
Aim of the game is completing a round of the board AND completing the star puzzle.
Author of this classroom idea: Mladen Sljivovic, Serbia.
Preparing students for final exams can be hard and challenging. Most of them are already motivated as final exam is a way of entering college. Recent changes in Serbia’s education defined standards for education for science subjects such as chemistry, physics, biology… However, most teachers still haven’t adopted new ways in their educational methods to help students fully prepare for what awaits them.
Ender’s game RPG can be use as fun way to discuss new ideas and test your students at same time. It also helps in motivating students.
At the start, students are being introduced to a book written by Orson Scott. Teacher says a few words about book and author and then he announces that he will read a part of a book then ask a few questions. At one point he will organize his class in to groups who will compete at certain tasks.FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CLASSPART 1Teacher reads a part of a book. Class is asked not to take any notes and to just listen. "Andrew, I suppose by now you're just absolutely sick of having that horrid monitor. Well, I have good news for you. That monitor is going to come out today. We're going to just take it right out, andit won't hurt a bit."Ender nodded. It was a lie, of course, that it wouldn't hurt a bit. But since adults always said it when it was going to hurt, he could count on that statement as an accurate prediction of the future. Sometimes lies were more dependable than the truth.The doctor was twisting something at the back of Ender's head. Suddenly a pain stabbed through him like a needle from his neck to his groin. Ender felt his back spasm, and his body arched violently backward; hi head struck the bed. He could feel his legs thrashing, and his hands were clenching each other, wringing each other so tightly that they ached.Teacher now gives assignments.
(For teachers: First set of question is based on correlation between physics and biology, this can be used in every class as all questions are based on school curriculum for physics)
In this section Ender had his monitor removed. Monitor is a device surgically insert in children and used to follow them and record everything they see and hear. In next few task we will concentrate on such, still imaginary at this time, object.TEACHER CAN CHANGE QUESTIONS AS THEY THINK IT WOULD BE MORE SUITABLE FOR CLASS. I have only given examples of few.Q1Suppose that we can look at signals going true human nerves as one-way electric current. This current is in form of signal with magnitude of 75mV. An electric current needed to be detected is in order of 10e-12 A. How much resistance can monitor have in order to achieve this current? Q2In order to work monitor has to have power source. In this case specially designed source is used and it has been labeled with following 0.5kAh 2V. If maximum current it use is 1E-3 A how many hour can it last before it need to be replaced? If Ender is six at present and monitor has been inserted at his birth will battery last or will it have to be replaced at some time?Q3Thru monitor has ability to record everything Ender see. On this chart (shown at board) we can see sensitivity of human eye to different wavelengths at night and at day. At what wavelength human eye is most sensitive at day? Bonus calculate the frequency of that wavelength.Q4To give Ender even less privacy monitor has ability to record everything he hears. Considering that human can hear from sounds from 20Hz to 20000 Hz (more or less) what is the minimum wavelength of sound monitor can record?BONUS (for those who like to discus ethics as well as science)
Now class can be free to discuss about ethics of using monitors. After they set their opinions explain to them that in this world humans are often attacked by other humans and monitor can be use to protect children. Read them the part right after Ender had his monitor removed.His monitor wasn't perched on his neck, hearing what heard and seeing what he saw. They could say what they liked. They might even hit him now-- no one could see anymore, and so no one would come to Ender's rescue. There were advantages to the monitor, and he would miss them. It was Stilson, of course. He wasn't bigger than most other kids, but he was bigger than Ender. And he had some others with him. He always did. "Hey, Third." Don't answer. Nothing to say. "Hey, Third, we're talkin to you, Third, hey bugger-lover, we're talkin to you." Can't think of anything to answer. Anything I say will make it worse. So will saying nothing."Hey, Third, hey, turd, you flunked out, huh? Thought you were better than us, but you lost your little birdie, Thirdie, got a bandaid on your neck." "Are you going to let me through?" Ender asked. "Are we going to let him through? Should we let him through?" They all laughed. "Sure we'll let you through. First we'll let your arm through, then your butt through, then maybe a piece of your knee." Discus with class now about using monitors. Explain to them that in this future world an alien race of insects attacked humans and now after many years people have changed society rules in other to create better soldiers. Ask if they knew any other way technology changed society.PART 2 This part is again based on same scenarios. Teacher reads a part of book and then asks a question based on that. (For teachers: this part is set on gravity and free fall. It will also be used to check how well did students understood First Newton’s law, as well how well do they read charts) In this part we will find that Ender is on his way to Battle school. Him and other boys are currently on space shuttle waiting for launch…The other boys were belted in place, those who hadn't done as Ender did. Then they waited for an hour while a TV at the front of the shuttle introduced them to shuttle flight, the history of space flight, and their possible future with the great starships of the IF. Very boring stuff. Ender had seen such films before. Except that he had not been belted into a seat inside the shuttle. Hanging upside down from the belly of Earth. The launch wasn't bad. A little scary. Some jolting, a few moments of panic that this might be the first failed launch in the history of the shuttle. The movies hadn't made it plain how much violence you could experience, lying on your back in a soft chair. Then it was over, and he really was hanging by the straps, no gravity anywhere.
