UNAWE - First Ireland Meeting


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1st UNAWE Ireland Meeting in Armagh (Ireland)
C. Odman

Presenting UNAWE to representatives of the Irish astronomy and education communities.

November 2006.

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UNAWE - First Ireland Meeting

  1. 1. UNIVERSE AWARENESS (UNAWE) • Initiative for a worldwide scientific culture • Expose very young (ages 4 - 10 years), underprivileged children to the inspirational aspects of astronomy UNIVERSE AWARENESS – Broaden the minds of the children UNAWE – Enhance their understanding of the world – Demonstrate the power of rational thought Armagh Observatory 22 Nov 2006 Carolina Ödman - Leiden Observatory MOTIVATION WHY ASTRONOMY?• Beauty and size of the Universe excite young children • Astronomy is Science• Basic knowledge of the Universe is a birthright• Ages 4-10 are crucial for child development • Astronomy is Culture and Human Development• Knowledge about the Universe can broaden the mind • Astronomy is Multidisciplinary• Why young and underprivileged children? – Need is greatest • Astronomy is Exciting – Cognitive disparities increase with age – Cultural differences less pronounced • Harnessing Science (Education) for Peace GOALS OF UNAWE GOALS OF UNAWE• Communicate the beauty and scale of the • Use inspirational astronomy to develop Universe to young children cognitive skills – Excite stimulate their curiosity – Help develop a “world view” • Reach large numbers of children Astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another. • United Nations Millennium Development Goals – Universal Primary Education – Gender Equality in Primary School Plato 1
  2. 2. PRINCIPLES OF UNAWE INGREDIENTS OF UNAWE • Material• Inspiration is paramount – Games, Cartoons, Songs, Hands-on material – Emphasis on play and entertainment – Developed by professionals – Translated into various languages• Bottom-up approach – Driven by the needs of the local cultures and educators • Training – Coordinators in each target country• General approach – Tailored to each country and community – Earth awareness and citizenship, membership of a diverse human family • International Network – Awareness of the Sun, planets, solar system, galaxy, the – Platform for outreach professionals and volunteers worldwide Universe – Exchange of ideas, experience and materials BACKGROUND AND TIMELINE BIRTH OF AN IDEA 2003 - 2005 • 2003 George Miley awarded a KNAW professorship • 2004 Informal discussions • May 2005 1st UNAWE multidisciplinary workshop, ESO, Germany – International Steering Committee set up. • September 2005 Project Manager appointed • October 2005: Meeting at UNESCO in Paris • November 2005 - present: Pilot activities in Tunisia 2006 2007• January 2006 - present: Pilot activities in Venezuela • Appointment of a Media Coordinator• April 2006: Meeting in Heidelberg • Second meeting at UNESCO• August 2006: Formal launch of UNAWE at the IAU XXVI • National groups: General Assembly – EU: Netherlands, Italy, Spain (Ireland, UK) – Endorsement by the IAU – Non-EU: India, South Africa, Indonesia, Colombia (Chile)• October 2006: 2nd UNAWE multidisciplinary workshop • EU Framework Programme 7 – Funding for the UNAWE International Development Office for 3 • IAU at the UN General Assembly - IYA 2009 years awarded by the Dutch Minister of Education, Culture and Science • Other workshops – The world in the school, schools in the world• December 2006: First teacher training in Spain – UNAWE workshops – National meetings 2
  3. 3. TIMELINE CHARACTERISTICS OF UNAWE 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 PREPARATION DEVELOPMENT IMPLEMENTATION EVALUATION• 2009 – Implementation in a number of EU and emerging countries – International Year of Astronomy… CHARACTERISTICS OF UNAWE Environments• Underprivileged children in diverse environments – Basic, intermediate, advanced – Europe (e.g. inner cities) and Emerging countries• Modular and phased – Will take account of stages in child development ENVIRONMENTS CHARACTERISTICS OF UNAWE• Advanced Environment • Exploits ethnic and historic – School from ages 4 - 5 heritage of astronomy – Access to internet at school and often at home – Tangible and Intangible – Well-trained teachers cultural heritage• Some challenges – Overloaded children – Overloaded educators - ties to the curriculum – Existence of other programmes Newgrange, Co. Meath – Involve parents, day care, etc. 3
  4. 4. Astronomy heritage Astronomy heritageInner Mongolia, Baimiaozi, 4000 BC Egypt, Nabta 4300 BC Japan, Kanayama ~ 3000 - 4000 BC Mexico, Chichen Itza, ~ 1100 AD China, Gaocheng, 1279 AD Astronomy heritage EDUCATIONAL ASPECTS European Southern Observatory Hubble Space Telescope 1998 2004 MODULAR STRUCTURE SOME TOPICS • Age groups • Sky Awareness – Levels of cognitive development – Observation and awareness • Earth Awareness, Earth Citizenship • Programme lengths and delivery methods – Seasons or no seasons – Remote areas vs. Inner cities – Diverse Human Family – Educator training, standalone programmes – Cultural diversity by comparison • Topics • Solar System, Constellations and Planets – Scales, Comparative approach • Methods – Environmental awareness – Culturally relevant: Involve indigenous cultures and • The Galaxy and the Exotic Universe their astronomy – Adventure! 4
