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Half Term STEM Fun – DNA Discovery

Last week LEBC’s STEM Ambassadors hosted a breadth of events to keep young people active and involved in STEM learning.

DNA Discovery is just one example! The event was held at three different libraries, and hosted 40 children aged 5-11 years old. The children loved looking at pictures of organs and cells, and learning about what they did. We talked briefly about Rosalind Franklin and her work on DNA, before building a sweet model of DNA. Children who made mistakes when building, learnt from the interactive experience, and learnt about DNA mutations as a result. Children then picked a species to create a DNA bracelet of a segment of code with some even challenging themselves to make a second strand showing the complementary base pair – fantastic work!

One STEM ambassador, Andrew went above and beyond when building the Earthquake proof towers and built his very own battery powered seismic shaker to ensure all towers got an equal force applied for the testing phase. The children’s eyes apparently lit up when they were able to place their tower on the seismic shaker and only 1 collapsed!

Andrew shared with LEBC why he wanted to get involved with the STEM Ambassador programme and activities such as the DNA Discovery session.

“I wanted to support this STEM session, as it is a great way for children to undertake a ‘hands on’ activity, in this case building Earthquake Proof Towers from readily available household items.¬† I gained confidence in being able to lead a STEM activity and the pleasure of seeing the students really enjoying the construction and testing phases too.”

Well done to the children and to Andrew for going that extra mile and making those children’s experiences truly wonderful!