On the 14th of March two groups of S2 pupils attended the Go4Set Engineering Development Trust Competition at Dumfries House. For 10 weeks, both groups worked tirelessly on their STEM projects, producing a professional report and model, which they presented to their assessors on the competition day. Rachel Byrne, Jenna Shelley, Rosie Milne and Kathleen Milne created a simulation of a novel system that locates books using radio-frequency identification. Ellie Cook, Emma Taylor, Poppy Nicolson, Amy Nixon, Rosie Rossi and Jake Murray developed a new recycling system for use in schools based on a method used in Singapore. The recycling group in particular wowed the judges and they managed to score the ‘Outstanding Teamwork Award’!
The European Parliament runs a competition every year for Advanced Higher Pupils in Scotland. Niam Dunn (AH French) was selected to represent Marr College at the Euroscola day. She was amongst 26 other pupils from all over Scotland. The Troon Rotary club kindly sponsored Niamh’s travel. The whole trip was organised by Articulate, a company specialised in educational language trips abroad. It was a wonderful experience as Niamh with her peers got to meet students from all over Europe and work with them on debate such as immigration, environmnent and cultural heritage.
During this trip, she had the opportunity to visit the Council of Europe, do a street survey in French and make a film on Strasbourg. On the Euroscola day, she attended a multilingual discussion with a French MEP, Edouard Martin. It was very interesting to listen to the simultaneous translation of the interpreters. This was followed by an afternoon of parliamentary debates on which she had worked with her group.
It was a great experience for Niamh and below you will find her diary of the trip.
On the day of Euroscola, we got up early and took the tram to the European Parliament. To begin, every country was introduced by two representatives from that countries, they gave facts about their country and the schools the came from. After the introductions, we had the opportunity to ask questions to Edouard Martin, a French MEP. There were questions asked about the Paris agreement, immigration, gender inequality and the rise of right wing politics and much more. After lunch, we did a quiz in teams of four, and each member had to be a different nationality. The quiz was in twenty different languages, and most of the questions were on the European Union. I was with a Greek girl and a Romanian boy and a French boy, so we had a wide range of different languages, however we didn’t win. After the quiz, we had to get into 5 groups, to discuss our chosen topics. My topic was ‘the European year of cultural heritage’, we spoke about different ways to promote different culture within Europe, for example, a Europe wide festival that celebrated the many cultures within Europe, promoting exchange trips in schools and promoting foreign TV and film. Then we reported them back to Edouard Martin, the French MEP. Everyone was able to debate the many different proposals put forward, it was really interesting to see how drastically opinions differed between countries. After Euroscola, we had dinner then sat in a local Brasserie to watch the documentaries we made the previous day and spend some time together before leaving the next day.
Overall, it was a fantastic experience that I would highly recommend to everyone and I am so thankful to the Troon Rotary Club for allowing me this opportunity.
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