Blog | Sharing science with Beavers
British Science Week presented the ideal opportunity for Group Scout Leader and neuroscience student Charlie to share his passion for science with Beavers and help them achieve their Experiment Activity Badge. We asked him about what they did and why.
“Enjoying fun science activities at primary school led me to pursue my career. I am a final year student, studying neuroscience and I hope to pass on my enthusiasm for science to our youth membership. An early introduction to science is really important to help encourage young people to develop curiosity about the world around them.
We spent the night exploring by doing, so the Beavers didn’t even recognise that they were learning. We helped the Beavers discover the function and complexities of the heart and lungs in a variety of ways. They made model hearts using just two bendy straws, a balloon, and a jam jar. It took around 15 minutes for us, a group of eight young people and one leader, to create our heart model. It’s a good idea to have the balloons cut in advance to save some time. Discovering the mechanics of the pump reinforced the role that the heart plays in the body and the reason for our pulse.
To end the evening, we observed the amazing properties of carbon dioxide using dry ice. Dry ice can be difficult to source but a quick search online can help. By adding warm water and detergent to dry ice we enjoyed creating loads of large cloudy bubbles. Each Beaver took a handful and had great fun popping them to release the smoke.
It is important to review what you have done at the end of the session to reinforce their discoveries and encourage further interest. Explain to your Beavers that science is responsible for all the technologies, treatments and medications many take for granted. Science can spark in children’s minds that they too could add to the collective scientific understanding, to help solve some of the world’s biggest problems.
Although these activities are ideal for completing the Beavers’ Experiment Activity Badge, they can also be tried with Cubs too and may meet some other Cub badge requirements.