Tuesday, April 5, 2022

An Eggciting Easter Challenge

Today's blog post is brought to you by Mackayla Miller, one of our advisory teachers based in the North East.

Happy Easter folks! Here at CIEC, it’s no yolk that we’re egg-stremely eggs-cited about inspiring the next generation of scientists and engineers, but we’re also partial to a few terrible egg puns at this time of year.

Mackayla has been working with the year 6 children at Levendale Primary School to deliver our egg-cellent Children Challenging Industry (CCI) programme. The ‘Eggs-press Delivery Challenge’ was a tough challenge indeed, but this egg-ceptional group of pupils were willing to whisk it all and refused to be beaten. Working in teams with a budget to spend, the groups hatched their plans, packaged their eggs, shelled out for their materials, and are now eagerly awaiting the arrival of their packages in the post to see to see whose eggs survived the journey.

John Baker and Paul Bickley from Teeside plastics manufacturing company Alpek Polyester UK Ltd, joined the classroom sessions via Zoom to give the children an insight into their jobs and engage them in a remote site visit, including an exciting interactive bottle-drop investigation. But it’s not just the children who benefit from the Children Challenging Industry experience. Here’s what John Baker, HSEQ and Technology Director has to say about getting involved:

“I’ve been involved with CCI for nearly 10 years now and every session, whether face to face or more recently using video conference, is great. The engagement from the children in the classroom is fantastic, with them often asking challenging and thoughtful questions. As well as trying to get across what we do in industry and the rewarding careers from STEM subjects, it is an opportunity to speak directly to teachers about what can be quite limited in the curriculum on science and engineering. In some sessions, explaining what we in industry think is obvious can, when seen through different eyes, put a whole new perspective on things, so it is not just a one-way street. The practical sessions show the children the scale of our operations and seeing their sense of wonder reminds me of my primary school teacher who inspired me into my career (he was a nuclear physicist!). I would recommend anyone in STEM careers getting involved as it is a rewarding session.”

If you would like help to get cracking with your STEM education why don't you contact ciec@york.ac.uk to see if you could become involved in any of our initiatives to link schools with science based industries.  Alternatively, you could try this activity with your class as full teacher notes are available for free from our website.

Full activity notes are available in this free CIEC resource including teacher guidance and safety advice

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