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What unites school students, the CNP, crickets, cockroaches and the brain?

Students from the first Sciencecalifragilistic programme to show their work at a symposium in the Champalimaud Foundation.

  1. 7.5.2013

    After five months of scientific work, the results of the Sciencecalifragilistic project will be presented at a symposium in the Champalimaud Foundation at 3pm on May 11th. This will mark the culmination of the first cycle of Sciencecalifragilistic. The symposium programme includes a seminar on the “scientific method” by Prof. António Coutinho, presentations by CF researchers, Rui Costa and Gil Costa, and a poster session in which the students involved in the project will present their work and discuss the results with scientists from the CNP, teachers, colleagues and family members.

    Sciencecalifragilistic is an educational and scientific project developed by a group of doctoral and post-doctoral students from the Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme (CNP) and financed by the “Choose Science” programme promoted by Ciência Viva – the National Agency for Scientific and Technological Culture. This innovative project, launched in January 2013, has the objective of fostering critical and creative thought in secondary school students. This takes place in an environment of scientific investigation, involving the school community and CNP investigators.

    In this first edition, Sciencecalifragilistc took 12 students from the Dona Luísa de Gusmão and Miraflores secondary schools on a journey through the stages of the scientific method: the students begin by formulating questions and hypotheses before progressing to the experimental stage. In the laboratory some students observe cockroaches and crickets to study how signals from the brain can control leg movement; others taught snails using learning techniques of conditioning; and some focused on the study of electrical activity generated in the muscles, using it for electromyograms. The experimental work was then followed by an analysis of the results and discussions in the form of lab meetings.

    Now the moment has arrived for the students to present their conclusions in a symposium to their peers, like true scientists.

    For more information on Sciencecalifragilistic, please see: http://sciencecalifragilistic.pt.neuro.fchampalimaud.org.

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