This week the Wellcome Trust launched the report of the first Science Education Tracker (SET), a survey of “young people’s attitudes and experiences of science education and careers”. The 2016 SET was commissioned by Wellcome and carried out by Kantar Public with support from the Royal Society, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Department for Education.
The survey is based on a “nationally representative sample of 4,081 young people aged 14-18 in education in state-funded schools in England”, and looks to map young people’s engagement and attitudes toward science education and careers to better inform policy, education and public engagement.
The key findings of the 2016 SET include:
- 68% of young people found science lessons at school “very interesting or fairly interesting”
- 43% of young people were “very or fairly interested in a science-related career”
- 35% of young people said “having a good teacher” had encouraged them to learn science
- 29% of GCSE students reported doing practical science less than once a month
- 28% of young people wanted to do STEM-related work experience but were unable to
Using our Labdisc you have a Science Lab in the palm of your hand. The device has built in sensors and external sensors. They cover general science, physics, biology and chemistry and environment. The devices link to a free software app and can be used with Apple IOS, iPad, Android, Windows, Linux and Chromebooks. Using these devices would mean that the 29% of the young people surveyed in the report who only managed one experiment a month would have regular access to a device which they can carry out experiments with.
Find out more here
I am not usually a fan of annual events as it seems that all the focus is placed on the one day and then we put the knowledge gained on that day away for another twelve months. Online safety for our young people is more than simply a one day event. I often worry when I go into schools to deliver online safety that the young people are attentive for that session and then the points made are ignored again until the “e-safety man” visits the school again. We know as teachers that we need to keep revisiting learning and make sure that our learning objectives are secure and over time we achieve this and the person moves on in their learning. The same should be done with online safety teaching. We should embed the message into our curriculum it should be mentioned each day and in each key stage and classroom. We should seek out opportunities to push home the message about being responsible on line and being able to inform a trusted adult what is happening. As teachers we should be vigilant but also aware of the dangers of young people “following the crowd” of young people “trying out ‘cool’ new sites”. Children have always been children and thankfully they explore their world and try things to see what happens we cannot stop this nor would we want to really. We do want them to be safe though but we can’t be there for them all the time. We need to give them as much information as we can about the what is out there and how to deal with it especially peer pressure. My youngest daughter recently pointed me to an article in the Daily Mail highlighting a new social media site aimed at 13 -17 year old. The Snapchat millennials the ‘Digital Natives’ ( don’t really like that term). You know the ones who understand the technology the ones we are relying on for the future of engineering and commerce. The social media site is called Yellow and the article paints a particularly disturbing picture of life on line for 13-17 year olds.
We are hopefully getting geared up for next week and hopefully going to ensure that our young people will take on board the messages we are sending. We will hopefully look at what we are doing and decide that the annual SID will be only the start of a year of giving our young people a constant message on how to ensure they remain safe online.
We are really pleased to have won this prestigious award. It is a great recognition of the amazing Labdisc suite of dataloggers. The design is inspiring the technology packed into a science lab in your hand is remarkable. Young people are empowered in their learning by using our dataloggers to create experiments and explore the science around them. The Labdisc works with all major operating systems having recently included Chrome books to their impressive array. This award adds to the already impressive selection that the manufacturer Globisens has acquired of the past 5 years. If you are at the BETT Show this week you can see for your self what makes this datalogger so special.
Is scoring high in the test a real reflectionary of how well our young people are doing? Do our students have more depth of knowledge?
Please read this article and use the comments to discuss how organisations working with children and especially schools are working to help young people. Schools have safeguards on their networks to prevent access to unsuitable sites but once a child is ‘let loose” with their tech they can access anything. Schools work with parents but in my experience parents tend not to attend online sessions specifically aimed at them and often feedback from schools shows those who do attend are the parents who are, or will, take control of their child’s Internet use. Those parents who do not attend are the ones who are often oblivious to the challenges of Internet use.