  5. 5. METHODS COORDINATOR TRAINING• Direct observations • Training of Local Coordinators – Familiarisation – Central contact point – Bottom-up approach: Making the programme theirs• Hands-on activities – Appropriation • Role• Playing and singing stories and myths – Supervise programme in specific region – Maintain contact with schools and teachers – Experience – Take part in the development and the evaluation of UNAWE• Twinning activities, interactive software – Exchange and real-life experience • Practical Aspects – Training course by UNAWE• Large input from local cultures – Approach will differ for each region MATERIAL TUNISIA PILOT PROJECT• Playing and active stimulation – Songs, games, toys etc. – Model building that children can keep• Excitement – Short adventure films – Cartoon characters, gripping adventure stories – Set in beautiful and exotic environments• Internet (Advanced Environment) – Class twinning to reinforce Earth awareness – Developing countries often have darker skies CITÉ DES SCIENCES, TUNIS ASTRO-BUS• Activities for 4 - 10 year old children • Bus with astronomical activities travels to most remote – Observations of the Sun areas – Workshop on the Solar System • Between January and May 2006 over 1000 children of – Workshop on Sun-Earth-Moon 4 - 10 have taken part• Educator Training workshop • More future cooperation between the Astro-Bus and the Children’s Clubs – Pilot Astronomy programme in 7 Children’s Clubs – Partnership with the Ministry of Women, Children, Family and Elderly affairs. • Part of a ‘Caravan of Sciences’ 5
  6. 6. UNAWE Tunisia UNAWE Tunisia• A National Action Committee has been formed• Government funds UNAWE in Tunisia – Ministry of Family Affairs – New collaboration: Ministry of Education VENEZUELA PILOT PROJECT CHUAO, A REMOTE COMMUNITY • Contact with children – Astronomical images – Spontaneous involvement – Sharing of experiences • Interest of women • Impact of astronomical images MÉRIDA TEACHER TRAINING UNAWE VENEZUELA• Teacher training workshop • A National Action Committee has been – Encounter between mythical and scientific views of formed the world and the universe• Training with children • Government funds UNAWE in Venezuela – Model building to take – Ministries of Education and Science home – Collaboration with the Venezuelan UNESCO• Visit of the Ye’kuana tribe (Southern Amazon) delegation – Explanation of the calendar, constellations 6
  7. 7. FILM TIME! UNAWE, A GLOBAL INITIATIVE WHO WE ARE UNAWE collaborations Team of ~30 people of 15 nationalitiesInternational Steering Committee National Groups- George Miley (Leiden, Netherlands) Tunisia, Venezuela, Colombia,- Claus Madsen (ESO) Spain, South Africa, India,- Cecilia Scorza (Heidelberg, Germany) Netherlands, etc.- Isa Baud (Amsterdam, Netherlands)- Alec Boksenberg (Cambridge, UK)- Karl Sarnow,(Brussels, Belgium)Project Manager Workshop 2006- Carolina Ödman ~ 50 participants of 20 nationalities ENDORSEMENTS ENDORSING ORGANISATIONS • Prof. Catherine Cesarsky, President of the International Astronomical Union • ASTRON: Netherlands Foundation for Research in Astronomy (2006 - 2009) • CIDA: Centro de Investigaciones de Astronomía, Venezuela • Prof. Ron Ekers, Former President of the International Astronomical Union (2003 - • Cité des Sciences à Tunis: Tunis Science City 2006) • CSIC: Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Spanish National Research Council • Sir Bob Geldof, Musician, philanthropist and activist • EAAE: European Association for Astronomy Education • EUN: European Schoolnet • Prof. Riccardo Giacconi, 2002 Nobel Prize winner • ESO: European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere • Prof. Federico Mayor, President of the Foundation for a Culture of Peace • IAU: International Astronomical Union • Prof. Michel Mayor, First discoverer of extrasolar planets • IUPAP: International Union of Pure and Appllied Physics • Dr. Khotso Mokhele, First President of the South African National Research • KNAW: Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences Foundation (1999 - 2006) • LDI: Learning Development Institute • Sir Martin Rees, President of the UKs Royal Society • Leiden University • LOFAR: The LOFAR Foundation, The Netherlands • Prof. Joseph Taylor, 1993 Nobel Prize winner • NOVA: The Netherlands Research School in Astronomy • Prof. Charles Townes, 1964 Nobel Prize winne • OCW: Netherlands Ministry of Education, Culture and Science • Prof. Robert Williams, President Elect. of the International Astronomical Union • SRON: Netherlands Institute for Space Research (2009 - 2012) • Sterrewacht Leiden: Leiden Observatory, The Netherlands • ZAH: Universität Heidelberg, Germany 7
  8. 8. UNAWE INTERNATIONAL NETWORK UNAWE in Ireland• Numerous initiatives around the world – Often isolated – Growing interest and feedback for UNAWE• Platform for communication and community – Exchange of ideas, experiences, material – Announcements, membership directory – Think-tank for bottom-up approach – Outlet for UNAWE ideas – Inclusion of other partner countries Questions Questions• Children • Structure – Who are the children who would benefit the most? – Is passive/active support from the authorities likely? • Location, cultural background, language, learning – Is it better to aim for formal or informal education environment, family structure, rural/urban, etc. systems? – What material captures their attention? – Are there synergetic programmes to work with in• Educators/teachers/minders joint ventures? • Enthusiasm, interest, time, incentives? – Are there specific requirements for the training?• Astronomy community – Are there potential sources of funding that could be approached to support UNAWE in Ireland? => Wishlist for materials development Aim 2007 - 2008 Ireland and other UNAWE countries• National Action Committee / Group • Benefits of international collaboration – Twinning between children but also teachers – Collect background information and feedback to – Networking, exchange & showcase of ideas ensure adapted programme • National astronomy meetings – Project plan for implementation • Bridge with Academia • People, places, best practice, budget, funding possibilities, – “Live astronomy” etc. – 2009 International Year of Astronomy – Organise national pilot activities (teachers) • Global events and projects – Participate in International pilot activities – EU Funding in FP7? • It has already happened ... 8
  9. 9. Thank you!http://www.UNAWE.org/ 9