I’ve started looking forward to setting my alarm for early wakeup on Saturday mornings. For the past month and a half, the Scientific Cultural Society and I put on a 2 hour workshop every week for Syrian refugee kids in partnership with Syria Bright Future.
Syria Bright Future is an all-volunteer organization run by Syrian psychologists and psychiatrists to provide mental health services to Syrian refugees in Jordan. They bring in groups of 25-30 kids every Saturday morning for fun science stations with us.
This week, we had five stations: one where kids learned about batteries by creating their own with lemons, pennies and nails.
Kids learned about measurement (and theoretically, vibration) by creating their own pan pipe made out of drinking straws.
At one station, kids modeled the lifecycle of a butterfly with pasta.
At a fourth station, kids are challenged to build the tallest marshmallow tower possible and to have it withstand a jello earthquake.
And finally kids learn about fingerprints and investigate the patterns of their own fingerprints.
It is my dream to expand the program to include longer sessions and to have kids come back week after week. That way they could really explore in more depth the topics they are interested in, and develop important skills; particularly, the skills used to gather information about the world, the skills needed to make sense of the information they gather, and then the critical thinking skills to apply information in new situations and in solving problems.