On Thursday November 10th 2016, science centres and museums around the world are joining forces to celebrate the very first International Science Centre and Science Museum Day. The event, which is backed by UNESCO, recognises the huge contribution that these centres and museums make every day, on every continent, in inspiring young people and families with science.
It will be formally launched at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, and coincides with a world-wide celebration involving over 300 science centres from Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and North & South America. Many events are taking place to commemorate the day – there will be a global experiment on cloud observation, an investigation into ways of recycling water on board the International Space Station, and the development of a computer model exploring malaria control
Dynamic Earth is delighted to be involved in another unique project marking the occasion. Sir Isaac Newton was born at Woolsthorpe Manor, Lincolnshire in 1642 and made many of his most important scientific discoveries there. He was famously sitting under an apple tree in the orchard, when a falling apple inspired his revolutionary theories about gravity. And the original tree still flourishes in the orchard there, continuing to inspire visitors from all across the world. Seeds from that very same apple tree have now been collected and sent to specially selected science centres across the UK, and we have been lucky enough to be chosen!
On arrival at Dynamic Earth, the apple pips will be planted in a flowerpot and put in a fridge which will simulate winter. Then in February, we will take them out and they will be planted during warmer conditions which will trigger them to germinate. Apple trees take many years to grow, but we will then have our very own Newton's Apple Tree and be able to share the science and stories with all of our visitors. Pips from this famous tree have even gone into space and are now on the International Space Station! They were sent up with Tim Peake as part of his ‘Principia’ mission, which was named after Sir Isaac Newton's book about forces and gravity.
Together, UK-based centres & museums involve around 20 million children and adults every year with science through visitor attractions, schools’ education programmes, science events and community activities. Science attractions like Dynamic Earth are at the very heart of bringing the latest research & technology to the public, getting people involved with science in a hands-on, accessible way and helping to inspire future generations to build the skills we need to create a better world. And we are so excited to be a part of the first ever World Science Centre day which recognises this!