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Edinburgh Regional Event - Tuesday 29th August 2017

UK Youth have confirmed that the Generation code Scotland event will take place on Tuesday 29 August, 12:00 - 18:00 at Microsoft Edinburgh, Waverley Gate, 2-4 Waterloo Place, Edinburgh EH1 3EG.

STEM Ambassadors can stay for the whole event, but will be particularly needed for the first 4 hours.

Generation Code 2.0 (UK Youth)


We are looking for guest speakers who will be available to inspire young people, aged 16-25, in STEM. This may be in regards to your own personal experience of how you got to where you are today, or what you do now and how code is related to this etc.

We want these speeches to ignite an interest in coding with the young people and get them excited about the programme ahead! This would largely be short (10 minute slots). If you can bring something along to show which you have created with code/ inspire people to want to learn coding.

No. of STEM Ambassadors needed: 2-5

Number of Pupils: 40 Pupil Age Group: 16-25 year olds

For more information, please contact

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Dream BIG: An Engineering Blockbuster!

WOW! Dream BIG is hitting the big screens, an amazing engineering movie narrated by Hollywood megastar Jeff Bridges!

Who will build the amazing future of our human race? That question sparks a giant-screen adventure unlike any other in Dream BIG: Engineering Our World, an epically fun tour of inspiration through the visionary advances made by yesterday’s, today’s – and most thrillingly of all, tomorrow’s engineers.

“Upon first consideration, it might not seem the stuff of grand cinematic adventure. But could engineering secretly be an exciting, creative, heroic realm where the optimists of today are creating the life-saving, world-altering marvels that will make for a safer, more connected, more equal and even more awe-inspiring tomorrow?


With an eclectic, stereotype-bursting engineer cast, the huge story told by Dream Big answers that question with a resoundingly “yes” using a series of surprising human stories to expose the hidden world behind the most exciting inventions and structures across the world. It is not only a journey through engineering’s greatest wonders, but equally a tale of human grit, aspiration, compassion and the triumph of human ingenuity over life’s greatest challenges.”

SEP 26 2017

Education/Outreach Networking

by Royal Society of Chemistry/Stem East


Education/Outreach Networking

Tue 26 September 2017, 17:00 – 19:00 BST

Top of Form


Bottom of Form

Event Information


If you are involved in science outreach or education, or if you'd like to be, this is the event for you!

Bringing together Royal Society of Chemistry members, STEM ambassadors and teachers, this event aims to facilitate the sharing of ideas and experiences.

This event is open to all

Refreshments will be provided


Things To Do In Edinburgh Networking Science & Tech



Facebook Messenger





Tue 26 September 2017

17:00 – 19:00 BST

Add to Calendar


St Augustine's R.C. High School

208 Broomhouse Road


EH12 9AD


We’ve teamed up with Mondelēz International, confectionery giant and home to some of the nation’s favourite brands including Cadbury Dairy Milk and Maynards Bassetts, to launch an engineering-themed competition for children.

Children are invited to enter their designs for the chocolate bar of the future and will win a once in a lifetime experience at the Bournville Factory to engineer their winning entry in real life.

The competition aims to engage kids in the joy of engineering and innovation, while nurturing their curiosity through the medium of chocolate.

Entry is open to children aged 8 to 16.

The prize

The winner will receive an all-expenses paid trip* to the Bournville Factory in Birmingham to engineer their winning design alongside chocolate experts and hear from a real life engineer, plus a trip to Cadbury World, and an iPad Mini.

Ten runners up will win a family ticket to Cadbury World.

Competition timings

Competition open now!

Competition closes Sunday 10 September 2017

Winner and runners up announced in early October 2017

Winner to visit Bournville Factory on Tuesday 24 October 2017

How to enter

Get your child to put on their creative cap and take inspiration from the world around them. No idea can be too fabulous, delicious, exciting or quirky and we can’t wait to review some of the clever chocolate concepts.

To see your child’s imagination brought to life and to win a very special experience, simply download the form, get your child to complete the relevant sections and email the form along with any supporting visual materials (e.g. a drawing, a video) to

For full details of the competition click HERE

Link to Entry form


Are you looking for activities for your children this summer?

We are looking for children and young people to enter our #IETPhotoComp to help us capture the modern, creative and exciting image of engineering. Cash prizes to be won and a display in our London venue, Savoy Place. Open to ages 5+ - enter by 31 August 2017! Find out more here 



Engineering is an exciting and fast-changing sector - shaping the world around us and improving the quality of our everyday lives.

Traditional images of engineering and engineers have focused on hard hats and dirty overalls, which is an image the IET is committed to change.

The IET International Engineering Photography Competition is open to any photograph of an engineering-related subject that captures the dynamic, creative and progressive face of engineering and engineers today.

