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Trinity College Dublin

NanoWOW

NanoWOW - Inspiring future scientists.

What is nanoscience? It is the science of the VERY small. Nanoscience is an exciting new field within materials science and is explored throughout the NanoWOW pack.

Designed for 5th and 6th class pupils the pack will introduce Irish Primary students to the world of nano and materials science. NanoWow is supported through funding by Science Foundation Ireland’s Education & Outreach programme.

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Materials science impacts virtually every industry and is changing the world around us. Nanotechnology is also already having major societal impacts from new technologies and advanced medical equipment to sports equipment and sun creams.

  • How are our computers and phones getting smaller and faster? Nanoscience!
  • What research area couldpotentially solve the problem of over 3 million people dying each year due to the lack of accessible, cleanwater? Nanoscience!
  • Would the children in your class like to replace their school books with one sheet offlexible, electronic paper? How would this be possible? Nanoscience!
  • What has the potential to provide fast germ detection and therefore allow instant diagnosis of a large number of diseases? Nanoscience!

Our Summer Course for primary teachers: Magical Materials - nano and materials science in the classroom, ran from the 7-11th July. The course introduced teachers to nano and materials science through the ‘NanoWOW’ resource pack. Future technologies, cutting edge Irish research, STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) career awareness and education techniques around exploring and learning about materials will all be featured in the course .

"Mind blowing insight into the world of materials. I'm going away with ideas on how to teach science in the classroom next year." - Catherine Brodie (Belgrove Senior Girls School, Dublin 3)

To request a copy of nanoWOW email - eilis.mcgrath@tcd.ie and let us know how you're getting on using the material by tweeting us with the #NanoWOW hashtag.

To view some sample lessons click here and here.

Have you used NanoWOW? Tell us what you thought of it in our online survey.

The structure of the NanoWOW pack

This pack has three core lessons that are recommended as essential lessons to introduce nanoscience to children.

Lesson 01: Introduction to nanoscience
Lesson 02: Scale
Lesson 03: Properties

The following six lessons provide structure and reinforcement of key learning objectives relating to nanoscience; they also allow teachers to choose additional nano related lessons. Teachers can select the lessons that they feel would be most suitable for their own classes in a ‘menu’ style approach.

Lesson 04: NanoWOWs
Lesson 05: Graphene
Lesson 06: History of science: Nobel Prize winner, Andre Geim
Lesson 07: Exploring nano images
Lesson 08: Nano and nature
Lesson 09: Nano on the net

The lessons in this pack are also designed to teach the children about science as a subject. The lessons promote science as a developmental, tentative subject while showing the children that science is a human endeavour and how we can learn from the history of science. Through research and investigations nanoscientists are actively trying to solve global issues, this teaches the children that science and society is linked. Teachers are encouraged to make these explicit links to the nature of science throughout the lessons. The aim is to enable the children to identify with how a scientist works and perhaps encourage them to think about choosing science as a subject in secondary school. For example, Lesson #8 encourages the children to carry out scientific inquiries themselves and lesson #9 is an internet
based, self-organised learning environment (SOLE) task.