Science Week – an ‘explosion’ of discovery for Star pupils
Pupils at Star Academies’ schools celebrated British Science Week with a fun-filled week of exciting investigation and discovery.
From designing their own artificial intelligence robots and going on a virtual mission to Mars, to learning about the development of the COVID-19 vaccine and celebrating the work of pioneering women in science, pupils were encouraged to develop their love of science through a range of inspiring activities.
Star’s pupils are also putting their scientific knowledge to the test in a special Trust-wide competition designed to unite pupils in their celebration of science.
Thousands of pupils across the Trust’s primary and secondary schools are creating mini ecosystems and strategies to consider real world environmental problems as part of the Star Innovator Challenges.
The challenges, which are open to all pupils who attend a Star Academies school, aim to encourage pupils to think innovatively about the world and how science and technology could help to improve the quality of life for future generations.
Younger pupils, in Reception and Key Stage 1, are investigating ecosystems though the Detective Glow Worm challenge. Pupils will discover the importance of ecosystems by exploring the interactions between organisms and using this information to create a mini bug world, model or story.
Key Stage 2 pupils are taking part in a Wildlife Wonderland challenge where they will learn about the life that exists at the bottom of our gardens and green spaces, and discover the importance of our diverse ecosystem in supporting life on the planet. Pupils will have the opportunity to create a mini ecosystem, bug hotel or bug model to share their exciting discoveries.
Pupils in Key Stage 3 and 4 are taking part in the Emission Eraser project, which challenges pupils to investigate the cost of human impact on the planet and within their local community. Pupils will create a strategy that considers real world environmental problems and investigate how science and technology can improve the quality of life for future generations. Pupils are able to use any format including models, presentations and videos to demonstrate their findings.
Schools will shortlist two finalists in each of the four categories (Reception and KS1, KS2, KS3 and KS4). The finalists will then be submitted to the Trust for judging in the national final. The top three entries in each age category will be awarded a prize.
Dr Richard Barker, an eminent astrobiologist, who works with NASA exploring methods of cultivating plants in space, will be using his expertise to help judge entries. During British Science Week, a video of Dr Barker was also shared with schools in which he discussed his work and his role with NASA, and answered questions from pupils.
During British Science Week, Professor Asif Muneer (consultant urological surgeon and andrologist and clinical lead for urology at University College Hospitals London) spoke to secondary pupils about his preeminent career in science, including his education which saw him study at University College London and Oxford University, as well as visiting fellowships to the University of Bern and University of Paris.
(Mufti) Hamid Patel CBE, Chief Executive of Star Academies, described the competition as an opportunity for pupils to develop their interest in important scientific concepts learnt in the classroom and apply them to real-life scenarios.
He said: “Our teachers and staff work exceptionally hard to deliver an inspiring knowledge-rich curriculum and a wide range of extracurricular activities to stimulate pupils’ interest in science.
“We believe that by offering our pupils these opportunities, we are helping to ignite the spark that fuels the passion and drive necessary to succeed at the highest levels of education and employment.
“By expanding pupils’ learning beyond the boundaries of the core curriculum, we hope to inspire them to join the ranks of this country’s most successful leaders and innovators.”
Winners of the Star Innovator Challenges will be announced in May.
Added By: Star Academies | Date Added: 11th Mar 2021 | Posted In: Latest News