Pollen Spreads Inquiry-Based Science Education throughout Europe
In recent years, ICT advancements have changed the way we think about science education in primary and secondary schools. Current expectations are that schools provide challenging environments for learners by teaching them valuable ICT skills whilst cultivating a desire for learning and discovery.
This case study reviews the activity carried out by Pollen, a European network for promoting Inquiry-Based Science Education. The Pollen pilot programme involved working with communities to develop a hands-on approach to science education in primary schools. During the project, ICT played a crucial role in supporting teachers, classes and the project as a whole. The result was a promising model for bringing ICT and innovative pedagogy together in ways that enhance pupils’ experience at school.
Pollen was a European research and development project supported by the European Commission Directorate-General for Research under the Science and Society part of the Sixth Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration activities. The project began in January 2006 and lasted three-and-a-half years. The research team was made up of a consortium of pedagogical and scientific organisations from 12 European countries and was launched in 12 European cities. Representing all areas of Europe (north, south, east and west), the network addressed their research questions in a diverse set of local educational contexts.