Explaining New Zealand’s role in science
Scientists and specialists from a range of fields discuss the benefits of working with the Science Learning Hub. The benefits include showcasing scientists’ personal stories, the opportunity for educational outreach and an accurate representation of their work.
The Hub has been fantastic in that it has made our scientists accessible to the public. So often when schools come through, the scientists might be out on the research vessel, they might be teaching academic courses in town, so they’re not here available to talk to every student, so by using the Hub, the teachers and the students can meet the scientists before they come out to the facility or follow on and look at the research that’s going on here back in the classroom.
PROF KEITH HUNTER
I think it’s you know important to show that we you know, we are human beings and we have all the same sort of interesting foibles and we have our own personal story about how we’ve arrived at where we were.
DR JULIE HALL
I first became involved with the Science Learning Hub when we were putting together the Antarctic voyage in 2008. So we were looking at our options for education outreach from that voyage and started discussions with the Science Learning Hub about what we could do with them to translate the science we were doing on the voyage in real time, pretty well, from the voyage straight through to the Science Learning Hub. We scoped out, in collaboration with staff from the Science Learning Hub, topics that they thought would work well in schools and would link into the curriculum, and we had one of those each week of the voyage. We started off with an introduction to the ship and life on the ship and right through to the very detailed science from the deep ocean in Antarctica.
DR DAVID KROFCHECK
People find things that are interesting that they maybe read something about in the newspaper and they’re not quite sure. Large Hadron Collider – what is that? And I want to express that to other people. And to do that you need a resource, you need some place like the Hub where you can look for ideas that you didn’t know existed, and then get firsthand connection with people who are actually working on that project and you can see how they’re excited and how it fits in New Zealand.
DR JULIE HALL
We’ve gone on in a whole range of areas to work with the writing team and the video team to put the science we’re doing together and making it accessible to schools, and I certainly, in talking to the scientists that have been involved in that, they found it a really great experience, and the feedback we’ve had from teachers has been really good as well.
The Science Learning Hub has been fantastic in working alongside the scientists. They’ve been very, very focused on ensuring that the material that they present is accurate. Scientists were very, very pleased in that relationship. There is a lot of to-ing and fro-ing and involvement and confirmation of material before it went live.
The background of the research and the detail that they went into to actually understand some complex science that our scientists are involved in was, was really great. They kept us in the loop, they gave us a chance to look through the footage that was being there, they asked questions, they weren’t afraid to recognise that our scientists are the experts in these fields so they made sure they got things right.
PROF KEITH HUNTER
It’s really important to have that connection between the active people who are creating new knowledge and the young kids, cos you’ve got to bridge that generational gap because many teachers might be 10, 15 years away from the process, and they might have only been exposed for a little tiny bit of research for a very short time.
It’s a one-stop shop resource for teachers, for students to get information. It’s New Zealand-centric, so it does tell a lot of our stories and the science that New Zealand is involved in and relates to us and our context in schools, our context in the CRIs and in the universities. So I think that’s, that’s valuable part to help explain New Zealand’s role of science.