The winning photographs will help challenge public misconceptions of engineering and demonstrate the ingenuity, breadth and vibrancy of the world of engineering.

Who can enter?

The competition is open to all UK and international IET members and non-members. It is also open to young people ages 5+.

The competition will close on 31 August 2017.

View the full terms and conditions


Participants can submit a maximum of five photosacross any of the following categories.

1.Design & Production


3.Environmental & Energy


5.Structures & Transport

Find out more about the categories


Curiosity is a brand new £2.5m partnership between BBC Children in Need and the Wellcome Trust which will use the power of exciting and engaging science activities to create change for children and young people experiencing disadvantage in the UK.

We are inviting applications for grants of up to £10,000 to fund projects that engage children and young people in science based activities. This is not about formal education. Projects should encourage young people to be curious about the world around them and inside them, making a positive difference in their lives: building confidence and self-esteem, developing life skills and expanding horizons.

You do not have to be an expert in science, or even have delivered science activities before to participate, and we encourage organisations who want to try something new to apply.

Successful applicants will receive support from the Curiosity team to help them deliver and learn from high quality science activity in an informal setting.

You will also be part of shaping the future of this exciting initiative as well as able to apply to further rounds of grant funding.

Explore these pages to find out more about Curiosity, what we expect and how you can apply.


Applications are open now, and will close at midnight on 22 September 2017.

Grants will run from January 2018 to the end of September 2018.

We will be expect delivery to be completed by the end of the 2018 Summer holidays to give the best chance for learning to be collected and for you to engage in the second round of grant making.

In this first round of funding we anticipate that up to 20 grants will be awarded across the UK.

Click HERE for more info

IET International Engineering Photography Competition

A new photography competition capturing the creative and progressive face of engineering and engineersEngineering is an exciting and fast-changing sector - shaping the world around us and improving the quality of our everyday lives.

Traditional images of engineering and engineers have focused on hard hats and dirty overalls, which is an image the IET is committed to change.

The IET International Engineering Photography Competition is open to any photograph of an engineering-related subject that captures the dynamic, creative and progressive face of engineering and engineers today.

The winning photographs will help challenge public misconceptions of engineering and demonstrate the ingenuity, breadth and vibrancy of the world of engineering.

Who can enter?

The competition is open to all UK and international IET members and non-members. It is also open to young people ages 5+.

The competition will close on 31 August 2017.


Participants can submit a maximum of five photosacross any of the following categories.

1.Design & Production


3.Environmental & Energy


5.Structures & Transport

For all the info click HERE

Ultimate STEM Challenge is back! Can your students help build a more sustainable future?

Now in its fourth year, BP’s Ultimate STEM Challenge is back for 2017! In partnership with the Science Museum and STEM Learning, BP is inviting UK students aged 11 to 14 to use their STEM skills to help reduce our impact on the environment and create a more sustainable future.

With the world demand for natural resources ever increasing and global warming one of today’s biggest environmental threats, this year BP is challenging young people to use their problem-solving skills and creativity to help create a more sustainable future for people around the world.

This year’s theme – My Sustainable Future – will see young people develop solutions to three real-world challenges which will reduce natural resource use or bring down greenhouse gas emissions.

Teachers and students can choose from three exciting new sustainability challenges:

  • Handy Hydro: Create an efficient design for generating electricity from moving water
  • Parched Plants: Grow indoor plants using a sustainable method that conserves water
  • Brilliant Biogas: Build a system that generates biomethane from food waste

By exploring the practical uses of science, the challenges are designed to inspire young people to consider careers in STEM.

Students can complete this challenge in a STEM Club, during a collapsed timetable day, in classroom lessons or in their own time.

The deadline for entries is January 12th 2018, with winners receiving an Ultimate STEM experience day, £500 to spend on science equipment or field trips, and Science Museum goody bags!

Finalists will compete against schools from around the country at the Science Museum for a chance to be crowned as 2018 Ultimate STEM Challenge winners.

Ian Duffy, Head of UK Communications & Community Development for BP, said:

“BP plays a key role in nurturing the scientists and engineers of the future. With this year’s Ultimate STEM Challenge theme of My Sustainable Future, students will learn about the impact of carbon emissions and how our choices affect the environment. Through our ground-breaking research on science capital, we know that relatable, real-world challenges like this can inspire young people to aspire to careers in science. We’re excited to see what creative solutions students will come up with!”

  • Looking for hints and tips on how to submit a winning entry? Read our guide to find out what the judges are looking for to help your students craft a creative entry:

  • All participating schools can request a STEM Ambassador to support their STEM Club or class – find out more:

  • Last year’s winning team – Bredon Hill in Worcestershire – were inspired by flying animals to develop their design for efficient gliding wings. Watch the video to find out how they did it:

For full details on the competition, access to STEM Ambassadors and to download the free Challenge resources, please visit:

The RHS Green Plan It Challenge is back and open for applications!

