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#SonS2017 Follow-up: Swiss-German Teacher Exchange

At the European Science on Stage festival 2017 in Debrecen, Hungary Dieter Schmidt, teacher delegate of Science on Stage Germany met Reto and Felix Speerli, two teachers of the team Science on Stage Switzerland. After the event they decided to do a teacher exchange. From 30 March to 4 April 2018 Dieter Schmidt went to see his Swiss colleagues at the Obersee Bilingual School in Pfäffikon. Purpose of the exchange was to merge the Swiss IKARUS project (European STEM Teacher Award 2017) that teaches basic space-science to primary school students and the experiences of Dieter Schmidt who participated with his 9th graders in the German CanSat-contest 2017 that designed an Arduino-based mini-satellite which collected weather- and climate-data. 

Before the visit of Dieter Schmidt Reto Speerli began a coding class with his 6th graders at the beginning of this school year. The students used Scratch and the Picoboard and built their weather station with analog sensors. These they presented to the German teacher who in turn introduced them to Arduino and electric circuits. The knowledge of the Swiss students was now supposed to be transferred to the Arduino-environment and the scratch-like programm 'mBlock' to code their own weather-balloon-projects.

Reto Speerli will travel to Oyten in autumn and show the German students how to construct a weather balloon.

ROBOLAND 2018: Michalis Orfanakis in Kazakhstan

From 29-31 March 2018, the 4th international festival of robotics, programming and innovative technologies 'ROBOLAND 2018' was held in Karaganda, Kazakhstan. It is the biggest festival of its kind in the country and one of the most important in Asia with more than 1,600 participants taking part in around 40 competition categories.

Physics teacher Michalis Orfanakis, teacher delegate of Science on Stage Greece at the European Science on Stage festival 2017 and winner of the 'European STEM Teacher Award' last year was invited to participate in the round table discussion on the guiding theme 'Digital Transformation of Education: The Competence of the Future'. At the round table he was accompanied by representatives of the educational authorities of Karaganda, representatives of educational institutions and universities, representatives of major educational robotic companies and by teachers that got highly awarded in their countries for special performances. 

At the festival Michalis presented the topic 'Transforming the traditional school science laboratory into an STEM Lab' to his Kazakh colleagues. Moreover, he took the opportunity to visit one of the biggest schools of Karaganda, to talk with representatives from educational institutions and schools and exchange views and ideas on educational issues.

He also represented Science on Stage Europe and introduced the participants to the networks' activities and teaching ressources.

Since March 2018 Science on Stage Kazakhstan is the youngest member of Science on Stage Europe.

Find the award winning project of Michalis Orfanakis here for download Tomography in school – Optical CT Scanner with Lego and Arduino.


#SonS2017 Follow-up: German-Dutch Teacher Exchange

Mira Büllesbach, Stephanie Cremer and Bert Nagel met as teacher delegates from Science on Stage Germany and Science on Stage Netherlands at the European Science on Stage festival 2017 in Debrecen, Hungary. There they decided to develop a project together under the topic 'How food passes through human body - students learn to build and use models around the digestive system'.

In March 2018 Mira and Stephanie went to see Bert in Lelystad, Netherlands to develop their ideas. The project will introduce primary school students to the secrets under the skin, making them think about what is going on in their body and helping them to work together and to use language for the processes they discover. The students will create a basic model on the digestive system and improve it step by step. During that the teacher will be a mentor to the students, inspire them to come up with questions, to design experiments in order to get answers to their questions and thereby learn more about the digestive system. The project is designed to be inclusive: All children can join the project and learn together because it works autonomously from cognition, culture or language.

We are very much excited to hear more from this German-Dutch project!

Part two: Teacher Exchange on GeoQuest

This January Sabina Maraffi, teacher delegate from Science on Stagy Italy, went to see Ásdís Ingólfsdóttir, teacher delegate from Science on Stage Iceland. Both teachers met at the European festival 2017 in Debrecen, Hungary, where they decided to do a teacher exchange and develop a new project together which combines the idea of Sabina to use computer games in STEM classes and to do research on geology and geography.

For further developing the GeoQuest project Ásdís now travelled to Italy where she visited Sabina at the Liceo Galileo Galilei in Naples. This time the Italian students experienced the GeoQuest project, based on a Computer Class Role Playing Game, that Sabina Maraffi presented at Debrecen. The game consists of several interdisciplinary science adventures, to improve STEM education and foster science learning. The pathway’s topic chosen for Italian students was GeoQuest Iceland, to strengthen the exchange through the knowledge of the natural, historical and cultural features of the participating countries.

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