Yorkshire schoolchildren discover hidden worlds
Posted on 10 November 2003
Year 6 pupils across Yorkshire will have the chance to discover the fascinating secret lives of insects and germs. In the project, 'Hidden worlds - secret lives', scientists from CNAP at the University of York, will take microscopes into schools and show the children the detail and complexity of tiny organisms.
The project, which is funded by Yorkshire Forward, brings science and art together, as the children then produce artwork based on what they have seen under the microscope.
"The Hidden Worlds project introduces children to a part of the natural world which they don't see when they're out and about," said Alex Brabbs of CNAP. "The children are fascinated to see cells under the microscope and it stimulates their curiosity about how living things are made."
"The children also find art a very effective way of communicating scientific information. The drawings and paintings from our pilot studies were beautiful and showed how the children's imaginations captured life under the microscope."
Pupils at Lord Deramore's School in Heslington will be the first school to take part in the project, but the scheme will extend to at least 45 schools across Yorkshire. Participation in the scheme is free of charge to schools, is closely linked to Key Stage 2 curriculum, provides teacher training and a creative approach to science education.
"Some of the schools are already signed up, but we would be happy to hear from others across Yorkshire which would like to be included in the project," said Alex Brabbs.
Notes to editors:
- CNAP is a plant and microbial gene discovery centre in the Department of Biology at the University of York. It aims to solve problems for industry, society and the environment through its research. Its 'Science and Society' office runs a variety of community-based programmes.
- The Hidden Worlds - Secret Lives project is funded by Yorkshire Forward for a period of 18 months and is part of a larger programme for development of their Bioscience Cluster through bio-education. Funding for the bio-education development programme amounting to £100,000 has been awarded to Prof. Dianna Bowles and Dr Caroline Calvert of CNAP.
- Yorkshire Forward is the driving force behind the economic regeneration of the region, delivering a programme of change that will make a positive difference to our people, our businesses and our environment. For any further information on the work of the Regional Development Agency please visit our website www.yorkshire-forward.com
- The bioscience cluster in Yorkshire and Humber is one of the most exciting in the UK with a strong bioscience knowledge base, with seven specific Centres of Research Excellence. We have an emerging community of entrepreneurial ventures, favourable quality of life and important related industries, such as medical devices.
- The biosciences community within the region, is projected to grow by some 10 per cent over the next five years. Built on a foundation of world-leading academic strengths within the region's nine universities and dedicated research Centres of Excellence, Yorkshire and Humber has evolved into a dynamic multidisciplinary 'cluster' for life- and bioscience research and industry. Already employing over 10,000 personnel, the industry benefits from an estimated annual private sector bioscience R&D spend of over £213 million, and ploughs over 39 per cent of its annual turnover back into research. Home to a rapidly developing core biotech and mature pharma industry, including the multinational companies Johnson and Johnson, Smith and Nephew and Galileo Pharmaceuticals, the region's major commercial strengths lie in the fields of drug discovery and development, tissue engineering/biomaterials, plant biotechnology and contract research.