By Tom Morton
Sparking an interest in electricity this week among isles primary pupils is a team from Generation
Science, a touring programme of scientific shows delivered by the Edinburgh International Science
From Cullivoe to Skeld, led by Generation Science workers Cailean Hall-Gardiner and Gary
MacDougall, bairns have been participating in interactive workshop sessions under the banner Power From The People.
Supported by Total Exploration and Production UK Ltd, the idea is to provide pupils with an
understanding of what electricity is, how it can be stored and how to create it using specially
designed hand generators.
The programme has been designed to illustrate how electrons flow around a circuit, and how magnets and human movement can be used to produce electricity.
Most exciting for pupils and adults is the ‘Hexbug Challenge’, where teams charge up mini robotic creatures and race them around a track.
Joan Davidson, Generation Science Manager said the aim was to improve science education in primary schools.
“We are delighted to be touring this year to Shetland,” she said.
“We will visit over 600 schools in Scotland over the spring and summer terms to show young learners the wonder of science and its real world applications. We aim to bring science to life in the classroom and to educate and inspire young learners in science.”
Della Armstrong, Total Shetland Gas Plant Manager Senior Secretary, attended the sessions in Brae and said she had both enjoyed herself and learned from the experience.
“Making science fun and interactive is key to inspiring pupils from a young age to engage with science, technology, engineering and maths – subjects which are at the heart of Total’s education agenda,” she said.
“Transferring knowledge through Generation Science workshops will help children understand the important role that science plays in our everyday lives.
“Promoting such learning is crucial for inspiring tomorrow’s engineers and towards serving our future energy needs.”
Power from the People is one of 15 shows and workshops provided by Generation Science that are designed to make science fun, exciting, easy to understand and to help teachers cover the school science curriculum.
Since Generation Science was launched, it has reached well over one million pupils in Scotland.
It is the largest science education outreach provider in the UK, visiting schools all over Scotland with a programme of different shows and workshops for all ages, from infant classes right up to upper primary.
This year the tour will visit over 600 schools in 32 Local Authority areas from Shetland to the Borders.
The Shetland workshops began on Monday in Brae, with children from Lunnasting and Mossbank Primaries taking part too. On Tuesday the team is in Northmavine, at Ollaberry and Urafirth Schools, before heading to Yell on Wednesday, to Burravoe and Cullivoe.
Thursday takes Garry and Cailean to Skeld and Scalloway, and Friday concludes the trip with sessions in Whiteness and Tingwall.