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House Of Science

House of Science

We aim to achieve that by resourcing and connecting the Local Science Community to create a nationwide education system that nurtures curiosity.   

RATIONALE 

We know what happened to the cat when it followed those inquisitive instincts, but for humans the act of investigation, exploration and discovery is crucial to our ongoing development and learning processes. 

Ironically, our education system ignores the nurturing of curiosity as a key platform for learning, at a critical time in children’s lives when they need it most. Our ability to think and communicate is vital to our survival, and a formal education – through an emphasis on reading, writing and maths – is how we best attain and develop these skills. However, the degree to which our curiosity is nurtured often sets the extent to which we desire to learn. 

The House of Science is proof that through the simple provision of inspiring educational science programmes and experiments, children are given an outlet for their natural curiosity and a platform for expanding that inquisitive nature. This assists with their learning across the whole curriculum.

BACKGROUND 

“In New Zealand, 73% of primary schools do not have an effective Science Programme in place” MAY 2012, EDUCATION REVIEW OFFICE 

“New Zealand’s education system is falling behind in Science and Maths” DEC 2012 HEKIA PARATA, MINITER OF EDUCATION 

“A growing number of schools are ditching Science from the compulsory curriculum in Year 11 because it is too difficult for some pupils. I believe it is vital that Science is recognised to be as important as Literacy and Numeracy.” SEP 2013, SECONDARY PRINCIPALS’ ASSOCIATION NZ PRESIDENT, TOM PARSONS 

The House of Science was established in 2013 by Chris Duggan with a vision to raise Scientific Literacy throughout the Western Bay of Plenty (WBOP) and to give children a place to explore, experiment and investigate science in all its forms. 

As a charitable trust, House of Science has the ability to connect the local community with science teachers and practicing scientists, and get them engaging in the field on a tangible and approachable level. 

The first House of Science was developed at and hosted by the University of Waikato’s Coastal Marine Field Station in Tauranga. It now has operational branches in Whakatane, Rotorua, Hutt Valley, Palmerston North, Wellington and Nelson. 

The team, which includes many educators and science professionals, has researched and developed a variety of creative resources for promoting positive engagement with Science. These include kits for in-classroom teaching, professional development programmes for teachers, out-of-school science programmes, community symposia and guest speakers. 

Since 2014, the House of Science initiatives have been successfully integrated into the teaching programmes of participating schools and the WBOP community. As a result, 81% of the region’s primary school children are exposed to the Science resources, with over 1000 students using them every week. 

The intended outcome of enhancing Scientific Literacy was to see an increase in the number and quality of students taking Science at senior secondary school level –

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Genera Managing Director Honoured

Genera Managing Director Honoured

Innovative

Congratulations to Mark Greenwood!
Mark is the managing Director of Genera Limited and was recently honoured to be appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Merit for services to Biosecurity.
ACC Award Winner

ACC Award Winner

The national awards ceremony, held in Auckland on Tuesday, saw company Genera take out the ACC Employer Award.

Genera was also recognised for its on-going inclusion of workers with disabilities, after securing a place in the top three last year.

Gavin Smales, Genera’s operations manager for the Napier Port Branch, said the award was great to receive, hiring good staff that were willing to learn and turn up and do the job simply made good business sense.

Genera employs five people with disabilities, and works with Workbridge Hawke’s Bay to look for great candidates. Smales said he recommended the approach to other businesses.

“We don’t change anything – we can’t afford to. But we can put people where we can use their strengths,” Mr Smales said.

Lynne Gibson, team leader of the Hawke’s Bay and East Coast branch of Workbridge, who nominated the company, said they couldn’t be happier.

“Gavin Smales is an excellent employer who takes people on their ability rather than their disability.”

Dan Buckingham, chairman of the Attitude Trust, said the Awards were about celebrating outstanding New Zealand achievements, as well as shining a spotlight on disability.

“We celebrated success and achievement across areas such as art, sport and the big one for us; employment and entrepreneurship. There were some spectacular moments on stage, with some very humble Kiwis getting the recognition they deserve.”

Unsung Hawke’s Bay heroes take out Attitude awards