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Skip to 0 minutes and 7 seconds[Deborah] Welcome to ‘Planning Activities’, the second course in the ‘Inspiring Young People in STEM’ program for STEM Ambassadors, and other volunteers in STEM. I’m Dr Deborah McNeill, the lead educator on this course. I’m Director of the Glasgow Science Festival and part of Science Connects, the team responsible for managing the STEM Ambassador programme in the West of Scotland. [Zara] And I’m Dr Zara Gladman, Public Engagement Coordinator at Glasgow Science Festival. [Deborah] Over the next two weeks, we’ll be sharing our experience of developing and planning STEM activities. You’ll look at a range of practical activities, videos and articles and share your ideas in discussions throughout this course.

Skip to 0 minutes and 47 seconds[Zara] It’s really important to tailor your activity to meet the educational needs of the young people you’re engaging with. For example, the type of activity and language you use will differ if you’re working with a secondary school physics class compared with a Girl Guide group. We’ll discuss how to plan and develop activities differently for the classroom or other, non-school environments. Key to this is communicating effectively with educators as part of your activity planning. We’ll examine how to discuss the aims of your activity with teachers or group leaders, and how to ask the right questions.

Skip to 1 minute and 20 seconds[Deborah] By the end of this course, you’ll be equipped with tools to help you to develop your own engaging activity that inspires young people with STEM learning and careers. First, we need to explore what we mean by an engaging activity and inspiration.

How to engage young people

Welcome to ‘Planning activities’, the second course in the Inspiring Young People in STEM program.

The purpose of this course is to help you match your volunteering activities to the educational needs of the young people you work with. Central to this is being able to communicate with educators or group leaders in the schools or community groups you volunteer. We focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects in this course, and practical activities such as experiments, demonstrations and hands-on tasks.

On this course

In Week 1 you will look at different modes and delivery for engaging with young people, and how to use curricula to inform your discussions with teachers. In Week 2 you’ll create your activity plan with a risk assessment and practise your activity.

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • Develop an engaging and inspiring STEM-related activity for young people
  • Communicate, negotiate and agree with educators and group leaders about activities and demonstrate an appreciation of the STEM curriculum
  • Design a practical activity to be delivered within a school or non-school organisation, with an awareness of the audience, ability and age group
  • Create an activity plan to use when delivering a practical activity in a school or non-school organisation

Course team

Dr Deborah McNeill, from the Glasgow Science Festival, University of Glasgow and Science Connects, the West of Scotland STEM Ambassador Co-ordinator, will guide you through the course. Deborah is supported by Dr Zara Gladman, Glasgow Science Festival, University of Glasgow with advice from Aileen Hamilton, Science Connects. Over the next two weeks, we’ll be sharing our experience of developing and planning STEM activities. You’ll look at a range of practical activities, videos, articles and share your thoughts and ideas in discussions through this course. The Inspiring Young People in STEM program is coordinated by Angela Rust, Training Coordinator for STEM Ambassadors.

The course will be supported between 29 January – 11 February 2018. If you’ve joined us after then, please draw upon the comments from other learners or if you have any particular queries, sign up for the next run of the course in April 2018.

Orientation

If you’re new to online learning, or new to FutureLearn, you may find the How it works guide helpful. The Crowdsourced Guide to Learning and Six tips and tools for social learning on FutureLearn may also be of interest.

Tasks and discussions

Tasks are titled as such and are highlighted with a vertical line in the left-margin - like the one against this paragraph. The first tasks of this course are at the bottom of this page.

Learning together

This course is designed to enable support from fellow learners, particularly via the discussions. Feel free to share your thoughts and questions about the course and share your experiences as a volunteer. FutureLearn is a ‘social learning’ platform, so please invite help by posting a question as a comment in the relevant course step. If you can help a fellow learner, don’t be afraid to reply and make a suggestion.

Technical support

If you need any technical support use the Support button at the bottom right of your screen or email feedback@futurelearn.com. If you wish to get in contact with the National STEM Learning Centre directly about this course, please email onlinecpd@stem.org.uk.

Get started

Introduce yourself

To get us started, say hello, who you are, and what volunteering role you have in the comments below. We’d like to know what you’ve experienced as volunteer or participant that has really made an impact on you.

Mark complete

When you complete a step on the course, click ‘Mark as Complete’ at the bottom right. This helps you keep track of your progress. Mark over 90% of the course steps complete and you’ll be eligible for a Certificate of Achievement when you Upgrade.

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Inspiring Young People In STEM: Planning activities

National STEM Learning Centre

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