The House of Science was started in 2000 as part of the educational program of the Center for Cell-based Therapy (CTC), one of the Centers of Research, Innovation and Diffusion (CEPID). Since its establishment, it is coordinated by Professor Marisa Ramos Barbieri.
At the moment, the team relies upon the support of four students under scholarship and one assistant that develop a serie of programs which search for the interaction between teachers and students of Basic Education and prominent researchers in Brazilian Science.
In the permanent space for exhibitions, MuLEC (Museum and Laboratory for Science Teaching), the activities conducted have been reaching public and private schools. The proposal of working with after school programs of teaching support, specially in scientific initiation (less frequent nowadays at elementary and high schools), has the purpose of supporting the exhibitions.
The website of the House of Science is one of the foundations for its plan of actions. It is an interactive access portal where the visitor can be updated on what is new on Cell and Molecular Biology and they can also learn more about the programs offered.
The differential point of this portal is the participation of students from diverse programs in its development, thus it is the fruit of the interaction among reserchers, students, teachers and the House of Science, what makes its language more understandable and often desmystifying what is divulged by blogs and news agencies.
The Science Journal aims to support the teacher in the classroom, particularly regarding current themes, which the textbook does not cover or covers only superficially. All editions are printed and distributed free of charge to schools and are available on the House of Science website.
The journal has an editorial line designed to meet the demands of both students and teachers, contributing to their education and providing what is new, using a more understandable language. The Journal also possesses a complement (Science Track), written for students, where part of their activities in many programs of the House of Science is shown, always in an attempt to attract new students.
Folhetins are scientific texts written by researchers and specialists linked to the CTC group, they approach themes which have the aim of updating and increasing the knowledge of teachers and students. In addition to the publication that have already been printed, distributed, and tested, one can find there new material produced by post-graduate students of the Medical School of Ribeirão Preto (FMRP) and post-graduate students collaborating in the activities of the House of Science.
In a small format, with short and illustrative text, it invites to a fast reading and can be characterized by the diversity of theme concepts. Folhetins approach current scientific themes and promote a review of subjects and the understanding of basic concepts – generally poorly formulated in school books.
“Sheet” because it is the record of a moment considered to be significant when learning takes place. “Single” to facilitate the record throughout the learning process. The proposal is to mischaracterize the trend of Science Teaching marked by the content imposed by the Sciences, without considering the educational aspect. Because it is “single”, it encourages the investigation of its sequence according to the same methodology proposal that organizes all programs.
Programs of the House of Science
The Adopt a Scientist program proposes that students from elementary school attend meetings with undergraduate and postgraduate students. In these meetings, they bring specific subjects and discuss with students.
The goal of the program is to bring together academic science makers and young students of elementary and high school in order to make them think scientifically and to learn to develop concepts, in a pleasant and difficult way.
The programs predicts the development of scientific initiation by the students of public schools, as previously seen in programs like Caça-Talentos (Talent Hunt) (2001-2003), FAPESP-Júnior (2004-2005) and Pre-scientific Initiation (from 2009 up to now).
In this program, participating students develop a small scientific project throughout ten meetings, the projected is presented in a event by the end of the semester (Mural) to other students, employees, and researchers of the Center for Cell-based Therapy, Blood Center and USP community.
This program encourages research projects in schools, with the intense participation of the teacher and House of Science team. Encounters take place while students participate in the other activities offered. It is the teacher’s chance, supported by the House of Science team, to bring the research environment to school, strengthening science diffusion and dissemination and showing that the teacher, when supported, is capable of developing a serie of supplementary projects.
The Mural is an event organized by the House of Science that allows information exchange among students. It is the occasion when the students fully grasp the concepts learned during the semester. The students experience concept construction when they are presenting the outcomes of their activities with the projects of the House of Science.
It is about na activity of the program Adopt a Scientist which brings classical experiments of science proposed to students on the internet. This challenge is followed by a video that arouses curiosity and leads the student to learn more about the themes adressed. The activities are planned to be conducted at home.
Learning and fun are the foundation of this program, in which science aspects normally are left out of the classroom. This project playfully introduces science to students during their vacation time and shows a new way of learning without missing all the fun.
The House of Science has taken part in the National Week of Science and Technology (SNCT) since its first edition in 2004, always with activities that playfully introduce the population to science, and where of the the learning process is facilitated to arouse the curiosity students about diverse science paths, finding enjoyment in discovery.
The Celularium is an inflatable dome of 22m2, with a fulldome digital technology projector, that is used to exhibit a movie which stimulates the perspective of the public for the cellular universe. The movie, exhibited in 360º, simulates a trip inside the components of an animal cell. Conceived by the researchers of the Center for Cell-based Therapy, the exhibition invites the visitor to dive into one of the selective channels of the membrane until the cytoplasm, going through organelles, nucleus, participating in the arresting of extracellular particles by the lysosome.
The theme Cell, accentuated by the molecular area, is a current highlight in research and media. The understanding of basic concepts to grasp more complex subjects, such as gene therapy, stem cells and cancer, is fundamental to knowledge construction. Thus a tool like the Celularium becomes indispensable. This movie is the first produced in fulldometechnology for the biological area in Brazil, and the approval of CTC researchers granted the movie scientific rigor and excellence in graphic resources.
The Brain Week is an international event that unites universities, hospitals, governmental agencies, schools and professionals around the world in activities that have the aim of showing the progresses and benefits of research in neuroscience.
In Brazil, the Week is articulated by Sociedade Brasileira de Neurociências e Comportamento (SBNeC). The House promoted a special activity, every year, in the Adopt a Scientist program to integrate the national event.
The MuLEC has a space for permanent exhibitions where we hold activities that have attracted public and private schools. The proposal of working with extracurricular programs of teaching support, particularly in scientific initiation (nowadays not so frequent in elementary and high schools) has the purpose of supporting the exhibitions.
The Research and Teaching Laboratory receive groups of scientific pre-initiation of the Little Scientist Program in their weekly supervision meetings with researchers. This space is also used for the production of teaching material and support material for basic education lessons.