Research in Schools

Last Tuesday I took part in CERN@School and TimPix teacher development day NV501

The event introduced physics teachers to using state of the art technology from CERN, through the CERN@school kit and access to data from the TimePix detectors.  CERN@school is a project based around the CERN@school kit and access to data from TimePix detectors.

We were inspired by Prof Becky Parker, who has built up the Institute for Research in Schools (IRIS). She has an amazing track record of facilitating school pupils’ independent research, enabling them to collaborate with career scientists.

At the heart of the program is the TimePix radiation detector.  I am looking to use one of these to collect data that may be useful to research scientists.  Through the collaboration, I expect the interaction with scientists will raise pupils aspirations and engagement with science/STEM career paths.  As Tamsin is working on climate modelling, I thought the data may be a higher-order addition to the climate model, which may have a small impact on the model, but which may not be added due to existing resource constraints.  I see the main aims of the IRIS program as giving pupils free rein to engage in free-range research, in extra-curricular time.  If a scientist has a subsidiary project that could be done by the pupils, it may be a useful support to guide the pupils.

Prof Parker mentioned Dr Kirkby and the CLOuD project, but I thought I should do some background reading and ask Tamsin’s help.

There is some funding available from the Royal Society and IRIS may also be able to get funding from other sources.  The Royal Society offer £3,000 for a School Partnership Grant for example, the current deadline is Monday 1st August, so it may be something we work towards for similar date in 2017.

I don’t have much experience of writing research / funding proposals, especially as I wouldn’t know what work would need to be done or what would need to be funded.

I work in Mill Hill, NW London.  I think a collaboration with a London University would be easiest for face-to-face meetings, but given the nature of the widening range of scientific work, I think links with scientists further afield via Skype etc could be worth trying.

Let me know what you think, what should I do next?


John M. @jm8997 | | LinkedIn profile




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