What is it?

The Green Plan It Challenge is a ten week challenge in the Autumn term for S2 and S3 students to imagine and design their own garden for either your school or community.

Students will be paired with an inspiring industry mentor who will help guide them through the Challenge, providing tips and knowledge from their own personal experience. Together they will make a model of their chosen garden and present it at a big celebration event, competing against other local schools to win the trophy!

Inspiring venue

Teams that take part in this year’s Challenge will visit Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, for the launch day and celebration day. The Royal Botanic Gardens is one of the UK’s leading Gardens, providing the perfect inspiration for your teams as they begin to consider how gardens and green spaces can be of great importance to people and wildlife alike. Teams will get the chance to meet Horticultural students and get a tour of the inspirational working gardens and grounds.

The launch day will take place on 26th September where students will meet their mentor and be given their design brief.

The celebration day will take place on 4th December where teams will have their design and model assessed and have the chance to see designs by other local schools.

Why take part?

This Challenge is designed to be student led to allow them to think creatively and explore their ideas. It is also relevant to S2/3 science, DT, geography, art, PSHE and citizenship. Students will also have the chance to build on a number of skills including leadership, teamwork, presentation skills, creative thinking and self-confidence.

For more information and to register up to three teams of six students, head to

BP Educational Service boosts support for primary science teaching with Science Explorers

Science Explorers is a brand new collection of resources from the BP Educational Service, offering free curriculum-linked science learning materials for primary school pupils aged 5 to 11.

These fun, free and flexible resources are designed to appeal to primary teachers who are less confident in science teaching. Through the programme’s interactive app, videos and classroom activities, Science Explorers helps to encourage engagement with science from an early age.

Developed with science subject specialists, backed by the latest research and designed to inspire teachers and pupils alike, Science Explorers is an exciting new science learning tool for primary schools.

Find out more about Science Explorers:

Register with the BP Educational Service to access the resources today:

VentureJam 2017: Calling all hipsters, hackers and hustlers (and everyone in between)!

We’re looking for groups of up to 5 young people to take part in VentureJam 2017.

VentureJam is a unique opportunity for 40 young people in Scotland. Young Scot and Glasgow City of Science and Innovation are running a weekend ‘Jam’ that will see teams of young people developing fresh ideas that embrace the digital world to solve real world challenges. Throughout the Jam you will have access to a team of inspirational mentors from the world of television, gaming, product design and 3D animation as well as legal experts and environmental gurus. Young Scot will be there to guide you through the creative process.

At this Year’s VentureJam weekend we’ll give you the tools to develop and design a new idea that could change the future of energy in Scotland, and change people’s lives! 

Every day, us humans chew our way through more than a million terajoules of energy. That’s equivalent to all 7.5 billion of us boiling 70 kettles of water every hour, around the clock! We need to stop our energy guzzling ways but…how do we ensure ‘the lights stay on’?

With access to a team of inspirational mentors, your team will: 

       Learn about the biggest challenges facing humanity – the future of energy.

       Immerse yourself about the latest energy-saving innovations (from heated cycle lanes that melt snow in the winter to electricity generating dance floors!)

       Explore radical new business models to make your idea go global; learning from creative young companies like Uber, AirBnB, Netflix that have changed the way we travel, sleep, and watch TV!

As well as pitching your idea to top investors at Venturefest Scotland 2017, the national innovation summit; the overall winning team will enjoy a once in a life time opportunity to quiz one of the top innovators in Scotland about how he became one of the world’s most successful inventors & Games developers, Chris Van Der Kuyl of Minecraft fame!

Sign up now and tell us why you want to be part of VentureJam 2017! Places are limited. Applications will close on 16th July.

When/Where is VentureJam Taking Place?

VentureJam is taking place from 18 – 20 August 2017 at Glasgow Science Centre, 50 Pacific Quay, Glasgow G51 1EA. Please ensure you are available at the following times: 

  • Celebratory Launch Night: Friday 18 August (6-8.30pm)
  • Jam Activity: Saturday 19 August (10am - 4pm) and Sunday 20 August (10am - 2pm)

VentureJam is the official youth strand for Venturefest Scotland 2017 – a major new innovation summit for Scotland. All young people taking part in the weekend will get the chance to pitch their best ideas from the Jam weekend to top innovators and investors at Venturefest, 'Dragon’s Den' style. Will your team create the next big thing?

Before the event itself you will have the opportunity to attend a "Perfect Your Pitch" session.

