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A unique new outreach campaign with the goal of raising awareness about the world-leading climate change research in Manitoba’s Arctic launched Friday.
Expedition Churchill: A Gateway to Arctic Research is highlighting the research being done in the Churchill and Hudson Bay region by scientists from the University of Manitoba.
The project includes a new Arctic research-themed dining car that will travel the rail line between Winnipeg and Churchill as of Sunday, coinciding with the long-awaited return of passenger rail service to Churchill.
In addition to the train, a multimedia e-book and interactive kiosks will be located throughout the province, including at the zoo’s Journey to Churchill Exhibit, Travel Manitoba, James Richardson International Airport, the Town of Churchill, the Churchill Northern Studies Centre, and in the Wallace building on the U of M campus.
David Saint-Jacques also given an eagle feather and a Mi'kmaw name.
When Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques blasted into space Monday on his way to the International Space Station, he took with him some symbolic Mi'kmaw items.
Tucked away in his gear was an eagle feather and a miniature, handmade basket created out of wood from a black ash tree.
"The one that is travelling in space with him now is a tiny little basket the size of a loonie," said basketmaker Shanna Francis of Eskasoni First Nation in Cape Breton.
"I made it a few years ago and it has a new home now. It's in space."
Francis joined many other Indigenous people inside a theatre room at the Discovery Centre in Halifax to watch the rocket blast off from Kazakhstan.
"It makes me believe that anything is possible," said Francis. "I hope it might in some way open new doors for the youth in our community."
Many others took in the launch at the Membertou Trade and Convention Centre in Cape Breton.
"We try to light the embers of creativity and imaginations for these kids," said Christopher Googoo, chief operating officer of Ulnooweg's Digital Mi'kmaq program, which aims to bridge the digital divide faced by Indigenous youth.
"We'd like to see them pursue being an astronaut because that pursuit will get them into things like mathematics and engineering."
This past year, the Canadian Space Agency and the Digital Mi'kmaq program collaborated on a robotics program and the partnership led to the basket and feather being given to Saint-Jacques.
Some residents in Tuktoyaktuk, N.W.T., will soon have the skills to monitor climate change in their community, as part of a new program.
"It's important that people know exactly what is happening and the changes, and what is being impacted here," said Shaun Cormier, project manager for the Tuktoyaktuk Community Corporation.
Cormier said the hamlet was one of several communities selected across Canada for funding that would go toward a community-based monitoring program.
The committee put together an event in the fall called World Café on Climate Change, which helped launch the project.
"We just talked about climate change basically for two to three hours and formulated discussion around different topics in the community," said Cormier.
He said about 50 people of all ages showed up and shared their knowledge and their questions in regards to climate change.
Cormier said the hamlet has teamed up with the Aurora Research Institute based in Inuvik, where they are putting on a training session over the weekend so community members can learn how to monitor.
“We are hosting Science North at Science Timmins for a butterfly pinning workshop,” said Antoine Garwah, president and chief executive officer of Science Timmins.
Science Timmins has something fun for grandparents to do with their grandkids (ages six and up) this Saturday.
The workshop involves pinning real butterflies in shadow boxes. Participants will take home the shadow boxes after the workshop. There will also be camouflage games and other activities. Participants will learn about pollinators and experience how pollinators see ultraviolet pollen trails on flowers, using UV flashlights.
The workshop will be offered twice. The first workshop will be from 10 a.m. to noon and the second will run from 1 to 3 p.m.
Working in collaboration and hosting events with the Sudbury-based Science North is not unique for Science Timmins.
In the last month, Science Timmins has been promoting a “nature exchange” program that was initially developed by Science North. The Science Village in Timmins is now one of a number of science centres, libraries and facilities across the North that are now linked in on the same database.
“Northern Nature Trading is a special kind of swap shop,” explained Mason Charbonneau, a science communicator with Science Timmins. “You can bring in the natural things you’ve found and trade them for things in our collection. You can bring rocks, minerals, anything from nature you can take without destroying nature.”
For example, they don’t want people bringing in birds’ nest, eggs, living plants or animals, or even dead animals.
A new program at Calgary’s TELUS Spark hopes to make talking about mental health to children easier by adding science and fun exhibits. The Science of Mental Health workshop is geared toward youths, teachers and professionals to explore what is happening in their brains and bodies when dealing with stress.
“We have people being aware of how they’re reacting, and the link between the stimulus they’re feeling in their minds, hearts and bodies, so that they’re able to bring that back under control with breathing techniques and awareness,” said Dr. Elka Walsh, Telus Spark’s chief education and learning officer, on Wednesday. She said teaching resiliency techniques to manage stress helps kids not to fear putting up their hands in class or stumbling during hockey practice.
