For 5 days, the Curiosity Cube® toured the capital and 3 locations in Madrid, allowing 1,366 boys and girls to take part in hands-on experiments. Students who had the opportunity to use ozobots, digital microscopes and other scientific tools to learn more about the microbiota. The aim is to arouse curiosity and passion for science at an early age in order to orientate students towards a career in the various STEM fields
A shipping container, designed by leading science and technology company Merck and converted into a mobile science laboratory, visited the community of Madrid for five days, enabling 1,366 boys and girls between the ages of 6 and 14 to take part in science experiments that make this possible Learn more about how the microbiota works in the body.
The Curiosity Cube® aims to instill curiosity and passion for science at an early age, to encourage these students to pursue careers in the diverse fields of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, for its acronym English). ). According to the EU STEM Coalition, the number of people working in this type of occupation grew three times faster than total employment in the EU last year. This increase in jobs means there is an urgent need to start training the next generation of scientists to fill this pool.
“The hands-on experiments in the Curiosity Cube® lab help spark little ones’ interest in science subjects because they can do very fun experiments, they start asking questions and they’re interested in knowing more. This curiosity will drive them to focus their studies on science and become the next generation to fill STEM positions,” confirms Enrique Berlanas, Life Science Director at Merck in Spain.
To achieve this goal, the Curiosity Cube® visited the Spanish capital along with three other locations in Madrid. In Tres Cantos it had the visit of students from the CEIP Carmen Hernández Guarch School and another day when it was open to all spectators. The CEIP Peña Sacra School in Manzanares El Real and the Alcalá School in Villaviciosa de Odón also got their students to experience first-hand how interesting science and technology can be, told by real scientists working at Merck in Spain.
The students who passed the “cube” during these days had the opportunity to learn more about the microbiota with the help of ozobots, digital microscopes and other scientific instruments in three hands-on experiments. In the first experiment, they worked with a ‘bacterial robot’, which they used to understand which factors influence a healthy microbiota and how they can improve their habits to take better care of their organism. In the second, they discovered the different types of bacteria that make up the microbiota and finally they were able to recreate their own microbiota and understand how their habits affect it.
For Victoria Guillén and Marta Gómez, Curiosity Cube® volunteers and Merck employees, “It was quite an experience to share these days with the hundreds of students who went through the Cube because they were excited about the experiments with robots and carry out chemical reactions. They were interested in everyone and asked a lot of questions.” Natalia Torres, a 5th grade elementary school teacher at Carmen Hernández Guarch School in Tres Cantos, echoed the same sentiment: She saw that her students were “enthusiastic are to see the Curiosity Cube®. In general they are very interested in science and the experience It was very satisfying. Making this lab available to students and being able to conduct live experiments helps them internalize all the knowledge they acquire in class and generate even more interest in these subjects.”
This promotion is part of a 70-stop European tour that also includes Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Liechtenstein, the Netherlands, Ireland, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.