Internet helps to enliven science

Tes Editorial

An Internet-based advice scheme, aimed at motivating tomorrow's scientists and tackling skills shortages, is expanding and looking for help.

The Scottish Science and Technology Network, which started in the north-east, has enhanced the teaching of 5-14 science and technology, and physics and chemistry at Advanced Higher.

Co-ordinator Margaret Garden says: "What we have done is work with teachers, taking the best of the web and aligning it to the 5-14 curriculum. There is so much available out there but teachers don't have the time to surf and research. When they do find the information, it is rarely targeted at the Scottish curriculum. We offer a huge range of tailor-made resources, from complete curricular projects to problem-solving tasks."

Volunteer mentors from industry, finance, police forces and universities offer advice through the system, which is secure and password protected. There are 90 mentors, but another 250 are needed.

Chris Edwards, a member of the British Antarctic Survey, relayed advice about weather forecasting via the web to a class at Tullynessle Primary school in Alford, Aberdeenshire.

Ms Garden says: "The feedback from the teachers is that it is bringing science and technology to life for the children."

The scheme stems from a partnership between Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, BP and Scottish Enterprise Grampian.

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