Who Can Apply?
VentureJam is open to groups of approximately five people or you can apply as an individual. We are looking for a diverse, lively group of young people aged 14-20 from across Scotland with a range of interests from the arts and music (the hipsters!) to science and gaming (the hackers!) as well as wannabe entrepreneurs (the hustlers!). 

Whatever your thing, we want you to get excited about working in teams to create new ideas (products, games or even interactive art installations) and reimagine the possibilities of how we live our lives and our relationship with energy.

If this is you, we’d love to hear more about why you’d like to attend VentureJam.

Other Important Information
VentureJam will reimburse all reasonable travels costs on receiving valid travel receipts for people/teams attending the event. Some travel tickets can be booked by Young Scot in advance. Please let us know if you will need your travel costs reimbursed to be able to attend VentureJam.

We will provide food/refreshments during the sessions, and we may consider providing accommodation for those coming from longer than 1.5hours away on a case by case basis.

To attend VentureJam 2017, apply here. Alternatively you can either send in a video, voice recorded application or speak to us over the phone. Please email these to

Click the shortened link below for more details

Free GIS for your School (Geographic Information Systems)

As part of our continued not-for-profit work we are providing free access to ArcGIS Online for all UK schools.

ArcGIS Online is a complete, cloud-based mapping platform that makes teaching with GIS easy. There is no install, you just need a browser to get stared. ArcGIS Online works on PC’s, Mac’s, and mobile devices.

If you are a teacher at a UK school you can apply for your free subscription now by simply filling out the required details here.

Or check out their website

Student teams can apply to be part of an exciting robotics challenge that sees them involved in ‘aviation missions’. Teamwork, robots, design, discovery, fun and loads of LEGO are all part of the mix, as are real-world challenges, teacher support and some great prizes.

The lowdown

This isn’t a one-off challenge. It’s a curriculum-linked programme that sees students (11-14s) working together in teams to solve real-world engineering, technology and computing challenges.

Student teams across the country learn how to build, program and control autonomous LEGO robots to complete a series of short, exciting aviation missions using LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Education EV3 sets. From speed racing to humanitarian aid, they’ll demonstrate their skills at challenges held around the country.

The journey starts in school. The challenge events are the culmination of a ten-week extra-curricular or in-school programme where students learn how to design and control their robots to complete the aviation challenges. It’s all with the help of our structured activity plans and learning software, and we’ll also provide you with training and equipment.

Activities can be run with your team outside the classroom or during lessons. The challenge could take your team all the way from regional heats to the national final!

The learning

Your team will research, design, plan, implement and present their own solution to a contemporary engineering problem – developed with support from the Royal Air Force and Rolls-Royce – gaining feedback on their work from the engineering community. The challenge will open up potential new careers to your students and help put their school learning into context.

Applications for the 2017/2018 Tomorrow's Engineers EEP Robotics Challenge are now open from now until 12th July.

Click HERE for more details

Check out the brand new careers resource from Tomorrow's Engineers.      

It explores how to get jobs in 12 different areas of engineering

Gender Stereotyping Competition

Gender Stereotypes – are they fair?

Competition is open for submissions now! Please apply via the link in the menu to the left.

Imagine a girl; imagine a boy. What do your images look like? Most people will have quite distinct ideas about these two imagined people. What things might they like to do, how might they behave and what they might like to be when they are older? These ideas are based on gender stereotypes.

Gender stereotypes are generalisations that assume all girls have certain characteristics and all boys have certain, different, characteristics. Whilst sometimes people fit their gender stereotype, not everyone does. Having these images fixed in our minds can mean we judge a person’s behaviour, interests, choices and expectations before we even know them. Typical gender stereotypes put men (and boys) and women (and girls) into two distinct boxes:

Women / Girls

Men / Boys







Hard working











Not nurturing

We see these roles reinforced on tv, in films, books and adverts. Women are rarely shown in leadership or independent roles, and men are rarely portrayed as caring or communicative. Recently toy, book and clothing manufacturers have been criticised for marketing products to only girls or only boys.

This competition asks pupils to think about these stereotypes. Are they aware of them? Do they agree with them? Do they think they are fair? Do they affect the toys they play with? The books they read? The jobs they want to have? We would like pupils to investigate their own experiences of gender stereotyping and to create a response to the question “gender stereotypes – are they fair?”

What to do

We are encouraging pupils to investigate their exposure to gender stereotypes, decide whether they are affected by them and to form a response in a creative and interesting way. Some possible approaches might be (but are not limited to):

  • A poster raising awareness of the issue
  • A letter to a toy manufacturer explaining their thoughts on toy marketing
  • A story written with a counter-stereotypical message or characters
  • A product designed to appeal to all children/people.

