Friday, September 28, 2012

Have fun learning ! Researchers' Night 2012

E eis-nos de novo a festejar A Noite Europeia dos Investigadores. A NEI é um evento europeu que permite a cientistas e público em geral conviverem num ambiente descontraído. 

A troca de ideias e experiências que a NEI proporciona pretende contribuir para a construção de uma imagem saudável dos investigadores junto do público e demonstrar que, afinal, a ciência não é tão complicada nem tão distante quanto se julga. 

A extensa programação nacional tem como objectivo mostrar ao público que os cientistas são pessoas comuns mas com trabalhos extraordinários.

A NEI 2012 celebra o 100º aniversário da participação portuguesa nos Jogos Olímpicos, as várias competições desportivas internacionais onde o país participa e a importância do desporto para a qualidade de vida.

Assim, a NEI dedica a edição 2012 à relação entre Desporto e Ciência

NEI 2012 Universidade do Porto

A Universidade do Porto propõe a exposição O Corpo que terá lugar nas Arcadas do edifício da Reitoria da Universidade, a partir das 18 horas. Mas há muito mais! É só consultar a programação aqui

Para participar em outras actividades, dirija-se ao espaço aderente mais perto de si e vá falar com investigadores, conhecer o seu trabalho, vida, anseios e paixões.


É sem dúvida uma noite diferente  que nenhum professor quer perder, fazendo-se acompanhar  dos seus alunos numa experiência pedagógica prática sobre a Ciência. Seria imperdoável perder a oportunidade de participar de uma aula viva. Os professores curriculares Ciências e Física poderão acompanhar as suas turmas, e por que não solicitar o apoio de alguns pais voluntários. Consultar mais aqui

Utilização telemóveis e redes sociais:

Insisto na utilização dos telemóveis em lugar do velho bloco de notas, bem como o uso das redes sociais para partilhar experiências entre escolas: Facebook ou Twitter hashtag #Nei2012Portugal

Não deixe de ver o video  "Noite Europeia dos Investigadores provoca encontro da Ciência no Porto" aqui

"Exploring science through fun learning"

And today we are celebrating a special night! Yes, the Researchers' Night 2012

The Researchers' Night is an event bringing together the public at large and researchers. It occurs annually on the fourth Friday of September, the 28th, all over Europe. 

Its main objective is to reveal scientists and science in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. 

The Researchers' Night offers the opportunity to discover research facilities that are usually not open to public such as:
  • laboratories; 
  • research centres;
  • museum collections;
Families and schools can use the most recent technologies and instruments with the guidance of scientists, participate in experiments, competitions and quizzes, watch demonstrations and simulations, exchange ideas and party with the researchers.

Exciting, isn't it? You do remember my post European Researchers' Night 2011It was a fantastic night!

Often billed as family events, Researchers' Night will in fact appeal to people of all ages, whether with their family, school, friends or on their own, who are intrigued by how things work and by what science means for their lives

So, you won't miss the Researchers' Night 2012! This is a mega event taking place every year on a single September night in about 300 cities all over Europe.

What do researchers really do and why does it matter for your daily life?

  • How is our universe built?
  • How are crime mysteries solved through science?
  • What is your DNA like?
  • Is climate change really happening?

Find out this and more through behind-the-scenes guided tours of research labs that are normally closed to the public, interactive science shows, hands-on experiments or workshops.


A different and exciting Sciences lesson. A live lesson! Teachers and students can join other groups of students and educators that will be for everywhere  participating in this awesome live pedagogical experience.

Let your students meet the real scientists, talk to them, make some curious questions, understand the real meaning of Science.

Do you want to take part of an event in your city? Alone, with family or school class? Find an event near you!

Mobile devices & social media:

Of course tablets iphones and smartphones are allowed. Great tools (no more paper notebooks) to capture the most important moments of the night and to discuss next week in the classroom at sschool.

Social networks as Facebook profiles from a lot of European schools or Twitter profiles linked to Researchers' Night 2012 will be a good resource to contact other schools and share experiences.

Have fun learning!


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Noite Europeia dos Unvestigadores 2012

Researchers' Night 2012

Researchers' Night: one night 300 European cities

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Let's celebrate the European Day of Languages

European Day of languages

"Europe is rich in languages – there are over 200 European languages in daily use and many other languages are spoken by citizens whose family origins are in other continents. 

