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STEM Projects - Primary Science Leaders
‘Think Universe… All is One’
Introduction and Aim
‘Think Universe - All is One’ has been running as part of the extended curriculum in Years 5-6 in a number of primary schools in London since 2013. This 12 week programme aims to prepare Year 6 students for science education before their transition to secondary school. It reinforces the Year 6 National Curriculum in advanced real life concepts in order to develop the students’ thinking in all sciences and gives the students valuable tools and knowledge to be applied in more detail at a later stage in their education.
Children come out motivated to do their own thinking and independent research, developing self-investigatory quality in their education, with enhanced ability to enquire and formulate their own relevant questions.
‘Think Universe - All is One’ was funded by the Royal Society in 2012 and was recognised as the UK Highest Commended Project in the European Science Committee in 2015 European ‘Science On Stage’ in London. It has been supported by the British Council and STEM organisations in both academic and professional fields. It has been developed and run by experts in Physics and Astronomy from UCL, Lecturer and Senior Fellow of the Astrophysics department, Dr Francisco Diego, and Shirin Sheikh-Bahai from the Science Education Research department at the UCL Institute of Education; Science Education Leader in the Harris Federation Primary phase and Teacher Education.
For more information please visit https://www.ucl.ac.uk/think-universe
Astronomy Club is a programme for KS2 pupils to learn about Space Science (Astronomy) and Space technology. It was founded and introduced by Shirin Sheikh-Bahai as an afterschool club for Upper KS2 students in primary schools. Astronomy club was partly funded by the Institute of Physics, recognised by the Rolls Royce Prize, selected by the Schools Best Practice prior to being published by the Cambridge Education as a Handbook for teachers. Some of the activities of this project have been created in collaborations with NASA specialists at the educational centre of the Kennedy Space Centre in the USA.
Astronomy Club contains theoretical and practical outcomes in each unit, and contains the following modules:
- Introducing Astronomy and Space science
- Planets and their satellites
- Our planet and environment - Project
- Stars and constellations
- Meteorites and asteroids
- Space Technology (Rockets, ISS, Hovercraft)
- Extra Terrestrial life- project
- Scientists and theories- project
- Pupils’ Workshop/presentation to the whole school
- Outreach activity: National Space Centre in Leicester
- Outreach activity: UCL annual Festival of Astronomy - ‘Your Universe’
- Outreach activity: International Space School Trust (ISSET), Kings College
This project aims to achieve the following goals:
- To enthuse pupils in learning physics-based subjects.
- To increase the knowledge and experience of pupils in physical studies and its applications.
- To explore the world around us.
- To generate higher order thinking and creativity.
- To develop scientific skills and communication.
- To motivate pupils and parents for further STEM studies.
- To raise the profile of science education at primary schools.
- To create outreach opportunities for specialists and experts.
- To expand collaborations between academic organisations and schools.