European Researchers’ Night: discover science, meet researchers and have fun!
Friday, September 25, 2015 the 10 year anniversary edition of Researchers’ Night was celebrated in Romania and Europe in more than 300 cities. The European Researchers’ Night is dedicated to popular science and fun learning. All across Europe, during these events children and young people have a unique opportunity to meet researchers, talk to them, and find out what they really do for society, in interactive and engaging ways. This is done through hands-on experiments, science shows, learning activities for children, guided visits of research labs, science quizzes, games, competitions with researchers and more.
Our colleague, Anca Berlo has been involved as a volunteer in the planning of activities at the stand of the Center for Complexity Studies – UNESCO center in Bucharest, as well as at the event. This year’s event took place in the University Square between 5 pm and 10 pm and reunited activities from two concepts and separate curriculas: #doyouspeakscience and #researchers4humanity. During the evening, the participants at the center’s workshops and experiments could win at a raffle a place at an experiential education session.
This year, the Center for Complexity Studies – UNESCO center presented the following experiments and demonstrations:
1. Nexus experiential education workshop – Discovering the surrounding universe is, maybe, the most beautiful challenge a man can have. Sciences, music, mathematics, dance, physics, philosophy, astronomy, poetry or sport are just a few useful tools in this endeavour. Blending them, as a puzzle, creates an overall image that helps us discover the beauty and harmony of nature. After getting to know each others a little, children were invited by the trainers to a short debate, based on their own work, on themes crossing several disciplines.
2.Those fascinated by natural phenomena, thunders and tornadoes were invited to participate at experiments about self-organisation and connection with the phenomena in the atmosphere and the cosmic space. Chladni patterns (mini tornadoes) have been studied for the first time by the physicist Ernst Chladni (1680 – 1827) and represent an interesting visualisation experiment about organisation, self-organisation and collective dynamic processes induced by fields of acoustic forces. Thunders were experimented through the plasma globe. Dr. Mihai Ganciu from the National Institute for Laser Physics, Plasma and Radiations, Bucharest and Dr. Maria Ţiţeica have led the visitors’ steps through this fascinating universe.
3. DigiArtMath & Mathematics through art and games.
“DigiMathArt” is a course based on an attractive method of study and teaching of mathematics by using programming and computerised graphics. The course is destined to children 12 years old and older but also to adults, and has a role of developing intelligence, by creating neuronal networks, as it stimulates more cerebral areas than the classical method of studying mathematics. The version for children aged 10 to 12 is based on applications with an interface, that does not make necessary the learning of a programming language.
“Mathematics through art and games” is a course that teaches math through practical applications. Children have created clothing for dolls and cars based on geometrical images, they have baked pancakes, by measuring quantities! Coordinator of this workshop for the two activities was Roxana Draganoiu who has developed this teaching method since highschool and has been teaching math for 12 years already.
4. Those who were interested in robotics were invited to discover the RoboArt and the dancing – guitar playing robot. RoboArt is a new study area and refers to any art that incorporates any type of robot or automated technology. There are many branches of the robotic art, among which the robotic art installation, a type of art programmed to answer to the interactions of the observer through computers and sensors. The future behaviour of these installations can be modified through artist’s input or of the person’s it interacts with.
5. Wearable Culture Research – WCR is a project of the Center for Complexity Studies – UNESCO center in collaboration with “EMI – EVENIMENT MODA IMAGINE – The Center for the Research in the Fashion Culture at the National University of Arts in Bucharest and is coordinated by dr. Ioana Sanda Avram.
Through its vastness, the project overcomes the area of understanding of what is currently perceived as “fashion”, “clothing” or even “lifestyle”, since Fashion is the dominant cultural trend of an epoch, it manifests in every life aspect and is characterised through a state of social flux, with collective manifestations.
Presented at the European Researchers’ Night, the project was a first try in tackling the perspective of fashion ideas that may only find their answer and application through Complexity. It was a small step, of testing the interest, of positioning in a Complexity Culture, of finding potential partnerships with other areas of science and culture.
ABOUT: The European Researchers’ Night takes place every year all over Europe and in neighbouring countries the last Friday of September. The European Researchers’ Nights have been organised every September since 2005. In 2015, the event celebrated its 10th anniversary. About 1.1 million citizens and 18,000 researchers took part in the scientific events organised in over 300 cities within Europe and neighbouring countries. The events are supported by the European Commission as part of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, which is an EU funding programme to boost the careers of researchers
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