What's on: Scientist for a Day: Web Detective

For one whole day, you’re the Arachnologist!

Conducting experiments in Scientist for a Day

Conducting experiments in Scientist for a Day
Photographer:  © Australian Museum

Event Type:
10 January 2017 to 11 January 2017
09.00 AM to 03.00 PM
Australian Museum, entry corner of College and William Streets
$110 Member Child | $135 non-Member Child (includes lunch and access to Spiders – Alive & Deadly)

Become an expert in spiders with the help of real Australian Museum scientists! Discover the sticky world of spiders and their prey, and go behind the scenes and look into our collections and study live specimens. We embark on an exciting expedition to Hyde Park looking for webs and their architects, collecting our findings in a field journal. And we meet an actual arachnologist and tour the Spiders – Alive & Deadly exhibition.

Ages: 8-12 


What is Scientist for a Day?

Scientist for a Day (SFAD) is a full-day social and educational workshop for young minds aged strictly 8–12, with a focus on encouraging a curiosity for and understanding of science. Each workshop has a different theme, designed to show kids what it’s like to work in all different areas of science. From conception, Scientist for a Day programs are developed, tested and run by experienced science communicators, educators and practising professionals from scientific institutions, often with decades of experience in their respective fields

A breakdown of the day

At the start of the day Scientist for a Day staff introduce themselves to the participating children, and ask the children to introduce themselves to each other. This is a very important part of the Scientist for a Day process as being friendly and familiar with their peers helps children work together to solve problems and discuss ideas.

This part of the day also allows the staff to find out what the children already know about the topic, to define their individual learning goals, and to explain what behaviours are expected.

Gallery visit
The Australian Museum is home to some of the largest and most complete collection of specimens and artefacts not just in Australia, but also the world. Getting the children to explore the galleries with the aid of specifically tailored tours and learning activities allows them to both take advantage of these collections, and learn how to use them to further their individual interests.

Hands-on activities
Once the children are familiar with the topic and defined their individual learning goals, we ask them to participate in hands-on activities that provide practical demonstrations of what they have learned so far.

Meet the experts
The behind the scenes segment of Scientist For a Day is when practicing scientists within the Museum or from other scientific and cultural institutions from throughout NSW come and share what they are currently working on. This sometimes means going to areas normally off limits, like the collections or research areas of the Museum, to show children what it means to be a working scientist.

The workshop typically concludes with a craft activity that allows the children to express themselves creatively and to create a physical object that they can then take home to remind them of the things they learned throughout the day.

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