16 Mar 2021
A big thank you to all the STEM Ambassadors who have taken part in virtual events, whether that is a short ‘Take a Look’ video on Ambassadors@Work, or an in depth practical task on STEM@Home. Your work is amazing and you are making a difference.
With the constant debate about the pandemic generation, it is great to receive positive feedback on how STEM Ambassador volunteers are improving opportunities for young people. I met with a group of teachers this morning, all of whom have used your virtual STEM inputs. Their feedback was that the pupils were engaged, but importantly so were their parents. With research showing that parents who are involved in learning increase the Science Capital of the children, and those students with the greatest Science Capital go onto to achieve in STEM, this is welcome news.
We have also received emails from parents, one in particular that made me smile said that by doing one of the tasks on STEM@Home, “There was a serious chance that they might have learnt something today!”
So if you are wondering what impact you have, it is huge: more than 100,000 downloads of virtual materials, thousands of children’s questions about activities and written responses from young people; one student who wrote 600 words to explain what one activity had meant to her (the teacher was amazed!). More than 77% of secondary schools and 60% of FE settings have engaged with STEM Ambassadors since last April, and 42% of primary schools – which is more than last year!
The team might not be travelling across the region, which has benefits for the planet, but it also means there is money for books for children. Books are being posted out to both primary and secondary pupils across the region weekly.
Keep up the good work and feel proud that you are helping our young people at what might be their most challenging time. If you have yet to offer a virtual STEM activity, there is still time, and if you have, you can check on the downloads. We will be a blended offer for next year which we will discuss on the next STEM Ambassador ‘What’s New’ session on Tuesday the 27th of April 2021 at 12, more details to follow soon.