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Secondary pupils present three 'urban inquiries' projects created through weSPOT at the International Conference on Technology Policy and Innovation

Chris Valentine, Friday 19 June 2015 | Annotate
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Seven secondary pupils and two Science Educators represented Stantonbury School at the ICTPI 2015 international conference today. They presented three urban inquiries on: Energy Consumption, Electric Cars and Solar panels. "Urban Inquiries" is an initiative coordinated by the Knowledge Media Institute, supported by Ale Okada, Alex Mikroyannidis and Annika Wolff. Its aim is to help educators and learners develop authentic inquiry based projects and promote Responsible Research and Innovation.
 
The theme of the 15th International Conference on Technology Policy and Innovation (ICTPI) focused on 'ICT and Science in a Complex World'. It attracted a large audience interested in: Education Futures, Smart Cities, New Economy, Data Security, Energy and MK: Enterprise Growth. This event also included a poster session on STEM Education in Schools, organised by Cliff Zintgraff (University of Texas), Gerd Kortuem and Annika Wolff (MCT, The Open University).

Among others,  a team from King Henry VIII School, Coventry presented their Robotic project, which was a finalist at the 2015 Vex Robotics World Championship. Wavendon Gate school demonstrated some games they have been making and Stantonbury school discussed their work related to the Urban Inquiries project, which draws on MK:Smart, WeSpot, ENGAGE and nQuire projects.
 
The first pilots of Urban Inquiries were developed by five researchers, two science teachers and a group of 26 students (13 years old). They used weSPOT and nQuire-it to develop their investigations and interact with researchers, science educators, non-academic experts and parents.

First, learners created scientific questions and collected data in weSPOT. Second, they discussed data to facilitate their analysis in nQuire-it. Third, arguments were co-constructed to support their evidence-based reports in Litemap tool. Three posters were co-authored by participants and presented at the ICTPI conference. Educators and researchers created the activities and provided support based on pedagogical approaches: Scientific Dilemma, Group discussion, Data Inquiry and Storytelling.
 
The Stantonbury School team was very excited to participate in an international conference. Young students mentioned that it was the first time they participated in an international event. “It was a great opportunity to discuss our projects, obtain interesting feedback and increase our network”.

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