Children Get Hands-On with All-Ireland STEM Resource

0 min read

25 April 2024

Gareth Kelly and Aine McGreegan with primary school children Aaron and Victoria

Children test bridge building skills

Two groups of primary school children from Bangor, County Down were the first to get hands-on with a new STEM resource, developed by South Eastern Regional College (SERC) and Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT) and funded through The Community Foundation for Ireland.

Children from Bangor Central Integrated Primary School and Bloomfield Primary School were happy to test out the new resource - an exciting building challenge and educational software both focussed on early engineering fundamentals - designed to encourage primary school children to consider a career in engineering. 

The launch of this exciting project is the culmination of three years’ work by SERC with University College Limerick, which researched the gender gap in engineering for females, followed by SERC and DkIT working together to devise resources for use in primary schools across the island of Ireland.

Leads for the project, Aine McGreeghan, Deputy Head of School of Engineering, SERC said, “The resources have been developed to address the shortage of engineering-based lessons in primary schools and to promote engineering as a potential career choice to all primary school children, especially girls”.

And, Gareth Kelly, Lecturer, Department of the Built Environment, DkIT, said, “By the time students attend secondary school many have developed an aversion to STEM subjects. We hear reasons like ‘too difficult’ or ‘only for boys’. With our Bridge Designer software for primary schools, we are going to break down these barriers before they can start and ensure students can aim for a creative and dynamic career in engineering.”

Primary Schools across the Island of Ireland can access the resources at https://bit.ly/SERCDkit

Main picture above: (Front) Aaron from Bangor Central Integrated Primary School and Victoria from Bloomfield Primary School test out the new All-Island Engineering resources developed by Engineering Lecturers (back) Gareth Kelly from Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT) and Aine McGreeghan South Eastern Regional College (SERC) and funded through The Community Foundation Ireland.