Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

REACH RCSI's Primary Science Initiative to bring science alive in classrooms

08 July 2011

Primary school teachers from around Ireland participated in the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) ‘Come to Your Senses' summer course which took place in the College from 5th-8th July 2011 and helps support the teaching of the primary science curriculum. The Primary Science for Teachers Initiative is a component of the REACH RCSI programme which promotes Recreation, Education and Community Health.

The course will use the theme of the human senses to enable primary school teachers to develop their interest and enthusiasm for teaching science with direct relevance to the primary science curriculum for Social Environmental and Science Education (SESE). 

Primary Science
Pictured (l-r) are primary school teachers Fiona De Brún, Gaelscoil Inse Chór, Dublin 8; Eimear Sally, St Laurence O'Toole's, Dublin 1; Mary O'Sullivan, Scoil Mhuire, Shankhill; with Dr Kenny Winser, RCSI Department of Physiology & Medical Physics.

The course promotes learning through doing, and provides teachers with practical experiments and innovative ideas that can be easily implemented in the classroom. 

Professor Hannah McGee, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at RCSI said "At RCSI, we are committed to the advancement of science and learning and this begins at primary school level. The ‘Come to Your Senses' course is a novel way for teachers to develop their science teaching skills, giving them the confidence and enthusiasm to conduct hands-on activities and experiments in the classroom which will inspire children to develop an interest in science."

Pictured with the primary school teachers who took part in the summer course are Dr Marc DeVocelle (front row, far left); Ms Maria Kelly (front row, far right) and Dr Kenny Wisner (3rd row, far right).

‘Come to Your Senses' is part of RCSI's Primary Science Initiative (PSTI) which aims to support the teaching of science in the classroom.  It is approved by the Department of Education and is fully funded by RCSI.  The RCSI PSTI team are Ms Maria Kelly, Dr Marc DeVocelle, Dr Maria Morgan, Dr Kenny Winser and Dr Jacqueline Daly. 25 primary school teachers will participate in this summer initiative.

Ms Maria Kelly, REACH Project Manager, said "The workshops will introduce primary school teachers to alternative, hands-on and fun ways of teaching science to children, without the need for expensive materials or equipment. The workshops ultimately aim to enhance the teaching of science in primary schools and encourage more children to take a greater interest in the subject."

REACH RCSI works in partnership with primary and post primary schools, youth and community groups together with the local community on the design and delivery of educational initiatives including Homework Clubs, Science Workshops, Sports & health programmes and an Education Information Service.