4 March 2019

The ASP shared a platform with experts in the field of primary science education at a recent workshop hosted by the education team at the Mary Rose Museum in Portsmouth.

Entitled 'Putting Science Centre Stage', the workshop was aimed at primary school science co-ordinators, largely from Hampshire but also including one of our partner schools, St Edmund's in Abingdon. The key note speaker was Prof Janice Griffiths, Director of the Science and Maths Learning Centre at the University of Southampton and Chair-elect of the Association for Science Education.

She highlighted some of the issues caused by the lack of people qualified to work in the STEM sector in the UK and the effects of a lack of general scientific knowledge in decision making in society.

Evidence is growing of the importance of embedding the concept of Science Capital in teaching and learning from an early age. This includes increasing engagement with scientific issues as well as the understanding of scientific methods and evidence amongst everyone in the population, not just scientists.

Another interesting aspect of the workshop was the similarity of enquiry methods and analysis of evidence in both history and science, illustrated through a cross-curricular approach to working out the purpose of mystery Tudor artefacts found in the wreck of the Mary Rose.

In the afternoon, the primary teachers tried out various hands-on science activities, including the ASP's contribution, demonstrating schools resources offered by our partner the Practical Action development charity.

Feedback from the participants was very enthusiastic with several commenting that they would be implementing the ideas they had encountered in the curriculum at their own schools, particularly cross-curricular themes and alternative ways of incorporating STEM activities at primary level.

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