The Malta Independent 18 August 2019, Sunday

Science and Arts meet Maltese schoolchildren

Thursday, 6 June 2019, 10:50 Last update: about 3 months ago

Science and Arts are both disciplines that need creativity and critical thinking skills. Malta needs future generations to develop these skills to match the economic and social needs of the country. Steam School Malta is a programme run by the University of Malta that is trying to instil these skills in secondary schools in Malta through creative hands-on arts and science activities delivered by University of Malta staff and students.

The project was previously funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union. It is based on the Steam (adding the Arts to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) and IBSE (Inquiry-based Science Education) educational approach developed through an EU project called Creations.

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The project aims to communicate science to pupils in a stimulating way and to increase schoolchildren's confidence in Steam subjects.

Steam School Malta is an opportunity for students and other participants outside university to develop skills and experience in science communication and education. The programme trained University of Malta volunteers, some of them from the student organisations MBSA, S-Cubed and KSU, in science communication skills by involving them in the process of designing the school activities.

Afterwards participants visited St Nicholas College Middle School, Sacred Heart College and St Francis Secondary Schools to deliver the experiments and arts' activities to students aged between nine and 14 years.

School visits reached more than 300 individuals and were very well received by students and teachers who wanted to repeat the event for next year's school programme.

However, more students need to be reached by many different actors in Malta's educational system to manage to meet the country's needs and challenges. Initial research, based on previous editions, indicates an increase in the confidence of students in Steam subjects and point towards a bright future.


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