"The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it." -Neil deGrasse Tyson
Science is all around us and, everywhere we look, we can find something to examine scientifically. Science is so important, and through the study of scientific material, researchers have contributed to making some of the most significant developments of technology that the world has ever known.
Such as? Improvements in the field of medicine, such as vaccines, ultrasounds, and life-saving medications. More thorough knowledge of our universe thanks to the invention of telescopes. And, the most significant aspect of science & technology development is that of global communication due to the creation of the satellite.
Honestly, we could go and on about the noteworthy developments of science in our modern-era but rather than that, we shall focus on an important day of the year that encourages the next generation to take studying science-based disciplines seriously: World Science Day.
Established in 2001 by UNESCO, World Science Day for Peace and Development is celebrated on November 10 every year around the world. Its purpose is to instruct future generations about how science and technology build healthier communities and contributes to solving global problems such as climate change.
UNESCO encourages educators and schools to take an active interest in promoting World Science Day.
Through activities planned by students and teachers alike, World Science Day can be something that even teenagers might like. Therefore, we'll mention some highly recommended activities for World Science Day that can be utilised during secondary school. Let's get started!
Teachers: How to Introduce New Activities to Teenagers
Pretty much all of the negative stereotypes about teenagers are true; and, I'm allowed to say that since I am only 23 years of age and was an adolescent quite recently!
"When your children are teenagers, it's important to have a dog so that someone in the house is happy to see you." -Nora Ephron
And, of all the members of society that have to deal with teenagers, teachers have to sharpen their skills and find effective ways to make essential information get through to them. While the task of helping teens assimilate even the most critical info is a challenge, introducing new activities or projects is a whole new obstacle. How can it be done?
Superprof is here to help educators receive the advice they need to set in motion new activities and events associated with important dates such as World Science Day. And, while many experienced educators may be familiar with the following tips and tricks, we thought we'd reiterate some necessary suggestions to
- Talk to Teenagers Like Adults: nothing grinds the gears of adolescents more than when superiors, such as teachers, talk to them in a demeaning manner. As they grow into adults, educators need to speak to teenagers as equals, and this will contribute to better communication and healthy growth.
- Appreciate and Encourage Suggestions: when not asked for, suggestions can be a hindrance; however, when embarking on a particular project with teenagers, teachers are wise to gather advice and the input of students. Why? Teenagers want to feel valued and have their ideas appreciated, so strongly considering or asking for their opinions makes them want to participate in more activities such as World Science Day.
- Don't Be Too Serious: teenagers are already going through a lot of their problems which leads them feeling discouraged and sulky; therefore, don't make matters worst by being too severe and strict. Ideally, teachers want to make their classroom a haven that students look forward to since laughs are shared, interactive activities are conducted, and fun games are played. Therefore, when bringing up a new event/project make it sound like something, no one would want to miss!
- Explain Guidelines from the Beginning: like everyone teenagers, need to know where they are going and what to expect. Hence, from the get-go, establish guidelines about the new activities that both you and students must follow to keep the project enjoyable for all. Remember to be firm yet fair and not expect too much from students because, in reality, you are both learning since it is new.
- Don't Sweat the Small Stuff: any good teacher knows that they need to pick their battles and not get riled up over every little negative comment or attitude of misbehaviour. Address significant problems that will cause division and affect the introduction of the new project. Make sarcastic comments and joke about the rest; teens love that!
If taken seriously, all of the previously mentioned suggestions will ensure that new projects and activities surrounding World Science Day will be a smashing success amongst teenagers at secondary school.
Also, it is essential to be compassionate. We have to remember that adolescence is one of the weirdest times and that we are all once teenagers. So, don't get upset and take it personally if someone doesn't want to participate, they'll come around wait and see!
Now, what are some new activities that can be introduced in the classroom for International Science Day? Keep on reading to find out more!
Interactive Exploits for Teenagers on World Science Day
Now that we've discussed how to introduce new activities to teenagers let's focus on creating World Science Day projects that are interactive and engaging for adolescents. And, while there are many talented science teachers at various secondary schools in the UK, it may occur that finding creative ideas is not always easy.
We propose some projects for World Science Day that will motivate teens to view science and technology as fundamental in today's society while having fun at the same time.
Although they are too cool to admit it, teenagers, like children, really appreciate going on field trips to explore new things and learn outside the academic classroom. Therefore, to increase the love for all things science, teachers are wise to plan a field trip to a science centre or museum. But where?
The following are some highly recommended science-based places of interest that are worthy of visiting on November 10:
- your local Science Museum
- the closest National Space Centre
- a Life Science Centre
- your local planetarium
- History of Science Museum
The previously mentioned options are all fantastic and boast excellent reviews from the past millions of visitors. Bear in mind that during COVID-19, a lot of places are closed or not comfortable accepting a large group of people; call ahead to reserve!
Interview a Science Professional
While a career fair might be too much to undertake for World Science Day, we suggest asking a professional who is currently working in a field of science to visit your class and enthusiastically highlight the benefits of science.
Why does that work? Near the end of secondary school, many teens are searching for a career path that will be perfect for them. Therefore, and having someone speak about the advantages of employment in the sciences might sway them in the right direction and inspire them to study science & tech at university.
Also, hearing from an adult that isn't their nagging teacher proves very beneficial for teenagers who want people to value their future and efforts.
After the presentation of a science professional, even if no student is motivated to embark on a career in the sciences, they will most likely begin to admire and respect the efforts of scientists and find ways to support scientific research.
Science can be a lot of fun when it is practised in a hands-on manner. And science experiments make even the most uninterested students curious about chemistry or biology. For instance, I firmly believe that I had one of the worst science teachers on the planet, yet I still enjoyed science classes at a secondary level because of lab experiments.
So, to make World Science Day an event to remember, brainstorm with your students about a safe yet entertaining science experiment that could be completed as a class together. It's better to choose ahead of time so that teachers can purchase all the necessary tools and items.
The following are a few science experiments that are worthy of consideration amongst teens:
- Blowing Up a Balloon With Yeast,
- Creating a Bottle Rocket,
- Creating a Homemade Phone Speaker,
- Homemade Operation Game,
- Coke and Mentos Explosion.
If time permits, why not try two or three science experiments? They are bound to make World Science Day a smashing success.
Conduct a Science Fair
Of all the things listed, nothing cultivates a love for science and technology more than a competitive science fair amongst peers. Have students select a partner and a scientific theme to discover and present in front of their peers.
Choosing World Science Day to conduct a science fair is a brilliant idea to get everyone involved and passionate about the event weeks ahead of time. Also, by knowing that a first, second, and third prize will be received at the end of the day, students are fueled to compete and do the best they can.
And, it's important to state that winning/competition is how a lot of teenagers develop an appreciation for any subject, sciences included.
Considering current restrictions on public gatherings - to say nothing of public spaces being shuttered, you may have to confine your Science Day activities to your classroom.
Grab the popcorn and soda and get ready for a movie day!
Some students eagerly look forward to watching movies in class and World Science Day is a perfect occasion to introduce a science-based motion picture or documentary. What are some of the best options?
The following are a few science documentaries or movies to watch with teens on November 10:
- The Bill Nye Film,
- An Inconvenient Truth,
- Food Inc.,
- A Brief History of Time,
- Chasing Coral,
- Temple Grandin,
- Hidden Figures,
- March of the Penguins.
All of the previously mentioned films are entertaining and educational about science-based subjects. We recommend complementing movie watching with other science activities.
We sincerely hope that all the suggestions in today's article will make World Science Day for Peace and Development a memorable event for secondary school students who are the country's future!