Dundee Science Centre

Science Community Provides Holiday Fun to Local Families

Dundee and Angus College students are teaming up with Dundee Science Centre to provide holiday kits for some of the city’s most deserving children.

Funded and created by University of Dundee as part of the Dundee and Angus Regional STEM Partnership, the climate and sustainability-themed Science @ Home kits have been packed up by a group of Applied Science and Life Science students before making their way out to families during the two-week school break.

Daria Cieslikiewicz and Paulina Filbrant – students on D&A College Certificate in Applied Sciences course

Packed with a range of activities and experiments tied into COP26, the October holiday kits contain everything from a greenhouse effect experiment and tips for being more sustainable at home to an origami flowers activity.

The kits evolved from the Science Centre’s Home Learning Programme, which kept hundreds of Scottish children entertained and engaged online while their schools were closed during lockdown.  Aimed at breaking down barriers to science engagement, almost 5400 kits have now been distributed since the project launched last Summer.

Families will be able to access a box via the FORT system which puts Dundee families in need with a range of service providers through referrals from GPs, social workers, teachers and others.

Gary Douglas and Morgan Smith from D&A College SWAP Access to Life Science class alongside Jamie Strachan, Operations Officer, Dundee Science Centre

Katie Baxter, Learner Engagement Manager at Dundee and Angus College believe that the project has been an amazing opportunity for students – “Students from our Applied Science and Life Science courses relished the opportunity to make up the science kits for the Dundee Science Centre. Through wider-achievement activity, our students can develop those meta-skills needed for life after college, including leadership, critical thinking and communication.”

Carlene Cura, Development and Fundraising Advisor added, “Exploring science is a brilliant way to spend time and have fun as a family and, although there are lots of online resources to keep kids entertained, there’s something special about getting stuck into a kit of activities and experiments and exploring what’s inside! Similarly, many families don’t have access to digital resources or enjoy the privilege of extra funds for activities and days out so these kits will give both children and their families a real boost over the holiday period.  To really make a difference locally, we love to collaborate with our partners and we’re extremely proud to be working alongside the wider science community, from our local college students through to the University, to reach more families throughout the city.”

Carlene Cura, Dundee Science Centre

The Dundee and Angus Regional STEM Partnership connects the community with education and industry, bringing together schools, further and higher education, third sector and industry partners and other agencies. The partnership aims to inspire the community to learn about STEM, deliver excellence in STEM learning and close equality gaps in STEM.

The kits are funded by the University of Dundee and Wellcome Institutional Strategic Support Fund awarded to the University of Dundee, with input from the University Major Events and Public Engagement team, Schools of Life Sciences, Science and Engineering, Social Sciences and University Botanic Garden. The kits are being distributed as part of the University of Dundee’s Festival of the Future. The full festival programme, with events taking place throughout October, is available at  Festival of the Future | University of Dundee.

For more information, contact Carlene Cura, Development and Fundraising Advisor, Dundee Science Centre – Carlene.cura@dundeesciencecentre.org.uk or 01382 868610.