Respect for cultural and linguistic diversity and support for language learning are at the core of the work of the Council of Europe."

Snežana Samardžić-Marković
Director General of Democracy of the Council of Europe

At the initiative of the Council of Europe, Strasbourg, the European Day of Languages has been celebrated every year since 2001 on 26 September.

Following the success of the Year, the Council of Europe declared a European Day of Languages  to be celebrated on 26th of September each year. 

  • The general objectives of the "European Day of Languages" are:

  1. Alerting the public to the importance of language learning and diversifying the range of languages learnt in order to increase plurilingualism and intercultural understanding;
  2. Promoting the rich linguistic and cultural diversity of Europe, which must be preserved and fostered;
  3. Encouraging lifelong language learning in and out of school, whether for study purposes, for professional needs, for purposes of mobility or for pleasure and exchanges.

"Linguistic  diversity is an important resource to be recognised, valued, used and cherished. Language learning brings benefits to all ages – no one is too old to learn a new language and  enjoy the opportunities it opens up. Learning other peoples' languages is another way of helping us to understand each other better and overcome our cultural differences."

Snežana Samardžić-Marković
Director General of Democracy of the Council of Europe


"Plurilingualism is much more the normal human condition than monolingualism. There are millions of people who think they know no language other than their mother tongue; however many of them know some level of another language. And yet the opportunities to learn a new language are today greater than ever."

On the occasion of the European Day of Languages, a range of events are organized across Europe. 

Activities for and with children in schools, television and radio programmes, language classes and conferences. 

In order to learn more about language diversity students can take part in different activities proposed by their teachers or following a school project. 

Of course, it is important that you include ICT & social media into your lessons, such as:

  • Facebook,
  • Twitter, 
  • Instagram, 
  • YouTube.

In the classroom - Some Activities:

  • First of all, let the students discover some Language facts as a motivation for EDL 2012;
  • Games: students can find some games on Kid's Corner to play and learn  about EDL;
  • Traditions: invite students todo a research about European traditions and share national traditions between different European schools;
  • Music: organize a musical event to promote Languages curriculum (mother language, foreign languages) as a cross-curricular activity and share such performances with other students via EDL website;
  • Quizzes: motivate the students to create their own quizzes by watching some here;

  • Movies: showing movies in different languages and promoting some activities about the language(s) of the movie(s);

  • Language café or breakfast in school canteen serving specialties from a range of countries, inviting colleagues and teachers;
  • Blogs: introducing social media in Languages you can invite students to start a blog about European Languages;*
  • Intercultural exchanges: students love exchange projects, contact with other students, discover their interests, learn foreign languages.*

* In French and Portuguese curriculum, my students had good exchanges with students from several European schools from Austria, Romania, Spain, Italy, Switzerland (by email or/and by letters), and a school exchange project with Holland. Read some impressions about this last one.

Blogs are an interesting activity to include IT into Languages curriculum (mother language or/and foreign languages)

In 2005, a group of students aged 10-13 started a blog as an activity for the European Day of Languages.

Dia Europeu das Línguas 2005 was the first project IT & Languages in secondary education.

By groups, they chose a country and elaborated a post where it should appear  the word "Hello" (translated), the flag and a tradition. You can watch here for example, but feel free to watch other ten countries in different posts.

Among the students, there was some students with special needs, and they really were well integrated in the activities.

In 2006, 2007, different students continued the project. In 2008, we celebrated The International Year of Languages

Students like to communicate and interact with other students from European schools and countries, So, they can get a taster of the various languages of Europe. 

How to participate:

There are a vast number of ways in which you can celebrate the European Day of Languages depending on the level you teach, the time and means you have available.

Read more here

How to promote:

Your school wants to promote the events of your students? Right! Fortunately there's plenty you can do to publicize your initiative. Let's give it a start here


Ask your National Relay for posters, logo, stickers, lanyards here

National Relays:

National authorities and the various partners are given a free hand to organize activities. 

To coordinate the activities organised at national level, the Council of Europe asks participating countries to nominate National Relay Persons for the EDL. 

The function of a Relay is to act as a multiplier for organizations, schools and association.

