UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology


IoN brings the scientific method to London primary schools

20 April 2010

Dr Stephanie Schorge (Department of Molecular Neuroscience) describes how smells, colours and balls inspired London schoolchildren in a day of scientific discovery last month.

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“Through a unique arrangement the Worshipful Company of Pewterers, a City of London Livery company, funds a fellowship at the UCL Insitute of Neurology.

I am the eleventh ‘Pewterers’ Fellow’, and although the salary of a research fellow is not luxurious, it is still the largest charitable donation made by the Worshipful Company, so I decided early in my tenure as the Pewterers’ Fellow to try to give the Company something back.

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St Jude and St Paul’s CofE primary school in Dalston is another charitable effort of the Company (as with most Livery companies in London, the Pewterers are primarily a charity these days). Three years ago working with the Livery member Lyn Williams, I arranged a day of scientific inquiry for the nine- and ten year-olds in year five.

I had three goals: first, to have the children try out the scientific method; second, to give the children a chance to meet a ‘real scientist’ and to suggest that it is a viable future career; and finally, to make a token acknowledgment to the Worshipful Company of Pewterers for stepping in at what is often a bottleneck in research careers.

Last month I took part in the third year of ‘Livery Science Day: Is it right or wrong? An introduction to the hypothesis’. The day now involves 60 children from two schools, nine UCL graduate students from all walks of science and engineering, one Pewterers’ Fellow and a science demonstration expert from the USA (a.k.a. my father, an engineer and long-time teacher of after-school science clubs)... read more >>  UCL News