We are now taking class reservations for this academic season. Fieldtrips will run from January to June 2014, and generally occur on Mondays. You can email Dave Ng (db@mail.ubc.ca) to be placed on this registration list.

Presumably, art and sciences can interact a little like the image above? Since 2008, The Science Creative Literacy Symposia field trip program has been offered at the University of British Columbia, with the intent of providing an engaging interdisciplinary outreach experience for students at the Grade 5/6/7 level. Here, the fieldtrip combines elements of science exploration with expository creative writing with the aim of fostering skills in written literacy, scientific literacy, as well as develop appreciation in interdisciplinary connections and creativity concepts. For a sense of where the idea came from, click here (hat tip to 826National).

Hosted by the Michael Smith Laboratories, and by the fine folks from the UBC Creative Writing Program, the field trips will be held at the Michael Smith Building. Both authentic research laboratory settings as well as spaces conducive for reflective writing activities will be used.

Each session involves a class of Grade 5-7 students (about 30 max), and will encompass a 10am to 2pm timeframe – this includes a lunch break of 15 to 20 minutes somewhere in the middle (indoor room provided if needed). Basically, the session will be run by two instructors; one a Graduate Student within a scientific discipline, and the other a Masters of Fine Arts student within the Creative Writing program. Each session will be designed to allow the elementary students to play both the role of the scientist (perform a science experiment) and the writer (engage in a reflective writing exercise), with efforts to provide linkage between the two skill sets. As well, it is hoped that there will be an outlet for publication of some of these works from these sessions (at the Science Creative Quarterly,copyright to remain with the student). The fieldtrip is free (first come first served in terms of bookings), although transportation and lunch is not provided.

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TBA Note that we will likely be holding all SCLS field trips on mondays. If you’re interested in booking, we are currently taking names of interested teachers. We plan on holding a maximum of 12 sessions during the second semester (January 2014 to June 2014).

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Some detailed logistics (forms, scheduling, directions):

Science activities include: (1) DIY Cloud Chamber Lab, (2) Biodiversity Microscopy Lab, (3) Genomic DNA isolation Lab
Writing activities include: (1) Screenplay writing (and performance), (2) Choose your own Adventure Class Book, (3) Poetry (slam poetry).

At this point, we are unable to accommodate specific requests for activities.

We ask that (if possible) a consent form be filled before coming to the lab. This form allows us the option of presenting the student’s quality work to a wider public. This will be for strictly non-commercial first publication use. Copyright of pieces produced will thereafter remain with the student(s).
(full details and pdf of consent form – click here)

9:45am – 10:00am: Meet at the foyer of the Michael Smith Building (link to directions can be found here)

10:00am – ~11:45am: Some combination of science and/or writing activities. Likely, the majority of time will focus on the science experiment which will vary according to the instructors present.

~11:45am – 12:15pm: 15 to 20 minute lunch break. Lunch is not provided, but space for lunch sitting is there if needed.

12:15pm – 2:00pm: Some combination of science and/or writing activities: Here, it’s likely most of the time will focus on the writing exercises, which also will vary depending on the instructors present.

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Note that we are especially keen to attract teachers who are interested in developing a relationship with the program. This is because we are currently initiating a research project around issues regarding authentic science education and the role of creative impressions (see this open research link for more information).