About a hundred people gathered last Monday, 19th June, on the banks of the Cardener River in Manresa to attend the presentation of the field guide “Trees of the banks of the Cardener River”, which has been prepared by UManresa and the Valldaura School of Manresa. The Field Guide is the result of the collaboration between the students and teachers of the Valldaura School and the Horizon 2020 project “Communities for Sciences – Towards promoting an inclusive approach in science education” (C4S) led by UManresa, which was born from the scientific curiosity that the children of the School have developed for their natural environment.
Prepared by the children and the educators, with the collaboration of Pol Huguet, councillor for Green City and Urban Planning of Manresa City Council, and the members of the Manresa hub of the C4S project, the publication is a didactic resource that includes drawings by the student body and photos and useful information about the trees that grow on the banks of the Cardener river. It is in this natural setting where the presentation of the guide was made by the authors, which was enlivened by a route guided by the children around the banks of the Cardener and the municipality’s Fabrica dels Panyos. The event was also attended by Montserrat Pedreira, director of the UManresa Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education, Gabriel Lemkow, coordinator of the project “Communities for Sciences (C4S) – Towards Promoting an Inclusive Approach in Science Education” (C4S), and Miryam Navarro and Lyudmyla Kokorina, researchers of the C4S project.
UManresa will make this guide available free of charge to all schools in Manresa, as well as to all citizens interested in the natural heritage and biodiversity of the city, through the official website of the European C4S project: www.communities-for-sciences.eu. It is also planned to distribute this work at the Josep M. Aloy Documentation Centre for Children’s and Young People’s Literature at the UManresa, which has a collection of over 8,000 volumes of novels, short stories, plays and poetry for children and young people in Catalan.
“Communities for Sciences” (C4S), a project to awaken scientific vocations
The publication of the guide is the result of the inclusive scientific education pilot activities of the project led by UManresa C4S, which is part of the Horizon 2020 program, and which aims to promote science in an inclusive way among all the collectives of the society, especially those at risk of a vulnerable situation. The project also aims to make gender diversity and equality visible in science education, from an educational perspective.
The starting point of this project is the expertise of the teachers of the Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education at the Faculty of Social Sciences of Manresa and, more specifically, of the teaching staff and educators linked to Lab 0_6: Centre for discovery, research and documentation for science education at early ages, a physical space located at the university that collects a whole range of proposals related to experimentation and science, open to both school groups and families.
The celebration in Milan, Italy, of the general assembly of C4S, last May, puts an end to the activity of the project, which started its work on October 1, 2020, and which is expected to reach the following milestones in the coming months: the creation of an International Observatory for Inclusive Science Education and a white paper on inclusive science education, addressed to policymakers and educational institutions.