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Vol. 26 No. 4
July-August 2004

Internet Connection | Providing brief overviews of helpful chemistry resources on the Web.

Kids and Science

Kids and Science (KaS) is about helping kids see, understand, and enjoy the science around them in everyday life. It is also about encouraging kids to make things better, even make inventions, because they are kids and they think like kids. Our challenge to kids is "Look around you, at all the things in your normal life, and think about ways to make something better."

The main feature of the KaS Web site is a Virtual Science City that provides kids with a choice of seven themes, presented as subway systems, on which the kids can travel and explore. Everything that kids see and know in their everyday lives can be found in one or more of these subway systems. There are a total of 71 stops along the subway system where kids can get off and look more closely at a particular issue in their lives. In the Forum section, they can start to ask questions, begin discussions with other kids, and also write their own articles about the way they see things happening around them.

KaS also provides kids a place to come together with the Science Village. Here, they can participate in hands-on workshops as young scientists. The Web site has pictures of the Science Village held in Austria in 2003. At these events, real scientists take kids on a journey into science. During these “summer camps,” kids can spend a fabulous week conducting experiments, carrying out research, and satisfying their curiosity. Of course the leisure time is packed with a lot of fun and many games, so the kids certainly don’t get bored!

KaS was made possible by funding from the European Commission (2003). Now the plans are to make KaS an international project, attracting kids from all over the world. The Web site is now in English and German, but soon more languages will be added. In the Forum section, kids can use whatever language they like. The important thing is for kids to have a place to talk to other kids and to write about things that really matter to them.

A new activity of KaS involves school projects in which kids come up with ideas for a better world, and then work with companies to develop their ideas into a prototype that they can test. Perhaps it is a new sort of sports shoe or a completely new soft drink? Whatever it is, kids can couple their science from school with their amazing energy and creativity. KaS is very happy to have contact with teachers around the world to set up these projects. We provide the platform where the kids can report on their projects. KaS is for all kids, anywhere.

For more information, contact Dick Wife (KaS coordinator)
<dickwife@compuserve.com>.

www.kidsandscience.org


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