Entries can be from an individual pupil but where possible we encourage team entries of up to four pupils. There is no limit to the number of entries per school. There are two age group categories (P1-3 and P4-7) but if a group spans these age groups, we will assess the entry as we see appropriate.

To find out more click HERE

Engineering education grant scheme

The Engineering Education Grant Scheme provides support for UK-based educational projects that aim to increase engineering knowledge in young people aged 5 - 19.

 The Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) have merged their educational grant schemes to produce greater coherence in their funding for formal and informal learning support. This combined scheme is designed to streamline the application process, promote partnership working and strengthen how successful interventions are measured.

The Engineering Education Grant Scheme (EEGS) aims to engage young people aged 5-19 in learning about engineering and to develop the professional skills of those involved in supporting STEM learning and careers awareness. The EEGS also supports projects that improve wider engineering literacy.

Any organisation capable of developing and delivering UK-based educational activities is eligible to apply, including schools, IET or IMechE members and STEM organisations. We are particularly keen to receive applications for projects from teams with diverse expertise, a range of skills and from a variety of sectors.

There are two levels of funding available. Awards of up to £5000 (inclusive of any applicable VAT) are available for standard applications to the fund, and up-to-four awards of £15,000 are available each year.

Applications for funding must be endorsed by an authorised representative of the IET or IMechE no later than 11th March 2017get in touch for contact details.

Spring 2017 funding round

Bids for funding will be accepted 16 January - 1 April 2017 for projects taking place from 1 June 2017, and you must request an endorser by 11th March. Bids submitted after 1 April will not be considered.

Decisions will be announced w/c 30 May 2017.

To apply for funding you must:

read the guidelines and assessment criteria;

develop your application in collaboration with the authorised endorser (request your local contact);

submit your application by email.

Application form and guidance

Download the Engineering Education Grant Scheme application form

Download the guidance for Engineering Education Grant Scheme applicants

All successful applicants are required to submit a report on completion of the funded project. Applicants who have not submitted a report for a previously funded project will not be considered for further funding until the outstanding report has been submitted and acknowledged.

Click HERE for more details

Frank McKeever, STEM East-

8-4-1945 - 8-12-2016

It's with great sadness that we announce that Frank McKeever, co-founder of STEM East passed away suddenly on Thursday 8th December in York.  Frank made a remarkable achievement to Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics spanning a number of years.  He will sadly missed by us all, and touched the lives of so many with passion, energy and commitment. 

Kevin McKeever

The Royal High School, Edinburgh & Jacobs Engineering STEM Event

9 STEM Ambassadors employed by Jacobs engineering recently organised a STEM event at their Edinburgh office with 15 pupils from Royal High School in Edinburgh, through a teacher at the school, Phil Wootton.

The event was a combination of a presentation about a career in an Engineering and Environmental Consultancy and some of the different routes into employment, as well as 3 interactive exercises showing a bit of what Jacobs do.

The exercises were:

1.       Bridge building challenge

2.       Sustainable town planning challenge and ecology quiz

3.       Construction of a working hydro power model challenge.

Thanks to Ben Johnston,Tomas Martin,Stephen Clark,Ryan O’Connor,Jack Brisbane,Michael Spencer,Neil Rose,Stefanie O’Gorman & Colette Smith from Jacobs who took part in making this event a success.   Jacobs are looking to deliver more of these activities in 2017, so if you are a school interested, please get in touch with one of us at STEM East. 

Post Activity STEM Ambassadors Evaluation 

Have you carried out an activity in the last year?   How did it go?   Make your view count!

After every activity you undertake, please remember to complete the online evaluation- It only takes around 5 minutes to complete and is simple.  Link below to the evaluation :-

Thanks for your time!


Discover free BT STEM Crew curriculum-linked resources for 11-16s in biology, physics, maths and design and technology. Each topic includes a film, interactive quiz, downloadable student worksheets and curriculum links.

prev next

For more information on these free resources visit

Make a difference – be an engineer

This new, interactive presentation introduces 11-14 year olds to engineering, inspiring them to think about a career in engineering. Developed in collaboration with the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Institute of Physics, Institution of Civil Engineers and the Institution of Engineering and Technology, along with input from teachers and volunteers, it covers the diversity of engineering with the central message that engineers can improve people's lives and solve problems around the world.

**NOTE: We strongly recommend that you read the Presenter guidelines before delivering this presentation. You can download these using the button below or find out more by reading the 'Presenter guidelines' section below.

Download presenter guidelines

Download the presentation

The presentation covers:

- What engineering is 
- What engineers do
- How engineers impact on our everyday lives
- The range of jobs engineers are involved in through real life examples
- The different routes you can take to a career in engineering
- Where the jobs will be in the future

It has 13 examples of real engineers to explore with children along with videos of them at work, ideas for short activities you can do and discussion points to get them and keep them engaged.

