Primary Education

European Science on Stage festivals

Description: 

Every two years, Science on Stage organises Europes biggest educational festival from and for STEM teachers. Each time hosted by a different country, the event brings together up to 450 STEM teachers from over 30 countries to share and exchange their ideas and concepts for a successful science education from primary to secondary school.

 

Every participant presents his or her good-practice teaching examples to their international colleagues at stands, in workshops and in on-stage-presentations. Following the principle 'from teachers for teachers' the festival supports the professional development of the educators. Furthermore the most innovative best-practice teaching concepts find their way to teacher trainings, brochures and teaching materials after the event.

Teachers are competitively selected to be part of their country’s delegation through rigorous application processes and national events.

 

The next European Science on Stage festival takes place from 31 October to 3 November 2019 at the Estoril Congress Center in Cascais, Portugal. 

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Organisation: 
Science on Stage Europe
Impact: 

The impact of our work can be measured by the personal benefit the teachers get through participating in our European Science on Stage festival. The results of the evaluation of the festivals demonstrate that the exchange of teachers has a positive effect on the motivation and joy in the profession. Indeed, participating teachers find many inspiring ideas for their STEM lessons and actually incorporate them practically in their own classrooms. However, the teachers do not only appreciate the exchange of inspiring ideas, but also the possibility to gain and maintain contacts made on an international basis. The improvement of science teaching and thus the promotion of students to consider a career in science, ICT and engineering, can be a good way to counteract the skilled worker shortage in these areas. (see Evaluation report)

Reach: 

The festival brings together up to 450 STEM teachers from over 30 countries to share and exchange their ideas and concepts for a successful science education from primary to secondary school. These festivals are the peak of our work – they constitute a gateway for national follow-up activities of each individual Science on Stage country. Through the festivals, newly acquired concepts find their way to teacher trainings, brochures and teaching materials in every participating country. In this way we reach more than 100,000 STEM teachers across Europe.

Budget and funding model: 

The European Science on Stage festivals are funded through private companies and foundations, municipalities, cooperation with universities and other STEM initiatives. The host country/National Steering Committee that organises the European festival is responsible for fundraising, supported by the umbrella organisation Science on Stage Europe e.V.

Coding Summer School

Description: 

Coding Summer School is an intensive week-long event that immerses primary- and secondary age students in the world of coding and app development. The hands-on programme is taught by industry professionals and organised by ThinkYoung in cooperation with Boeing. By giving students a week-long immersive experience that culminates in students creating their own app, the programme aims to enthuse students for STEM subjects and kick-start their education in this field.

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Organisation: 
ThinkYoung
Impact: 

While the current education systems usually leave little room for experimentation, innovative approaches in non-formal education settings can provide useful evidence about what works and what doesn’t. In this sense showcasing good practice examples from non-formal education initiatives provides policy makers with unique insights that can inform policy design and implementation. This impact can be felt in the interest from the Estonian Presidency to join the 2017 Coding school along with education ministers from the 28 member states in order to share best practises in innovative ways of educating. This involvement will serve as a base for the European Council’s upcoming discussions on the future of Education in the European sphere. Initiatives such as the Boeing & ThinkYoung Coding Summer School can be invaluable to policy makers as an instrument to steer the debate.

Reach: 

The goal of this initiative is to foster the interest of STEM skills and kick-start education in this field for young people, with a specific focus on the gender gap in STEM. In the 2 editions run of the Coding Summer School roughly 200 kids between the ages of 11 and 17 have been trained. With 70% of females targeted and reached.

Budget and funding model: 

Coding Summer School is an initiative of Boeing.

Quote data pages: 

In the 2017 edition of ThinkYoung and Boeing's Coding Summer School, 70% of the students that enrolled in the programme were girls. 

StarT Finland

Description: 

StarT is the flagship programme of the LUMA Centre Finland (Finnish STEM platform). Launched in 2016, the programme's main objective is to bring science, mathematics and technology closer to children and youngsters through interdisciplinary, project-based collaborative learning. The programme is implemented by LUMA Centre Finland (network between 13 regional STEM education centre within Finnish universities) through 'learning communities', supported by collaboration partners including the Finnish National Agency for Education and companies in the field of science and technology like IBM.

 

The StarT programme is implemented on three levels:|
 

  1. Local level: kindergartens, primary schools, high schools, and extracurricular activity groups participating in StarT
     
  2. Regional level: StarT festivals organized all around Finland by the LUMA centers together with local partners (does not apply to non-Finnish participants)
     
  3. National / International level: the LUMA Centre Finland organizes the StarT Gala, where teams chosen by the StarT jury – also non-Finnish teams – are awarded
     

In these levels, the StarT programme supports project-based learning in the local learning communities, StarT festivals and a national/international StarT gala.

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Organisation: 
LUMA
Impact: 

The overall feedback has been excellent. For example, in relation to a math related learning project teachers noted that: “Children have learned to create their own ideas, to solve problems in a team, work together to overcome difficulties, associate the amount of things with numbers, improved perception of time and counting skills. During the festival they developed not only mathematical skills, but also improved their social skills.” In school year 2016-2017 support material was sent through the StarT newsletter to 500 learning communities in Finland. There were ca. 10 000 participants (kids/youth/teachers/educators) in StarT learning communities, ca. 1000 participants in regional StarT festivals and ca. 400 participant in national/international StarT Gala.

Reach: 

In the 2016-2017 school year, the StarT programme supported 400 learning communities from Finland and 350 learning communities from abroad with participants from 36 countries. 

Budget and funding model: 

StarT learning projects are carried out in learning communities like day care centres, kindergartens, schools etc. around the country and funded by themselves. Regional and national StarT marketing as well as the regional StarT festivals and national/international StarT Gala are funded by the Finnish universities and the sponsoring companies.

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