Universe Awareness Presentation


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"Universe Awareness Presentation"
C. Odman

Presented at: Birla Planetarium
Chennai, India
March 2007

Published in: Education, Technology
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Universe Awareness Presentation

  1. 1. UNIVERSE AWARENESS UNAWE Carolina Ödman odman@strw.leidenuniv.nl odman@strw. leidenuniv.Birla Planetarium, Chennai http://www.unawe.org/ http://www.unawe.org/ UNIVERSE AWARENESS (UNAWE)• Initiative for a worldwide scientific culture.• Expose very young (ages 4 - 10 years), underprivileged children to the inspirational aspects of astronomy. – Broaden their perspective – Enhance their understanding of the world – Demonstrate the power of rational thought• By broadening children’s minds, UNAWE will help stimulate tolerance and internationalism 1
  2. 2. Why is Astronomy suited for Peace Education?• Science • Multidisciplinary – Investigation, curiosity – The big questions – Ambassador for all sciences • FUN! – Development of – Beautiful images technology – Extreme conditions• Culture – Unreachable yet – History available to all past & in the making! – Cultural heritage MOTIVATION• Beauty and size of the Universe excite Young Children• Basic knowledge of the Universe is a Birthright• Ages 4 - 10 are crucial for Child Development• Knowledge about the Universe can broaden the mind• Why young and underprivileged children? – Need is greatest – Cognitive disparities increase with age – Cultural differences less pronounced 2
  3. 3. GOALS OF UNAWE• Communicate the beauty and scale of the Universe to young children• Use inspirational astronomy to develop cognitive skills• Reach large numbers of children• United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – Universal Primary Education – Gender Equality in Primary School PRINCIPLES OF UNAWE• Inspiration is paramount – Emphasis on play and entertainment• Bottom-up approach – Driven by the needs of the local cultures and educators• General approach – Earth awareness and citizenship, membership of a diverse human family – Awareness of the Sun, planets, solar system, galaxy, Universe 3
  4. 4. INGREDIENTS OF UNAWE• Material Games, cartoons, songs, hands-on material • Entertaining and developed by professionals (ECD/didactics) • Translated into various languages and cultures• Training • Dialogue, dissemination, feedback, evaluation • Tailored to each country and community• International Network • Communication between teachers and development professionals worldwide • Exchange of ideas, experience and materials • Coordination of independent initiatives PROGRAMME • Modular: Occupy few contact hours per year upwards • Adapted: Languages and cultures of target groups • Stimulating: Must cultivate imagination • Professional: Must be developed by professionals • Culturally relevant: Involve indigenous cultures and their astronomy 4
  5. 5. TIMELINE 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 PREPARATION DEVELOPMENT IMPLEMENTATION EVALUATION• 2009 International Year of Astronomy… PILOT PROJECTS VENEZUELA, TUNISIA & COLOMBIA• Venezuela – UNESCO Schools network – Astronomy community – Ministry of Science and Education• Tunisia – Science City – Teacher training and travelling “Astro-Bus” – Ministries of Family Affairs and of Education• Colombia – Street children – Drug guerilla orphans 5
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  7. 7. UNAWE, A GLOBAL INITIATIVE Team of >20 nationalitiesChile, Colombia, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, South Africa, Spain, Tunisia, United Kingdom, Venezuela 7
  8. 8. UNAWE, A GLOBAL INITIATIVE UNAWE in India• Underprivileged children – Urban communities (street children, working children, no sky) – Rural communities (poverty, illiteracy, beautiful sky)• TNSF: – Experience and established network of activists – Collection of folkloric material and existing material – Workshop in Chennai March 25 - 27. 8
  9. 9. UNAWE and TNSF workshop• Enthusiasm & Dynamism• Experience & Network• Reach & Scope• Events and continous activities• Integrated approach – Effectiveness – Context• «!Language of the people!» – Rational & Folkloric• International dimension• Hosting & propagation UNAWE and Planetariums• Planetariums: Excellent network across the country• Organise visits with popularisation movements as follow-up of UNAWE programme• Special programme for children: No need for elaborate science (4-10), just the fun bits!• Training facility for educators/teachers/activists• Share materials• Feedback (Learner’s experience) 9
  10. 10. Thank you! Carolina Ödman odman@strw.leidenuniv.nl http://www.unawe.org/ 10