Presenter guidelines

To help you understand how to use the slides we have developed a set of Presenter Guidelines which walk you through slide by slide so you can feel confident when you deliver the presentation to young people. 


For more information please visit Tomorrow's  engineers careers page, using the shortened link below.


Dear sir/madam,

I am writing to you concerning an exciting opportunity for your school to have some free performances of a science communication show from our ‘Zombie Science’ lecture series.  These spoof University lectures have been developed in collaboration with the University of Glasgow, the Wellcome Trust, and Time-Tastical productions. They are aimed at Secondary school students (S3-6), and cover the real science behind a Zombie outbreak, using it as a means to educate, enthuse and inform audiences about the biological sciences.

This is an extension of a previous Wellcome Trust funded project 'Zombie Institute for Theoretical Studies Public Engagement Programme' in which over 36,000 people and 84 secondary schools have already participated. A showreel of the shows is available at the following link:

We can present up to three shows per day and we have availability throughout the academic year 2016/17 during which we could visit your school.  Normally a visit would cost £300 but the Wellcome Trust have provided funding to partially subsidise the project.  Funding is limited so early booking is essential.

An overview of the science areas covered is available in the booking form.  If you would like to book shows for your school please complete this online form and someone will be in touch with you shortly to arrange a suitable date:

Lisa Di Meo

Practical Action New Challenges

Practical action have now launched their new STEM challenges- Design for a better world and Global Goods.

For more information please visit :-


Mars Mission Debate Kit 

The Mars Mission Debate Kit asks the question:

Should we send a human space mission to Mars?

The kit allows students to look at the argument from all sides; to explore the social, technological, physiological, and ethical issues around sending a human space mission to Mars.

All the facts in the Mars Mission Debate Kit have been researched. This page is populated with references and additional information relating to the kit.

How have your students’ opinions changed?

The aim of the kit is to explore the social, ethical, technological, and physiological issues around sending a human space mission to Mars. We’ve created an online survey to help you track your how your students’ opinions change throughout the activity.

Find the online survey here and let us know how your students’ opinions change through the debate

Suggested extension activity

The eight characters in the Mars Mission Debate Kit each provide a different point of view on sending a human mission to Mars. Ask your students to consider any other view points which may not have been covered.

For example, how will our perception of ourselves as humans (or of the Earth as the cradle of life) change if we discover life on Mars or elsewhere?

For more information or to register free of charge to get your debate kit, please use the link below:-

Next round of applications closes 30th June 2017.

The Crunch- Wellcome Trust

You may all be interested to know about The Crunch from the Wellcome Trust.

It’s a year of activities, experiences and discussions about our food, our health and our planet. They have a number of interesting elements including kits for schools, activities for families and Ambassadors to help deliver this over the next 12 months.

From mid April and through May 2016 they will be delivering free science resources kits to every school and FE college in the UK. They will also be sending the kits to Pupil Referral Units, teacher training institutions and many other learning settings who the Wellcome Trust think might find them useful.  I think that the SLPs in England and SSERC in Scotland may also get a kit which should help with their support of teacher CPD in their areas.

In the kits aimed at 11-14 year olds and 16-19 year olds there will be a number of BBC Micro:Bits.  From what I can tell these are linked to the Big Food Survey activities that are contained within these kits.

As part of Innovation April, the IOP have put together some facts highlighting how physicists don't always just stay in the lab or lecture theatre: physicists can be found across all sectors, and play a major part in supporting the UK economy.

Software for teaching and learning computational biology

Free loan boxes for schools

We provide free loan boxes to schools who are interested in teaching and learning bioinformatics. Each loan box consists of 10 Raspberry Pi computers and all necessary peripherals, apart from monitors. The loan boxes come installed with the latest version of our 4273π materials, suitable for sixth-form level and with links to the Scottish Higher curriculum in Biology and Human Biology.

The loan boxes were made possible thanks to funding from Teachers Together and Access for Rural Communities projects at the University of St Andrews. This allowed us to buy lots of Raspberry Pi Model 2 computers, Rii keyboards, USB power adaptors, powered USB hubs, VGA to HDMI adaptors, extension cords and micro sd cards.

The loan boxes were first used during the Teachers Together Conference in 2015 at the University of St Andrews. Teachers Together is a partnership that encourages links between Higher Education and schools. Around 50 teachers from Scottish State Schools attended the conference, and they were given the opportunity to learn more about selected disciplines within the University.

A group of around 20 teachers chose to be introducted to the School of Biology at the University of St Andrews. The group first attended an introductory talk by Dr Jacqueline Nairn, and afterwards learnt about PCR techniques and bioinformatics. The 4273π team gave a hands-on demonstration of the Raspberry Pi and some of the 4273π materials for learning and teaching bioinformatics.

