YPI Scotland

More than 50 primary pupils from across Dumfries & Galloway completed the IET’s First Lego League Jr Expo.

This is the first time the challenge has taken place in Scotland. The children, aged between six and nine, were tasked with creating models based on a real life problem. Each of the schools brought their finished articles to Dumfries & Galloway College to present their models before enjoying a tour of the engineering department.

The event was organised by ESP and the Raising Aspirations in Science Education (RAiSE) programme, alongside the Dumfries and Galloway College and participating schools.

RAiSE is a pilot programme being funded and delivered by The Wood Foundation, Education Scotland, Scottish Government and participating local authorities to enhance the delivery of science education in primary schools. RAiSE Teacher in Dumfries & Galloway Carol Moyes said:

“It was a wonderful day and a real honour to be the first ever cohort in Scotland to take part in this Lego league.

“Inspiring young people to enjoy science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) education is vitally important in engaging a lifelong affinity for the subjects. The Lego may seem like fun play but the lessons run far deeper in terms of project management, developing an eye for detail and critical enquiry.

“We were very impressed by what the children achieved.”

Alice Cochrane, Head Teacher at Caerlaverock Primary, added:

“This was a fantastic project – we all learned a lot and enjoyed the process.’

There are already plans to bring the next challenge to Dumfries & Galloway College before the end of the year. It is also set to expand into additional regions with hundreds of children set to take part in the next challenge following on from the success of the event.

Rachel Tulloch is Project Support Manager Engineering at ESP which is bringing the IET’s First Lego League Jr to Scotland. She said:

“ESP works on behalf of Scotland’s colleges to promote energy, engineering and construction sectors and promoting working with member colleges and key partners across Scotland to promote the STEM agenda.  One of our aims is to work with partners to promote these STEM sectors as careers of choice and develop seamless pathways through schools to college to university.  At ESP we feel First Lego League and First Lego League Jr provide an excellent opportunity for children to develop the skills needed for these jobs of the future and to develop a flexible, project-based approach to learning.  ESP are delighted to be IET’s new delivery partners for First Lego League and First Lego League Jr in Scotland.  With such a successful pilot in Dumfries and Galloway, we can’t wait to expand into other RAiSE regions.”

The participating schools were Carrutherstown, Cummertrees, Penpont, Closeburn, Glenluce, Caerlaverock, and North West Community Campus.