Schools sign up for museum cooperation program

More local students are taking part in a program organized by the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum and its natural history branch.
Ti Gong

A "Teen Scientific Explainer" presents her findings.

More than 30 schools joined a cooperation program with Shanghai Science and Technology Museum and its natural history branch yesterday, taking the number of participants to 161, the museums said.

The program, offering scientific courses for students and training for teachers, has been running for more than two years between the museums and local schools.

The day also saw another 10 museums and scientific facilities signing agreements with schools to share resources and awards given to outstanding student teams and teachers.

Shanghai Science and Technology Museum said it had built up cooperation with 129 schools in the past two years and trained 205 “museum teachers.” Over 50 courses had been opened at the museums, with 152 related courses provided at schools.

A “Teen Scientific Explainer” project was also introduced, encouraging students to carry out research using museum resources. So far, 384 students have been given the title.

One award-winning team from Shanghai Foreign Language School presented their research at the Shanghai Natural History Museum with a poster and a short play from television dating program “You Are the One.” It showed the courtship behavior of four different creatures.

The school-based courses require teachers to file topics and design their own classes with museum staff and using museum resources.

Zhang Chenyan, a middle school teacher, created a course on evolution. She encouraged students to think more deeply about the origin of humans and present their findings in creative ways such as role play, short plays and brief essays.

“In museums, teachers are no longer the authority of knowledge but a guide,” said Zhang. “They guide the students to do some individualized learning based on their interests, demand and points of view, which makes teacher-student and student-student communication more open and the brainstorming fiercer.”

Yao Qiang, deputy Party secretary of the science and technology Museum, said more than 12,000 students had benefited from the program in the past two years.

Ti Gong

The program allows students to research their projects using museum resources.

Ti Gong

Students from schools taking part in the program get down to work at the Shanghai Natural History Museum.

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