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News | Education 07.11.2014
Explore and Discover with Paper: Siemens Stiftung supports study for elementary school teachers in Bavaria
Siemens Stiftung, an impact-oriented foundation, in collaboration with the Bavarian Paper Associations and the Bavarian Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and the Arts, is launching the "Explore and Discover with Paper" project within the scope of the "Little Scientists' House" (Haus der kleinen Forscher) developed by the foundation and its partners. The competence-centric ongoing education project is designed to provide elementary school teachers with ideas and concepts for co-constructive learning. The ultimate purpose is to introduce boys and girls in elementary schools to the origins and applications of paper from various technical and scientific perspectives.
Paper is an inexpensive, versatile and practical material well-suited for experimentation and classroom use. Paper can be folded, pasted, cut and creased. It is ideal for training manual dexterity and aptitude. Furthermore, paper is a material that people encounter with great frequency every day. Paper is used or consumed in diverse ways in contemporary society: Newspapers, coffee filters, tickets, tissues, copy paper and banknotes are typical examples. Children are constantly in contact with paper products at school. Thus, they can transfer their project and classroom experiences to daily real-world scenarios with ease.
The "Explore and Discover with Paper" project aims to provide professional educators with ideas and inspired approaches for developing inquisitive, competence-oriented classroom experiences. The project was launched on November 5, 2014, at a kick-off event for some 175 educators in Munich, Germany. Georg Eisenreich, State Secretary of the Bavarian Ministry of Education, praised the project in his keynote as a significant contribution for bolstering the STEM disciplines.
During the podium discussion that followed, Dr. Barbara Filtzinger, Head of the working area Education at Siemens Stiftung, expressed thanks to the "Little Scientists' House" for successfully developing the project while highlighting the importance of paper: "Paper is a significant material involving many technical processes and aspects that is essential in our daily lives – mobiles or paper models of bridges, aircraft and automobiles designed for scientific research purposes are typical examples. Paper also helps explain phenomena in the natural sciences such as paper combustion or the function of blotting paper. And by folding and cutting paper, children can create geometric figures and thus discover basic principles that can be applied to their mathematical skills."