The teachers “really enjoyed learning something new”. They said the best part of the worshop was the “introduction to Raspberry Pi”, and “getting to experiment on the computers, something I don’t get the chance to do much”, and that they were “previously unaware of the technology”. They appreciated the “practical help and explanations”, and thanked the team “for helping me and explaining without making me feel clueless”.

Visit for more information 

WISE Campaign- People Like Me

A resource pack for schools

New Bespoke People Like Me Packs- Physics, Electronics & Digital

Following the successful launch of the People Like Me campaign by WISE and the school resources pack, WISE have now launched 3 Bespoke packs- Digital, Electronics & Physics.  To access these fantastic resources please use the link below

Young robotics champions win chance to go to USA for World LEGO Final

23 February 2016- West Linton Primary School 

A team of students from West Linton Primary School in the Scottish Borders has won the Institution of Engineering and Technology’s FIRST® LEGO® League (FLL) UK and Ireland Final, which was attended by Secretary of State for Education, Nicky Morgan. The winning team has been invited to compete in the FLL World Festival in St. Louis, USA.

The science and technology challenge, which is aimed at 9-16 year olds, tasks teams to solve real world problems with the help of a robot. This year’s challenge, which was announced across the world in August, requires young people to identify a real-world problem in the way that waste is dealt with, investigate it and come up with an innovative solution. They also had to design, build and program an autonomous LEGO MINDSTORMS robot to tackle a series of waste-related missions.

The winning team ‘West Linton Wasps’ impressed judges with their advanced robotics skills, as well as their project, which investigated the problem of wasted vegetables from school lunches. After finding that 60 per cent of vegetables were being wasted, the team introduced an incentive scheme where children earned tokens for eating vegetables, which earned prizes for each class. The school has seen a 47 per cent reduction in wasted vegetables and hopes to extend this scheme to other local schools.

Team members were Aedán Contier-Lawrie (11), Owen Jones (11), Jessica Levine (11), Cameron MacKay (12), Rebecca Moroney (11), Louis Myatt (12), Malcolm Rodwell, Logan Stewart (11), Alexander Walpole (11) and Oscar Weipers (11).

Gail Jackson, one of the team’s coaches at the Young Engineers and Science Club at West Linton Primary, said: “We had an amazing, never to be forgotten day. The children loved the whole experience and can't wait to take our robot and our project presentation to the World Championships!”

President of the Institution of Engineering and Technology, Naomi Climer, said: “The IET runs competitions like the FIRST LEGO League in order to show young people how creative, exciting and rewarding engineering can be. In order to tackle the engineering skills gap we need more graduates to enter the profession, and this can only happen if more school-age children are attracted to, and choose to study STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects – competitions like FLL are therefore vital.”

At the final each team, of up to ten 9 to 16 year olds, was tasked with designing and programming a LEGO MINDSTORMS robot and using it to solve problems and tasks. The runners up were the ‘Rubbish Runners’, a team of home schooled students from across London.

Expectations are high this year as past UK and Ireland finalists have gone on to be crowned FIRST LEGO League World Champions at the global final in America.

The West Linton Wasps won a place in the FLL UK final after seeing off fierce competition from teams across Scotland. They were crowned Champions at the Dundee regional heat which was organised by Lambda Jam and the RSE Young Academy of Scotland with support for Skills Development Scotland who were keen to see the competition grow as part of their Digital World campaign, aimed at changing attitudes and promoting careers in the digital technology sector.

The IET is FLL’s UK and Ireland operational partner. Supporting the competition is part of the IET’s commitment to show young people the benefits of careers within Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

FIRST® LEGO® League helps young competitors to develop skills in design and technology, programming and control, mathematics, research, strategic thinking and teamwork. For more information visit: FIRST® LEGO® League website.

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CISCO Little Big Awards- Scottish Regional Final

Hosted by STEM East

Callendar House, Falkirk

  • CISCO Little Big Awards is a UK National Competition run as a joint collaboration between CISCO and STEMNET.
  • Schools throughout the UK have been working on ways to "Connect the Unconnected", looking at using technology to identify ways to make life better by connecting every day things.
  • STEM East were delighted to host the CISCO Regional Final for Scotland on Tuesday 23rd February 2016 held at the prestigious Callendar House in Falkirk.
  • The event was hosted by Frank McKeever from STEM East, and had a judging panel consisting of Ewa Monteith-Hodge from Science Connects, Kevin McKeever from STEM East, Pete Hall from CISCO, and STEM Ambassador Allan Davidson.
  • The schools competing in the final were Kilwinning Academy and Notre Dame High School, both from the West of Scotland.
  • Pupils from both schools pitched their product to the judging panel, and the standard of work, creativity, ingenuity and innovation was of the highest standard.
  • As well as receiving individual certificates, the two finalist schools received awards in the categories of:-

Creativity, Design & Usability,

Best Business Case,

Technology, Research & Implementation,

Planning, Process & Documentation,

Final Pitch & Presentation


A huge well done to all the pupils and their teachers for their hard works, creative ideas, and massive amount of hard work put in.!

