SPEECH - Science Fun Day on Thursday 17th April 2014 at 10 30 hrs
Mont Roches Social Welfare Centre
DEAR PARENTS and STUDENTS
Good morning, it is indeed a great pleasure for me to address you today, in the context of this Science Fun Day at Mont Roches.
I am sure many of you here must be of the opinion that science subjects are boring and difficult to learn. But believe me; thanks to this new initiative of the Rajiv Gandhi Science Centre, by the end of this programme today many of you here will leave this place with a completely new and positive opinion about science.
Well let us all have a look at what makes subjects such as science, so difficult to teach and to learn?
No doubt many of the concepts in science are not quite as easy to learn via rote memorization or by simply reading about them in books. Moreover, the teaching of science has since long remained within the four walls of the classroom and incidentally, many have identified this to be among one of the main barriers to the learning science.
One of the main roles of a science centre is to devise new strategies in the popularization of Science and Technology. Furthermore, research in relation to learning processes has shown that science is a subject that is best taught by using hands-on experimentation and relating it to the physical world around us.
Science Fun Day
The aim of Science Fun Day therefore is to show the fun side of science. With activities designed to surprise, students and the public in general.
The whole idea is to ignite a series of questions in their minds. Why did this happen? It is indeed crucial that as a child you start asking questions about your environment. Why the sky is blue? Why the clouds are white? Why the plants are green? Well there so many things around us. And therefore the best way to understand and know about them is ask questions?
The concept of limiting the teaching or learning of science within the closed walls of a classroom is something of the past. There are lots of sciences around us. No doubt irrespective of age, the knowledge of a little bit of science can change our perspective about life and our whole existence.
The Science Fun Day therefore, is yet another attempt of the Rajiv Gandhi Science Centre to remove the fears and barriers in the learning of the Science related subjects. Once the child finds himself at ease in a more conducive environment the teaching and the learning of science becomes easier. I have been told that many of you here today, had the opportunity to see and participate in some simple science experiments, which you can later try at home. Many of you also were engaged in some fun activities like quiz and treasure hunt, which I am sure, must have refreshed your basic knowledge of science.
The Importance of Science and Technology
I am sure many of you would agree with me, it is extremely difficult to imagine of a world without science and technology. There are numberless inventions and discoveries that have made human life comfortable. No doubt science has done wonders for us. There is no sphere of life which has not been affected by Science.
The wide range of scientific inventions brought us to the era of Industrial revolution. Which in turn resulted in the fabrication of good cloth, matches, fountain pens and other necessary goods in huge quantities? Science has shortened distances. Sea transport became safe, quick and cheap so new continents were discovered. Now bullock cart and horse driven chariots have been replaced by cycles, motor-cycles. Cars, buses and scooters, steam ships and railways have made travelling safe, short and comfortable.
Therefore, the cloth we wear, the brush and toothpaste we use, the soap in our bathroom and all the appliances in our house are products of science. There is a lot of science all around us and just imagine how our life would have been without science.
Scientists of the month
1945 - John Ambrose Fleming died.
Fleming was an English electrical engineer who was the inventor of the thermionic valve vacuum tube as an electronic device. The device functioned as a diode used as a rectifier to convert AC current into DC current. Fleming's diodes were used in early radio receivers and radar systems before the invention of solid state semiconductors. He was also the originator of the familiar "right hand rule" used by mathematicians and physicists to determine the direction of vectors that are multiplied together.
1955 - Albert Einstein died.
Einstein was a German physicist who was awarded the 1921 Nobel Prize in Physics for discovering the photoelectric effect. He is also known for his general theory of relativity which ties the forces of gravity, electricity and magnetism together.
I therefore, seize this opportunity to invite you all to get inspired by the lives and achievements of these great personalities.
I thank the Rajiv Gandhi Science Centre for organizing this Science Fun Day and I hope you would all participate, play, listen, observe, reflect and have lots of fun as you discover the wonders of science.
And before ending, I would like to thank all the staff and members of the Mont Roches Social Welfare Centre for providing all their support and facilities for holding his event.