Children’s education charity, The Smallpeice Trust, and the RAF have joined forces to donate engineering-based ‘Think Kits’ to the schools remaining open to support vulnerable children and students of key workers, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In this time of need, many UK schools are continuing to provide emergency learning and support for children who have no other place to go. In recognition of the incredible work that these schools and teachers are carrying out, The Smallpeice Trust and the RAF have partnered to provide engaging science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) activities for groups of students.
The Think Kits include all the materials and tools necessary for groups of students to work in teams and build an electrically powered glider, supporting the development of their creativity and engineering skills while having fun in the classroom.
The RAF has generously purchased 50 Think Kits at a cost of £250 per kit and The Smallpeice Trust will match this with an additional 50. The Think Kits will be donated to non-selective state schools across nine regions in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The goal of the Think Kit challenge is to see which group’s glider can travel the furthest over two flights made within 10 minutes of each other. Students are involved with the complete design and construction process, enabling them to experience a hands-on approach to STEM.
The project will last up to a total of nine weeks; 20 students, split into five teams of four, will work on their own powered gliders. All students that finish their gliders will be eligible for a CREST Discovery Award and will receive a personalised certificate.
Dr Kevin P Stenson, chief executive of The Smallpeice Trust, said; “Giving students that are still in school, the opportunity to continue their STEM learning and develop a passion for engineering is a key priority for The Smallpeice Trust.
“We would like to show our gratitude and thanks to all schools and teachers for all of their efforts during this uncertain period, which is why we are donating Think Kits to all schools that remain open.”
Russell Barnes, Wing Commander at the RAF said, “In these difficult times we wish to support teachers by providing interesting and challenging activities that will offer a real educational benefit to students.”
The RAF, as well as The Smallpeice Trust, recognise the dedication and hard work being done by schools to support the nation’s response to COVID-19. Throughout these unprecedented times, teachers have shown their commitment to allowing students to continue their STEM education at school.
For more information on the Think Kits, please see https://www.smallpeicetrust.org.uk/think-kits