Q1: When launching a spaceship in order to get speed shuttle will accelerate with rate of 10m/s2 . During the launch will mass of Ender be
- Twice as normal
- None of the above
Q2: Mass has not changed but weight (amount of force he is pushing his seat) did. How did weight changed
- Twice as normal
- None of the above
Q3: "Most of you are going to ice out. Get used to that, little boys. Most of you are going to end up in Combat School, because you don't have the brains to handle deep-space piloting. Most of you aren't worth the price of bringing you up here to Battle School because you don't have what it takes. Some of you might make it. Some of you might be worth something to humanity. But don't bet on it. I'm betting on only one."
Suddenly Graff did a backflip and caught the ladder with his hands, then swung his feet away from the ladder. Doing a handstand, if the floor was down. Dangling by his hands, if the floor was up. Hand over hand he swung himself back along the aisle to his seat.
"Looks like you've got it made here," whispered the boy next to him.
Ender shook his head.
"Oh, won't even talk to me?" the boy said.
"I didn't ask him to say that stuff," Ender whispered. He felt a sharp pain on the top of his head. Then again. Some giggles from behind him. The boy in the next seat back must have unfastened his straps. Again a blow to the head. Go away, Ender thought. I didn't do anything to you.
Again a blow to the head. Laughter from the boys. Didn't Graff see this? Wasn't he going to stop it? Another blow. Harder. It really hurt. Where was Graff?
Then it became clear. Graff had deliberately caused it. It was worse than the abuse in the shows. When the sergeant picked on you, the others liked you better. But when the officer prefers you, the others hate you.
"Hey, fart-eater," came the whisper from behind him. He was hit in the head again. "Do you like this? Hey, super-brain, this is fun?" Another blow, this one so hard that Ender cried out softly with the pain.
While being atacked by other students Ender had to defend himself. At one point he grabed a boy who was about to hit him and trow him with all force. Since there was no gravity boy flew with high sped and broke his arm. Next couple of question we will use to duscuss a non weight state.
Q4: While on Earth gravity surround us. We are used to it. However, people do want to feel weightless state. Imagine we are standing in giant elevator. In which way and by how much would he need to accelerate in order for us to feel weightless state
Q5: In Q4 we had not very safe way to experience zero gravity. Here is a safer. Now imagine a plane who orbiting around Earth at 10km. How fast does it have to go in order for us to feel zero gravity?
Q6: It would be cool to have such a fast plane, but for now we have to use something called parabolic flights. Here are some videos of what happens in such a plane, and here is trajectory of one plain. Can you explain how does parabolic flights work?
Q7: Now we are off to space. However, gravity is still following us, weaker yes but not at zero. Given mass of Earth, her radius and gravitational constant can you calculate free fall acceleration at height equivalent to Earth’s radius?
Q8: Suppose alien race leave on planet which is twice the size of earth and has 3 times bigger mass. Would gravity for them:
- depends on their mass
Q9: Ender is only six but on Earth he can use his muscles to throw a rock weighting 5kg. If he uses same force on boy that attack him what acceleration will other boy have if he has a mass of 40kg.
Q10: Draw a graph describing change of speed if a rock is thrown with 10m/s in downward direction on Earth. Disregard air resistance
Q11: Draw a graph describing change of speed if a rock is thrown with 10m/s in any direction at zero gravity. Disregard air resistance.
Q12: In real life we cannot disregard air resistance. Which of this graph describes speed over time of a ball falling on earth? (teacher has to prepare this in advance)
Q13: If we were to consider air resistance in zero gravity would terminal velocity of a ball (speed after very long time) be greater in zero gravity or on Earth? Which of this graph describes speed over time of a ball falling in zero gravity?
