Making a difference
How do you inspire over 211,000 people to get excited about science? BASF’s passion for science is perhaps obvious but to share that with others is something special.
BY EMMA GREGORY
The Great Science Share for Schools (GSSfS) is an annual campaign, to inspire 5-14 year olds into science and engineering. The campaign provides a unique inclusive, non-competitive, and collaborative experience promoting opportunities for young people to practically engage in scientific investigations with peers, family, and teachers.
BASF has been a supporter and sponsor of the event since 2017 and the company is delighted at how many young pupils engaged with the campaign in 2021, which hit over 211,000!
Emma Gregory, External Communications Manager BASF UK & Ireland, was invited to be on an expert panel this year as part of the GSSfS activity-packed programme. The Derby High School, Bury, supported by a team from neighbouring Greenhill Primary School, pitched their ambitious goal of making their school a zero paper, plastic and food waste school by June 2022. “The passion of the ‘Changemakers’ to influence their school and their community was incredible to witness,” commented Emma. “Their questions to the panel were thoughtful and challenging. I wish them every success in what will be a rewarding year.” The team’s inspiration is to contribute towards Greater Manchester’s vision to become carbon neutral by 2038. They are GSSfS’s first ‘Changemakers’, running a project designed to allow young people to demonstrate leadership, scientific endeavour and engineering habits of mind.
Lynn Provoost, Assistant Headteacher at The Derby High School is a keen supporter of the GSSfS Changemaker programme. “Our partnership with the Great Science Share for School’s team provides our young people with rich and unique educational experiences which broaden their horizons and prepare them for the real world. Our Changemaker Ambassadors had an exciting and memorable experience. We are confident that their discussions with the expert panel have equipped them with the knowledge to inspire their peers to collaborate on The Derby’s Zero Waste Campaign. They relish the opportunity to return to the Great Science Share for the Climate Summit 2022 to share their journey.”
The campaign launched in 2016 and in those six years 410,202 young people have engaged with the Great Science Share for Schools. This year was a record year with 211,898 young people joining from around the world.
Campaign Director, Dr Lynne Bianchi, explains the vision behind the Great Science Share for Schools. “GSSfS is a timely campaign to engage whole school communities in raising the profile and engagement of young people in primary and secondary school science. With the status of school science lower than other core subjects, the campaign has shown to lead to more time for science learning in school and at home so that young people can ask, investigate and communicate their own scientific questions with new audiences. GSSfS stands apart by valuing children’s scientific curiosity and communication - placing it front and centre of this fast-growing campaign.”
Dr Geoff Mackey, Corporate Affairs and Sustainability Director, BASF UK & Ireland has been involved in the Great Science Share since the beginning. “Science is wonderful and it was fabulous to see so many young people get involved this year. I was particularly excited by the thought-provoking questions raised by students on the topic of Climate Change. This is today’s greatest challenge and we need people with innovative and bold ideas, our next generation of scientists, to tackle this challenge.”
There's more about the Great Science Share for Schools here
Editor's note: all photographs were taken in 2019, prior to Covid restrictions
Published 3 August 2021
For media enquiries or to repurpose this article, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org