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Digital CREST

The British Science Association (BSA) is delighted to announce Government support for a new digital platform to support its CREST Awards scheme. The Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) has agreed a grant of £270,000 to develop Digital CREST, a new digital platform to enable more young people to participate in its CREST Awards scheme.

CREST Awards, the UK’s largest national award scheme for project work in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects, enrich students' interest in STEM subjects and careers.

The BSA wants more young people to benefit from doing CREST in their schools, youth clubs and homes. Over 30,000 11 to 18-year-olds achieve CREST Awards every year, 51% of whom are girls - and the BSA intends to grow this to over 60,000 over the next two years.

Removing barriers to access

The digital platform will help to remove barriers to access for schools not currently involved in the programme, especially students and teachers in disadvantaged and remote areas.

It will provide a streamlined way for teachers and students to sign up and receive guidance on the CREST Awards process and enable more volunteers from academia and industry to help young people with their CREST projects.

Universities & Science Minister Jo Johnson said: “By recognising the hard work of pupils and teachers the CREST Awards are helping inspire young people to follow a career in STEM. Our investment in this new digital platform for the awards will recognise the hard work of pupils and teachers across the whole of the country and help secure the UK’s position as a world leader in science and innovation.”

Imran Khan, Chief Executive of the BSA, said: "We are extremely grateful to the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills for awarding us this grant that will enable us to transform the CREST Awards programme and expand its reach. The BSA wants all young people to have the chance to experience the excitement and creativity of science in a context that fits their own identity and interests, and - through its student-led approach - CREST provides that."

Find out more about the CREST Awards scheme

STEM East are delighted to announce that following her shortlisted nomination of the WISE “Hero” category, one of our STEM Ambassadors, Jennifer Walsh-O’Donovan won first place at the 2015 Wise Awards. The 2015 final sponsored by Bloomberg took place on 12th November 2015 in London with WISE Patron HRH The Princess Royal in attendance. The WISE awards celebrates female talent in Science, Technology and Engineering from Classroom to Boardroom.

The WISE Hero Award was sponsored by Babcock, and purpose of the category is to celebrate the inspirational story of a woman using Science, Technology or Engineering qualification to make the world a better place.

Jennifer works as a Clinical Scientist in the Southeast Mobility And Rehabilitation Technology (SMART) Centre. In SMART, Jennifer works in the wheelchair and special seating service where she designs customised solutions for people who require additional postural support. Jennifer also works in the gait analysis laboratory where they analyse patients gait to guide their treatment.

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Queensferry Crossing- Review of 2015 in video

Watch this fascinating short video of the new Queensferry Crossing and it's progress during 2015.

Check out STEM East's Teachers Resources page to find out more about what Practical Action has on offer, including a range of free STEM Challenges and resources.

Check out STEM East's Teachers Resources page to find out more about Into Film, careers in VFX.

Kirkcaldy High Teacher Helen Higham scoops first place at STEMNET awards 2015

Kirkcaldy High teacher Helen Higham scoops top award at prestigious National STEMNET Awards 2015

STEM East are delighted to announce that following their nomination in the category of "Most Dedicated Teacher in the UK" for the Annual STEMNET Awards, Kirkcaldy High School teacher, Helen Higham won the top prize in these National Awards.!

  • The Final of the STEMNET Annual awards took place yesterday on Tuesday 6th October 2015 at the House of Lords in London.
  • The prestigious awards were hosted by STEMNET's president, Lord Sainsbury. STEMNET's Chief Executive, Kirsten Bodley presented Helen with the award, which includes a trip to world famous CERN in Switzerland.
  • BBC Breakfast News Business Journalist Steph McGovern also spoke at the awards and congratulated Helen on this amazing achievement.

Shortlisted in the final for the category of "Most Dedicated Teacher" alongside Helen were two teachers from Tapton School in Sheffield, and Churchill Academy in Somerset.

Nominating Helen for this award and at the final at the House of Lords, STEM East's Kevin McKeever commented:-

"It is a remarkable achievement to reach this stage of a competition- to actually win it is something special. We're delighted for Helen and this recognises her enthusiasm, dedication and passion for STEM and teaching. This is fantastic news for both Helen and Kirkcaldy High School and reflects some of the fantastic work taking place in both Fife and throughout the East of Scotland"

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