Great Science Share brings science investigations into homes
Tens of thousands of young people, parents, teachers and carers are participating in a mass programme of scientific discovery and communication across the UK while access to schools is limited. This year’s Great Science Share for Schools (GSSfS) campaign has registered over 45,000 young people during the UK’s COVID-19 lockdown to share their scientific questions and home investigations on things they’re curious about. The national campaign designed and led by The University of Manchester to inspire 5-14 year olds from across the UK and overseas to share the science that they’re most interested in with new audiences. This year’s campaign has seen registrations double since the COVID-19 lockdown began in the UK.
A swift move to take the campaign fully on-line has seen weekly themes linked to Global Sustainability Development Goals and celebratory days – such as International Dawn Chorus Day, World Ocean’s Day and the Royal Astronomical Society’s 200th Birthday. Each week inspirational live science lessons and activities have encouraged question asking and sharing via social media. The response has kept Twitter alive with posts that are now shared on the Great Science Showcase Blogs.52% of registrations for GSSfS come from teachers or parents engaging young people from areas with the highest social disadvantage in the country. This is helping to narrow the opportunity gap in traditional learning and participation being experienced currently across much of the world. A recent Sutton Trust report states that 23% of pupils are reported to be taking part in live and recorded curriculum-led lessons online every day. However, pupils from middle class homes are much more likely to do so (30%), compared to working class pupils (16%).