Same as before teacher reads from a book. He has to explain that now we are watching Ender as he is trained to be a soldier in specially designed arena with zero gravity.
Ender is now training to be a soldier. We will now listen about two of his newly discovered things.
Ender took his pistol and demonstrated what he had learned about the two thumb buttons. "What does it do when you aim at a person?" asked Alai. "I don't know." "Why don't we find out?" Ender shook his head. "We might hurt somebody." "I meant why don't we shoot each other in the foot or something. I'm not Bernard, I never tortured cats for fun." "Oh." "It can't be too dangerous, or they wouldn't give these guns to kids." "We're soldiers now." "Shoot me in the foot." "No, you shoot me." "Let's shoot each other." They did. Immediately Ender felt the leg of the suit grow stiff, immobile at the knee and ankle joints.
Petra was waiting in the corridor that led to the battleroom.
"Wait a minute," she said to Ender. "Rabbit Army just went in, and it takes a few minutes to change to the next battleroom."
Ender sat down beside her.
"There's more to the battleroom than just switching from one to the next," he said. "For instance, why is there gravity in the corridor outside the room, just before we go in?"
As we can see Ender’s light suit is made to show where he has been hit. All the battles between armies will be held at battleroom. Let’s talk about this room and about pistols use for this game.
Q1: As we all know gravity is important for human body to function normally. Many astronauts have been known to have medical issues after a long period at zero G. Imagine all the normal functions you would not be able to do with no gravity and describe them.
Q2: One way to create gravity is to rotate space ship. Imagine if space station, in which Ender is currently living, is about 2km in diameter. With what angular speed it should rotate to create acceleration equal to one G?
Q3: As we move to center of this space station does this artificially created gravity raises or decreases?
Q4: Now we shall take a look at Ender’s pistol. When part of light suit is hit it freezes. Suppose that pistol use light as a way to signalize this. If Ender shoot at his target 500m away , and as a result of hit bell rungs, how much time will pass until Ender hear the sound?
Q5: To freeze suit signal has to be of minimum intensity I. Once it leaves pistol signal has 2cm in dimeter and is spreading 1mm every 50 meters. Calculate maximum distance Ender can shoot at his target given that signal has intensity 2P at start. How much would distance change if intensity at start would be 4I?
Q6: Space shis is moving in zero gravity with constant speed. At point A space ship is turning on his rockets . Which of folowing trajectories is posible?
At this point teacher reads from book about ender becoming a comander of his own army.
At the end of the week Dragon Army had fought seven battles in seven days. The score stood 7 wins and 0 losses. Ender had never had more losses than in the battle with Phoenix Army, and in two battles he had suffered not one soldier frozen or disabled. No one believed anymore that it was a fluke that put him first in the standings. He had beaten top armies by unheard-of margins. It was no longer possible for the other commanders to ignore him. A few of them sat with him at every meal, carefully trying to learn from him how he had defeated his most recent opponents. He told them freely, confident that few of them would know how to train their soldiers and their toon leaders to duplicate what his could do. And while Ender talked with a few commanders, much larger groups gathered around the opponents Ender had defeated, trying to find out how Ender might be beaten. There were many who who hated him. Hated him for being young, for being excellent, for having made their victories look paltry and weak
Now teacher divides hiss class in to 4 to 5 studnets army. number of armies depends form siye of class. it should ne boticed here that when working in pairs it has been proven that best practice is to team up more advance studnets with less advanced one. That way learning expirience has highest eficiency. EACH ARMY MEMBER HAS A NUMBER FROM 1 to 5.
Teacher explains to them that now each army has a homwork. Comanders have to give task to their soldiers to create as much questions as possible. All question have to be from class program, and in form of test questions. In next seasion armies will be set to pairs and compete with thees rules.
SECOND ENCOUNTER WITH CLASS
Game is played. At this time teacher monitors and looks what parts of subjects his students did not understand... As a help teacher can provide to his students test from final exams, PISA, and one more of mz favorite books PEAR TEACHING by Eric Mazur.
- First army asks a question. memebers of opiste team answer in order from 1 to 5
- Person who was asked has a right to consulate with his teammates and then answers. LEader of a team has a right to choose to answer a question himself and save his team member but before consultations.
- If answer is corect team wins 2 points, if consulted only 1.
- If team answers wrongly first army has to explain answer . In case that they fail to do so first army looses 2 points.
- Proces is repeated for second army after which round is over.
