One day prior to the start of the 2019 GYA Annual General Meeting, 11 GYA members from around the world participated in a science education outreach event, co-organised with the Francke Foundations of Halle, with children aged 6 – 12. Children could participate in both activities, making solar cells with berry juice and playing an exploratory, imaginative game, Expedition Mundus.

Expedition Mundus

Expedition Mundus, an inquiry-based science education game, was created to allow young kids to experience how it is to be a scientist. When playing the game, children think like scientists by formulating their own hypotheses, and act like scientists by testing their hypotheses and looking at previous observations.

Child playing Expedition Mundus
Playing ‘Expedition Mundus’ at the Francke Foundations, April 2019. Photo by Francke Foundations.

The Science of Light

In this activity, children produced working solar cells using berry juice, which then generated electricity directly from light. The activity demonstrated interactively with children the so-called dye solar cell, which consists of common household materials: in this case using dyes found in berries. Light arrives at the dye and can then be converted into electricity. The quickly produced electricity can then subsequently operate a device. Throughout the activity, GYA members discussed with the children what energy is, what we use it for, and where it comes from.

 

Making solar cells with berry juice
Making solar cells with berry juice at the Francke Foundations, April 2019.
GYA members, student helpers and translators and Francke Foundation staff, April 2019.
GYA members, student helpers and translators and Francke Foundation staff, April 2019.