Walsh estimates that by the end of the year, about 500 young people will have engaged in the workshops. Throughout her 20 years in education, Walsh has seen the stresses mount for both youth and adults, and said TELUS Spark wanted to contribute to something bigger. “If we can come together as Calgarians, we can have an incredibly mentally healthy, destigmatized community that really enables each other to be our very best and our authentic selves,” she said.
CASC, in collaboration with the Canadian Space Agency, will host a webinar in late January (exact date to be confirmed) addressing the value of satellites in our daily lives, the upcoming RADARSAT Constellation Mission that will launch in February 2019 and the soon-to-be-released CASC activity kit for educators to explore what a day without satellites would be like and how that might happen.
The third annual International Science Centre and Science Museum Day (ISCSMD) proved to be another great success! On November 10th, 2018, Science Centres and Museums across the world participated in this celebration of Science as a Human Right, promoting the role we play in reaching the Sustainable Development Goals put out by the UN.
Among those participants were members of CASC spanning across Canada:
Big Little Science Centre
Okanagan Science Centre
Science World British Columbia
TELUS World of Science — Edmonton
Saskatchewan Science Centre
Armand Frappier Museum
Canada Agriculture and Food Museum
Canada Aviation and Space Museum
Canada Science and Technology Museum
Montreal Science Centre
Musée de l'ingéniosité J. Armand Bombardier
Ontario Science Centre
Sherbrooke Museum of Nature and Science
• Science East
With this year’s theme of Science as a Human Right, these institutions served as places that contributed to the use of science for the creation of a better world through engaging scientists, inclusions efforts, gender equality initiatives, and other programs and exhibitions full of empowerment in the world of science.
Science Centres and Science Museums can be found all over the globe and they welcome millions of visitors each year who seek information and support to make changes in their communities. ISCSMD is also a reminder to everyone about the universality of science with the ability to build bridges across cultural, geographical and religious boundaries and also addressing common concerns.
This is a reminder that the 2018 CASC Reciprocal Admission Agreement will be ending on December 31, 2018. The 2019 CASC Reciprocal Admission Agreement will be available January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019.
If you are a member of a Science Centre, Museum, Aquarium, Planetarium or Maker-space you could benefit from our reciprocal admission agreement. Not yet a member of a Canadian Science Centre - Find one near you!
Any of CASC's Full Members can apply to be part of the reciprocal agreement. If you are interested in having your organization appear in the reciprocal agreement, please send an email to email@example.com your request.
The reciprocal agreement entitles CASC institution's members (i.e. families and individuals) benefits when they visit other CASC member institutions across Canada - Like FREE General Admission!
Not a member of CASC? Join us in 2019 and offer your members this great membership benefit.
Laurentian University Science Communication Program, offered in partnership with Science North, is the 2018 recipient of the Royal Canadian Institute for Science’s William Edmond Logan Award, recognizing excellence in promoting the public understanding of science by a Canadian organization.
Laurentian Science Communication Program is unique in Canada, providing science graduates with the training to take scientific information and transform it into accessible and understandable knowledge for the public. It allows scientists to recognize the value of doing outreach and hone their skills for it. This program delivers a multidisciplinary experience that covers the theory underlying good communication, as well as the practical challenges of effectively communicating science and the issues involving science in society. Graduates of Laurentian University’s Science Communication Program are working in various fields all across Canada and in other parts of the world, including at Science North, the program’s partner.
This year’s RBC Innovators' Ball raised more than $730,000, breaking the record with a 10 percent increase from last year, to support the Ontario Science Centre's community access programs. Since 2008, the annual event has raised more than $5.4 million to provide critical funding for these programs, which serve approximately 80,000 kids and families annually by removing financial barriers that might otherwise stand between the community and a visit to the Science Centre.
"Our sponsors and donors give the gift of science learning — a gift that lives on long after a visit," said Maurice Bitran, PhD, CEO and Chief Science Officer, Ontario Science Centre. "The 'a-ha' moments experienced here ignite enduring curiosity and inspire lifelong discovery. More importantly, the skills gained through experiential science learning help cultivate the next generation of engaged and informed leaders, innovators and citizens.”
The attendees of the ball doubled their generosity and raised enough to enable 8,000 students to visit the Science Centre through Adopt-a-Class. One of the Ontario Science Centre's community access programs, which provides classes from schools located in Toronto's most underserved neighbourhoods with an opportunity to visit the Centre and participate in a curriculum-related program at no cost.
The CASC office is situated in Robinson Huron Treaty territory and the land on which we learn and live is the traditional territory of the Atikameksheng Anishnawbek.
©2017 Canadian Association of Science Centres