- Rounds are reapting untill by the end of round one team has 10 points. in case both team have 10 points game is countinued untill one team by the end of round has one point more then opposite.
- At each time team can call for teacher as judge.
- Teacher can give one negative point to team if he judges that question was unfair or passes over class level (For example teams gives a problem from state championship in physics which is considered as faul play)
Author of this classroom idea: Konstantinos Manolakis, Greece.
As I was reading the Parrot’s Theorem, I tried to think up ways of how this book could have pedagogical use as a whole. Additionally, I wanted the whole of the educational community (students, teachers, parents) to become involved in this process, in this way suggesting an alternative approach to the science of Mathematics. In primary school, Math is taught by conveying concepts such as those of numbers, calculations (algorithms), problem solving, geometric issues, etc. as well as any symbols or mental tools we utilize, all these are readily accepted as a fact, “sent from heaven”; we rarely concern ourselves or investigate the origin of their use. We very often ignore the fact that behind these ideas are people who initially introduced them to the field of Mathematics. The editor of the Greek translation of the book, Tefkros Michaelides, very aptly points out: “… the history of mathematics is an inspiration of ideas, problems, devises. It is, however, most importantly a story about people. Enlightened individuals, who through the mist, were able to distinguish the opposite bank and slowly find the passage that led them there” (pg. 709).Moreover, at some point, a heroine of the novel, Lea, surprised by the absence of the equals symbol before 1557, wonders: “Someone was forced to die on the other side of the world when trying to uncover and ascertain where this symbol originated. Why has nobody ever told us these things in the classroom?” Based on all of this, my personal idea is to try and include the history of mathematics in a collaborative project that will run throughout the school year and involve all the grades of the primary school. Amelion- Mamagena, the Amazonian parrot, can become the mascot that will inspire the children, teachers, parents and anyone else who is interested in creating the historical line of mathematics, by exhibiting and bring forward the people who were behind the ideas and symbols. This historical line will be a specially shaped belt that will run through the corridors of the school and will begin from ancient times- all the way to our era. Each class, depending on the chosen subject they will assume, will look into and try to solve a riddle (through some research) within Denis Geudj’s book. For example: Why are fractions considered broken figures? “Al-Khwarizmi accepts only positive, inertial (whole) or fractional numbers. This is where the word ‘fractions’ was coined. The Latin word fractiones is the translation of the Arabic kasser, do you know what kasser means? It means broken! Thus, fractions are broken numbers!” (pg. 309) So, with fractions as a triggering topic the historical line will be enriched with the Arabic contribution to the propagation and development of mathematics. Another example is through teaching the maximum common divisor/ highest common factor: Which numbers are friendly according to Pythagoras? “When he was asked what a friend is, he answered “he who is your other self, such as the numbers 220 and 284”. Two numbers are “friends” or “friendly with each other” when the sum of the numbers that divide the one number equal the sum of the second number (therefore divide).” And so on the occasion of the divisors the reference to Pythagoras will offer new learning possibilities. Depending on the age and the potential of the students, the historical line will have its own dynamic. The young students will create the mascot of the project, the parrot who “knows” math and therefore, the students will be given the opportunity to understand the difference between “holding” knowledge and merely “parroting” that knowledge. The older students will partake in researching and enriching the historical line. Teachers will guide and motivate the students by providing stimuli for exploratory- research learning. Parents will also be able to contribute according to their interests as guests in projects or presentations while working with their children. Finally, the result will be multimodal (text, images, and symbols) collective work and there will be a personal touch from all the participants. It will unite the lessons of mathematics, history and literature! It would also be highly beneficial to collaborate with other schools, even with older children in high schools and lyceums, through the digital advancement of the historical line. Tools that would be helpful in this endeavor are (thehistoryproject.com, timeglider.com, padlet.com etc.)
Guedj, D. (2010), The Parrot’s Theorem, Kedros (greek edition)
STEM Discovery Week IN NUMBERS
This infograph demonstrates the main achievements accomplished and outreach during STEM Discovery Week 2017.
‘MAKE YOUR OWN POSTER’
‘Make your own Poster’ with your favourite subjects and resources from the Scientix Resources Respository. Read more.
‘ORGANISE A STEM EVENT’
Organise or participate in an event dedicated to any STEM subject and opportunities from 24 to 30 April 2017. Read more.
‘YOUR FAVOURITE SCIENCE BOOK’
Share ideas for classroom activities in relation to selected science books and discuss them in an open forum. Read more.