14. 9. 2011, by Lucie Kettnerová, category: news
More than 200 pre-school children and almost 250 elementary school pupils from the second district of Prague, which is also the home of the Faculty of Science, participated in the faculty’s special children’s day on September 13. In the faculty’s Botanical Garden, kids were exploring where gold comes from and what an engorged tick looks like under the microscope. The patient ones could even count how many flies a carnivorous plant can catch in an hour.
“Our faculty deals with topics that are attractive for all age groups. We are trying to put more focus on young kids, even preschoolers. During our natural science summer camps and the children’s days, we strive to capture their attention, motivate them and make them interested in the nature and environment, and thus set them on the path that might to lead to our profession,” says Alexandra Hroncová, director of the Faculty of Science’s External Relations department. “Moreover, many scholars and students are more than happy to share their knowledge of their research fields with curious young people.”
The preschoolers got a much simplified lecture, whereas the pupils could build on their previous knowledge. They proceeded through a series of checkpoints, at which they could learn something from chemistry, look at a hornet or a tick under the microscope or get familiar with a chameleon or darkling beetles. Many kids were stopping at a popular, although unplanned, checkpoint on a lawn under a horse-chestnut tree and leaving with pockets full of conkers.
Those teachers interested in microscopes could arrange a free loan of microscopes for their school or kindergarten, so that the kids could explore textures of other materials. Schools will soon also be able to take advantage of a new educational centre at the Faculty of Science’s Botanical Garden and take special guided tours of the area.