Yesterday was quite a fun day at work. I was told to supervise a group of students taking part in a local ‘Science Challenge’ at my old college. The thing that appealed to me the most when I was given the description about the day was that I would simply have to be there.
“Excellent,” I thought, I was looking forward to getting some video editing done for something I was working on. I mean being an arts and humanities student, there was nothing inside me that jumped up upon hearing the words ‘science challenge.’
However as the day progressed, I found myself being entertained by the challenges to the degree that I decided to even join in! There were a number on offer: Programming a robot car, building a vehicle, using facial recognition technology and building a bridge out of paper.
The best thing about this challenge day was the age of the pupils who had been invited to take part. They weren’t 15 or 16 year old students but mere 12-14 year old schoolchildren. I found myself wishing that I had also had this opportunity when I was still in secondary school. Even if it would not have had an effect on my career choice, it would have still been nice to be involved in things like this. The closest event I remember is when a maths teacher made us build bridges out of straws. (Which were spectacularly flimsy but a fun lesson nonetheless.)
It was great to see the enthusiasm on the students faces as they tried their best to win each challenge.
Their competitive nature could be heard, “you copied our design!.”
“No we didn’t, great minds think alike!.”
Out of all of the challenges, the one I liked the most was building bridges out of paper. The reason being that it is easy to replicate in any classroom. Whilst the others require all sorts of equipment, all you need for this is paper, masking tape and some string.
The day drew to a close with a small talk from a civil engineer and the funny thing is, I found myself learning new things about the field. Perhaps it is a good sign that a policy is in the pipeline for all London students to have had 100 hours of work experience/careers advice by the time they are 16. The day was definitely a great way to create great aspirations for school pupils.
Until Next Time
A Worried Student