Each year it is so encouraging to not only see schools that have really captured a whole school approach to engaging students in science through their successive Award applications, but also to see schools that are starting out this journey for the first time with a just few of their classes.

To ensure that we continue to recognise all this effort, two awards are available:

  • A Certificate of STEM work in School
  • A Plaque of STEM for deeper engagement, whole school involvement and external science engagement

For an introduction to the awards, see the Awards Toolkit series of tutorials.

 

SFI Discover Science & Maths Plaque of STEM

Involve most classes i.e. more than half the number of classes in the school in some aspect of the steps outlined below e.g. investigations, using ICT and maths, trips, speaker visits, presenting at or attending the science open day in the school or other events.

SFI Discover Science & Maths Certificate of STEM

Suitable for schools starting out on the STEM journey.  A minimum of two classes must participate.

See the Awards Toolkit for assistance with this step.

Provide evidence of the children engaging in science activities. You can come up with your own ideas for investigations or use the DPSM classroom activities guide, ESERO Ireland STEM activities, or any other resources available to you.

CERTIFICATE OF STEM

3 hands-on science investigations. These can be from any of the four strands:

  • Living things
  • Energy and forces
  • Materials
  • Environmental awareness and care​

PLAQUE OF STEM

1 hands-on investigation from each of the four curriculum strands (4 in total):

  • Living things
  • Energy and forces
  • Materials
  • Environmental awareness and care

AND Two or more of the following:

See the Awards Toolkit for assistance with this step.

Provide evidence of how the children used technology as part of their school work. By technology in this step we mean Information Communications Technologies [ICT]. coding, robotics or product design using materials (see list below).

CERTIFICATE OF STEM

1 or more examples of the children using Technology as part of their school work.

PLAQUE OF STEM

2 or more examples of the children using Technology as part of their school work.

Examples can include:

  • Record and analyse data collected e.g. a spreadsheet or graph
  • Develop a blog, website or video Use electronic components to build simple circuits
  • Use different materials e.g. wood, metals and plastics, for design and make projects
  • Take part in coding and computer science projects: National Scratch Competition www.scratch.ie, Hour of Code www.hourofcode.com/ie, EU Code Week www.codeweek.eu
  • Explore robotics e.g. First Lego League www.firstlegoleague.org
  • Engage pupils in the use of game-based learning such as Minecraft
  • Use microscopes during investigations
  • Participate in Tech Week in May 2019 www.techweek.ie
  • Explore renewable energy technologies e.g. Use solar energy kits, build simple windmills

 

See the Awards Toolkit for assistance with this step.

Provide evidence of how children investigated engineering in class or in the local area.

CERTIFICATE OF STEM

1 or more examples of the children investigating engineering in class or in the local area.

PLAQUE OF STEM

2 or more examples of the children investigating engineering in class or in the local area.

Examples can include:

  • Design and make activities e.g. making models (exploring, planning, designing, making, evaluating). For sample activities including design a bridge, a boat, a rocket, a water pump, a catapult, see the ’classroom activities’ section of www.primaryscience.ie
  • Investigate Engineering in your local area e.g. a bridge, a factory, a wind farm.
  • Investigate and develop an understanding of how everyday items e.g. bicycle gears work
  • Organise an event during Engineers Week 2019 or use the Engineers Week 2019 classroom pack

See the Awards Toolkit for assistance with this step.

Provide evidence of how the children used their maths knowledge and skills in practical ways

CERTIFICATE OF STEM

1 or more examples of how the children have applied their maths knowledge and skills in practical way

PLAQUE OF STEM

2 or more examples of how the children have applied their maths knowledge and skills in practical ways

Examples can include:

  • Use Maths skills and knowledge as part of Science, Technology, Engineering/design and make, or other activities such as baking or gardening e.g. ordering, measuring distances, capacity, weight, recording and analysing data. Using Maths operations; ratio, percentages, averages
  • Use Maths to record and analyse your science investigation results where appropriate
  • Take part in Maths Week 2018 www.mathsweek.ie
  • Develop a Maths trail around your school, see www.primaryscience.ie for templates
  • Use Maths in practical ways to help explore and solve real world problems

 

See the Awards Toolkit for assistance with this step.

Provide evidence for one or more example of how the children have presented and explained their STEM work to others (beyond their own class)

CERTIFICATE OF STEM AND PLAQUE OF STEM

Examples can include:

  • Show evidence of the children presenting their STEM work to other classes in the school
  • Hold a Science open day or evening where students present and explain their STEM work to the school, parents or the wider community
  • Participate in a joint science event with another school where students present their work
  • Take part in any science fair where the children can present and discuss their work e.g. ESB Science Blast delivered by the RDS, Junior Lego League etc.