Science exploration at ULS primary schools

The University of Newcastle visited Crookwell Public School and Binda Public School last week to deliver a Science, Maths and Real Technology (SMART) shows to students.

Students in Years 3 to 6 at Crookwell Public School and Taralga Public School formed the morning session.

Education: Primary school students participate in science workshops at local schools. Photo supplied.

Education: Primary school students participate in science workshops at local schools. Photo supplied.

Then, all of the students from Binda, Bigga and Laggan Public Schools participated in the afternoon session at Binda Public School.

The SMART shows followed the success of the Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) Showcase held two weeks ago where students presented their solutions to real-world problems faced by farmers.

On Wednesday, November 29 students sat back and enjoyed the marvels of science.

The first show, ‘SMARTBots’, introduced key coding and robotics concepts, that use a range of engaging pre-programmed and on-command robots.

This included a dancing robot, to a robot that could solve a rubik’s cube in less than 2 minutes.

The second show, ‘Future Earth - Sustainability Science Show’, explored the concepts of sustainability, resource conservation, recycling, power generation and energy efficiency.

Shelley Wilson, SMART team leader, emphasised to students that we only have one earth and it is vital we look after it.

Students have been learning about wind and solar technology for the past two terms and have also recently visited local wind farms.

The show was particularly relevant for students at Taralga Public School, who have been working on developing eco-friendly, sustainable housing models.

Students learned about solar cars, alternatives to plastic and how wind power is generated.

The shows were interactive, with a number of students asked onto the stage to help the presenters with their experiments and demonstrations.

Project officer at RDA Southern Inland, Camilla Staff, helped to coordinate the event and was delighted to see the primary school students so excited.

“The students were so engaged and involved during both shows, it was great to see.

“Both shows explored really important concepts and topics for the future.

“I hope it has inspired some students to not only study STEM subjects in high school, but also to consider a career in a STEM field,” Ms Staff said.

The event was run by The University of Newcastle, with support from RDA Southern Inland.

The event was run as part of a pilot program funded by the NSW Department of Education, which aims to provide students with age appropriate STEM skills.