Please find you National Relay here

  • Some important links for Teachers for EDL 2012:

European Day of Languages

Council of Europe - Edication and Languages

Portail Langues | Académie de versailles (Français)

EUROCID | Centro Informação Europeia Jacques Delors | Português

"Everybody deserves the chance to benefit from the cultural and economic advantages language skills can bring. Learning languages also helps to develop tolerance and understanding between people from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds.



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Thursday, September 20, 2012

The European Union Contest for Young Scientists

The 24th edition of the European Union Contest for Young Scientists (EUCYS) will take place in Bratislava, Slovakia, from 21 until 26 September 2012.

The EUCYS – European Union Contest for Young Scientists is an initiative created by the European Commission in 1989.


Promoting the science interchange between young scientists and guiding them to a future in science and technology.

The event is an annually held exhibition of the finest work developed in many scientific fields, and given its nature as a competition.

The best young minds of different countries can compare ideas and admire each other’s work, thus bringing great interest upon the contest by the international and local communities and press.

The EUCYS is, yet, an opportunity for the young students, who have reached a prestige position in their home countries, to exchange new ideas, share common interests and gain experience from an event which involves some of the most foremost european scientists. 

The outcome is a significant endorsement by the European Commission, of the work and development achieved in each participant country, to guide and promote more and more young people to careers in science and technology.

Being an international contest, the EUCYS integrates in the activities of Science and Society managed by the Directorate General for Research and Innovation of the European Commission

Within the Framework Programmes for the Research and Technological Development and in the European Development Area, Science and Society strives to build a solid link between scientific endeavour and the general european community.

For EUCYS 2012 have been approved 83 projects from 37 countries. You can find the complete list here

Projects :

From Portugal there are two projects selected by the National Organizer:

1. Armindo Picão Fernandes, Mariana Azevedo dos Santos, Ricardo Picão Fernandes:

"Flies on the phone (Biology)"

The potential adverse effects of radio frequency radiation (RF) emitted by mobile phone use on male reproductive function are widely reported in the literature. Read all the details here 

2. Daniel Ricardo Lucas da Silva, Lúcia Filipa Ribeiro Martins, Marlieke Anne Maria Pronk: 

"Impact of invasive flora in riparian ecosystems in Odemira (Environment)"

The goal of this project was to study the influence of the Acacia invasion on the biodiversity of riparian ecosystems in Odemira. We selected as biodiversity indicators two groups of living beings: plants and arthropods.  Read all the details here


The role of the Jury of the European Union Contest for Young Scientists is of utmost importance. The Jury assesses and scores the competing projects based on their written description (before the Contest) and through interviews with the Contestants carried out at the exhibition during the Contest. 

You can find the Jury here


The participants compete for a number of 'core' prizes on the basis of a written description of their work, their exhibited material and the interviews with the Contest Jury. 
In addition to this, a limited number of 'special donated' prizes are also awarded by the Jury, to offer some winners the opportunity to benefit from the specific experiences linked to these prizes. It is up to the Jury to decide whether a prize-winner can receive both a core prize and a special donated prize.

Find here the complete list.

Host organiser

The Host organiser of the 24th EUCYS is The Young Scientists of Slovakia in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport of the Slovak Republic.

The 2012 Intel® Educator Academy EMEA meeting will be held in Bratislava, Slovakia, on September 23-26, along the "European Contest for Young Scientists" (EUCYS). 

The strategic partners of his year's edition are: EUCYSEuropean Schoolnet and the Young Scientists of Slovakia. 

Award Ceremony: 

The Award ceremony & reception takes place on Tuesday, September 25th 2012.

My thoughts: 

Contests are always important activities in the curriculum. Students are encouraged to demonstrate the inner creativity to develop their competences as innovators.

Of course an internationqal contest, in this case an European contest, is an opportunity for the young students, who have reached a prestige position in their home countries, to exchange new ideas, share common interests and gain experience from an event which involves some of the most foremost european scientists. 

Let's stay attentive to the young scientists winners.

“Vision without action is a dream. Action without vision is simply passing the time. Action with Vision is making a positive difference.” 

Joel Barker


copyright © 2012G-Souto'sBlog, 

Licença Creative Commons
The European Union Contest for Young Scientists bG-Souto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.