“THE YOUNG SCIENTIST PROJECT 3″
JANUARY, 2023 TO JUNE, 2023
Vratsa, Montana, Pernik, Gorna Oryahovitsa, Pavlikeni, Batak, Varbovka, Varbitsa, and Pleven Bulgaria
The Young Scientist Project is a children’s grass-root project run and implemented by Vox Tua, a nonprofit association passionate to engage, to educate and to empower children and the youth. The project is fully funded by the Embassy of the United States – Sofia. This project will focus on providing a range of interactive and fun activities to children in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade with the purpose to fuel and stimulate their curiosity and appreciation for careers in science.
The participants in the project will be students from 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade from ten schools in the following cities/villages: Pavlikeni, Vratsa, Montana, Pernik, Gorna Oryahovitsa, Batak, Vurbovka, Varbitsa, and Pleven. The project will reach a total of 1,615 students.
The project aims to inspire children from an early age to develop a passion for careers in the field of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). Through experiment-based courses, research kits, and YouTube videos, the project seeks to motivate children to science and to develop skills in making observations, creating scientific reports and evaluating results for the implementation of innovative solutions: basic and necessary elements of healthy professional development.
We have chosen to partner with ten schools. Four schools are from the municipality Pavlikeni, one school is from Montana, one school is from Vratsa, one school is from Varbitsa, one school is from Pleven, one school is from Gorna Oryahovitsa, and one school is from Pernik. The ten schools participating in the project are:
- SU “Vasil Kunchov”, Vratsa
- 3rd OU “Dr. Peter Beron”, Montana
- 10th OU “Aleko Konstantinov”, Pernik
- SU “Bacho Kiro”, Pavlikeni
- OU “Cv. Kliment Ohridski”, Pavlikeni
- OU “Cv. Cv. Kiril and Metodi”, Batak
- OU “Filip Totyu”, Varbovka
- SU “Paisii Hilendarski”, Varbitsa
- OU “Ivan Vazov”, Gorna Oryahovitsa
- NU “Patriarh Evtimiy”, Pleven
The Team Running the Project
The people leading the project are Luis Lomeli, director of Vox Tua, and thirteen students from Sofia High School of Mathematics as Project Managers and Volunteers. Luis has more than 16 years of experience in education and youth development around the world. As a volunteer for 2.5 years in the Peace Corps, he has developed a passion for running projects that aim to inspire children and young people to reach their full potential and to have a positive impact on their community. The students from Sofia High School of Mathematics are from 10th and 12th grade and have multiple honors in sciences and humanities as well as extensive experience in education and educational activities.
Structure of the Project
- The Project Managers will lead two-school-hour experiment-based- courses in each class.
- At the end of the course, each student will receive a scientific kit that can be taken home, with complete instructions for performing the experiments inside it. This will create a wonderful opportunity for parents to participate in their child’s learning development. Each student will have the materials for the implementation of three different experiments created by the project’s team.
- To stimulate the sustainable learning development of the participants, Vox Tua will create 10-13 videos on YouTube with new experiment ideas that children (and their parents) will be able to implement at home with limited cost and resources. All videos will be available free of charge. Full instructions on the experiments will be available for free download from the Vox Tua website.
Detailed Information About the Three Activities of the Project
“The Young Scientist Project” 3 has the goal of inspiring kids from middle school to develop and expand their interest in the various subjects of science.
1. The first activity, which the project provides, consists of interactive experiment-based courses that take place during two school hours, led by the Project Managers. The kids will engage in the activities with supplied materials, while in the process learning simplified concepts and terminology, directly correlated with the demonstration. The three experiments are:
- “Lava Lamp” (Chemistry) – The children will be introduced to simple chemistry concepts in a fun way. The appearing of bubbles after the introduction of a vitamin tablet to a mixture of oil and colored water creates a colorful lava lamp, displaying the difference in densities and the hydrophobic qualities of oil.
- “Balloon Car” (Engineering & Physics) – We face the wonders of engineering every day. With this interactive experiment the students will learn how to build a basic car model themselves. The car is constructed with simple mechanisms such as suspension and is driven by the deflation of a “balloon engine”, showing gas displacing.
2. The second part of the project consists of giving the kids scientific kits, designed and created by Vox Tua, which provide 4 additional experiments. In addition to all necessary materials there will be thorough and expansive manuals for the activity with educational information. The kits provide a perfect opportunity to engage the parents and to create a fun learning environment at home – the four experiments are:
- “Walking Water” (Chemistry) – Water is one of the most crucial resources we need to survive. In this experiment we can observe its qualities and interactions with different materials and how it seemingly defies gravity.
- “Magic Train” (Physics) – This experiment is designed to introduce important concepts in magnetism and electricity in a fun way. Creating your own electric railway may sound challenging, but with the help of science it is entirely possible, this experiment demonstrates the laws of physics key in construction.
- “Ping Ball Launcher” (Engineering) – Thanks to this ping ball launcher, which you will build yourself, you will have the opportunity to learn interesting physical concepts and facts while having fun with it. You may use the ball included to test your creation as well as experiment with it.
- “Stress Ball” (Physics) – This stress ball is a useful tool, not only for relaxation, but also for displaying the properties of cornstarch and exploring different levels of fluidity. This interactive experiment is the best way to explore a concept of Non-Newtonian fluids and get your hands into physics.
3. The third and final part of the project is the creation from scratch of 10 YouTube Videos. This is the sustainability part of the project that will provide important resources to the children and parents to continue building on the knowledge they acquired on the first two activities of the project. Vox Tua will create each video with a demonstration of a fun and educational science experiment that the participants and their parents can do from home with very limited resources. The videos will be engaging and easy to follow. Vox Tua believes that learning is constant action and does not required money but instead the wiliness to learn and drive to be the best version of oneself.