We worked with Sage Experience to help organize a science fair in the town of Wli in the Volta region. Sage Experience is an organization that allows international and local SHS students to come to Wli and work on projects that will benefit the community. The group that we worked with organized a science fair for the local JHS students.
Our job was to mentor the SHS students in coming up with interactive and engaging ways to introduce the science concepts needed for the science fair. Many of the experiments are in the PEN JHS manual, so we were very familiar with the material needed to successfully support and mentor the SHS students.
Each SHS student had a team of 4 JHS students. Each team made a science experiment to present to the community in the science fair. Some examples of experiments were a density tower that compares the "weights" of different liquids, a water filter that can turn muddy water into clear water, and a way to turn different vegetables into batteries.
There were 3 groups of SHS students that worked on projects during this program. One group made a mobile library for the local schools. Another group built a wind turbine to create renewable energy for the village.
By being a part of the Sage Experience, we learned a lot of lessons that helped to improve our work here at PEN. Since we are based in Accra, most of our interactions with schools have been in and around Accra. PEN’s mission is to spread interactive science with all kinds of schools across Ghana, so it was very informative to spend time in a rural setting. We also spent a lot of time training people from different places on how to lead interactive STEM activities. We were able to use many of the things we learned from PEN's workshops to mentor the SHS students. We also learned a lot about how teaching is done in other countries outside of Ghana from our students, which we can use in future workshops.
It was a very beneficial experience for us and hopefully for the students as well. Sage's program allowed us to bring back a greater understanding of the diversity within Ghana and how to better reach the population through PEN.