On Sunday 20 May 2018, a group of over 200 enthusiastic and excited Joey Scouts and Pre-Junior Guides, aged 5-7, gathered at Melrose High School to participate in a half-day Joey Scout Imagineering Challenge hosted by the Scouts ACT SciScouts Team.
Supported by the ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science and Engineers Australia, the program was designed around seven different activities including spaghetti towers, lego jeeps, joey jenga, paint-bots and joey powered rockets, as well as a visit by Paddy the Platypus and the ACT SES crew. The activity bases were run by SciScouts team members, Scout leaders, Scouts and Venturers, and ANU Student Ambassadors.
Kate Lehane, Branch Commissioner - STEM for Scouts Australia ACT Branch, said that the program aims to encourage an early interest in innovation and inspiration.
“SciScouts is nurturing an already naturally inquisitive audience of young people, so we are just providing the opportunities to build excitement and participation rates and potentially influence career aspirations,” she explained.
“We are really excited to have an ongoing partnership with ANU in terms of encouraging kids to actually consider doing experiential STEM activities and to get them participating and thinking about ‘hmmm, how can I go about this’ without necessary defining a clear end-goal”.
Warwick Abrams, Joey Scout Leader from 1st Tinderry Scouts said the day was very well organised, and the leadership by the Rovers and ANU was excellent. “I know both myself and my fellow leader Tanya had a great time; and it was great to see our 6 Joey Scouts all working together as a team on our first activity as a Mob.”
“They were excited about the day and got involved in all the activities, and were all very exhausted by the time their parents picked them up. We would love for the day to come back better and bigger next year.”
Rhys aged seven is a Joey Scout from 1st Tinderry Scouts, “My favourite activity was the Lego cars because I got to build the car, test it and then fix it up and race again, I really loved that I won all my races.”
Emma Newbury, Group leader at Woden Brownie Junior Guides also added her support for the event. “I have 6 girls here with me today and these sorts of days are just fantastic because we are really interested in getting our girls involved in the field of STEM.“
“I have a particular interest because my own daughter is here as well, and I just love to see her working collaboratively with the other children and exploring her imagination, building, creating and seeing the potential for what she can be in the future”.
SciScouts will be running a second STEM and Innovation event on the 19 August aimed at Cubs, Scouts and Venturers.