It’s like having an expert right beside you
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Classroom teachers and scientists discuss the merits of the Science Learning Hub. They find the resources relevant, engaging and visually appealing and appreciate how the Hub makes scientists accessible to the public. Teachers also value the time they save, referring to the Hub as a one-stop shop.
Science is a vast topic, so the Hub is the answer to that, I believe.
It’s kind of like having an expert right beside you to show you these things and give you the knowledge and expertise that you probably don’t have yourself.
Once you leave university and become a teacher, you get engrossed in your own world, and you struggle to find time to go and do background reading as to what the latest research is, so the Science Learning Hub is putting it up there as a resource for teachers, and you’re constantly looking at different aspects of it and thinking, wow, that’s cool.
It’s the only one that’s actually based on a New Zealand curriculum, and it’s the only one that has New Zealand scientists.
PROF KEITH HUNTER
The role the oceans play in water storage is the dominant one because they contain virtually all the Earth’s water – 98 and a half percent.
The thing that makes it spectacularly useful in New Zealand classrooms to New Zealand students is that the science is New Zealand science, and so it I think helps them make a connection that they could be a scientist in New Zealand.
I’ve found that the Hub has got so much useful information. It’s relevant, pertinent. It’s local.
SHARYN DE JONGE
During the Christchurch earthquake, I found the earthquakes component really good. Children obviously were being bombarded with so much information in the media, it answered so many of their questions that, you know, I was struggling to answer too.
It’s written by teachers but also the videos and things, the kids can understand it, which is great.
SHARYN DE JONGE
It just offers so many resources for little movie clips and photos that can generate talk.
The different kids find things at their own level, and they’re able to read the things that they can and digest those things.
The benefit of the Hub is that it is a great source of stuff you can use unmodified, or you could modify it yourself.
SHARYN DE JONGE
All of that information’s really easy to access. You can pick bits out and mix it into your own class.
Rather than sitting there with a black and white periodic table, they’ve got computers they can interact with. They’ve got videos they can watch and listen. What the Learning Hub does is provide the students with context and real life examples of these 20 elements. Where are they used, what do they look like, what are they for, and where were they discovered? And it’s that, that sort of aspect if you like, which is more engaging for the students.
Particularly with those animations it’s visually appealing, so it appeals to younger kids as well as the older ones. The videos too, with the experts, I think they are brilliant because they have these people demonstrating things and showing them things that you can’t see anywhere else.
The Hub has been fantastic in that it has made our scientists accessible to the public.
DR DAVID KROFCHECK
It makes people aware of topics that they didn’t even know existed, radioactive dating of objects or some strange particle physics, nuclear physics search or some kind of work going on in the Antarctic.
You can spend a lot of time searching on the Web and never exactly find the right thing, and the fact that someone has proofed it that the material is accurate. It just saves me time, it’s almost like a one-stop shop.
SHARYN DE JONGE
Getting visits to interesting places with your class is really hard these days because of all OSH requirements – nobody wants your class stomping into a science lab – so it does, it opens up a window into just so many other worlds that children this age wouldn’t get to see.
We go on field trips, which are great, but they’re actually really difficult to organise, but this is just at the touch of your fingers, it’s right there.
It’s alive, it’s growing all the time.
As students get more exposed to it, I actually think there are students who just really enjoy science who will access it themselves outside of my classroom as well. There’s lots of stuff there that I think kids will just enjoy.