Join Senthil Kumar Manogaran, Science Educator, Science Centre Singapore at the final post in the ASPAC blog train “A day in the life of a Science Communicator”
What can be more amazing than looking at eager faces about to enter the Science Centre Singapore in the morning? Those who arrive looking forward to an exciting day of fun filled adventures resemble flowers that bloom in springtime. Sometimes I imagine that the Science Centre is the season of spring and the science communicator is the sunlight that glosses visitors with knowledge.
My typical day starts with a two hour class in the DNA Learning Lab which is well-equipped to teach students on the various life sciences topics. Microscopy and DNA classes are very popular with the schools that come here for enrichment classes as the students get to conduct experiments and hands-on activities. My job is to facilitate their learning by being their guide and explaining the science concepts in a fun way so that the information can be easily digested by the students.
I love to see the expressions of awe and amazement when students uncover the microscope. For some it can be a very memorable day as it’s their first experience looking at one. Containing their excitement and making sure that they don’t get distracted while I teach them how to use the microscope has always been a great challenge. Another hands-on activity I thoroughly enjoy is the DNA model building activity. It’s amazing how much students can learn just from building models. At the end of each class, the students always leave with a tinge of sadness that they cannot spend more time in the Science Centre.
In the latter half of the day, I usually get to manage events that occur here or develop activities. One such recent event was the “Brain Camp” where teenagers from different Asian countries came together to learn more about the brain. A “game show” styled activity themed around the brain was specially developed for this event. Some of the activities included were puzzles, questions that tested creativity and an activity that relied on balance. Participants had to compete in teams against each other to see who comes up top. During such events I get opportunities to work and interact with volunteers and teachers as well, which make my experience very fulfilling
This year I volunteered to be part of a mentorship program which helps children from low-income households to appreciate science. On some days, my evenings are spent with my mentee Jin En who is in primary four. Since science resources are easily available in the Science Centre Singapore, Jin En is always kept busy with a project whenever he comes. Although it can be tiring towards the end of the day, I know that my work has impacted many lives and this thought always resonates within me throughout the day, making me refreshed and eager to enlighten more young minds the next day!
Interested to find out more about the lives of Science Educators/ Communicators in other countries? Check out these posts that have been posted earlier on in the week.
- 17 July – Introductory Post
- 27 July – Petrosains
- 28 July – The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Miraikan)
- 29 July – The Mind Museum
- 30 July – Scitech (Hosted at ASPAC website)
- 31 July – Science Centre Singapore
For those of you who have been “riding” on the ASPAC blog train around the Asia-Pacific region, we hope you have enjoyed the interesting stories shared by the Science Communicators/ Educators. Are there any other topics you are interested to read as part of an ASPAC blog train? We would love to hear from you.