On October 23, the “Lab in a Box” (LiB) project held an introduction session at the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência (IGC) where plans for its next edition, that of academic year 2021/2022, were presented to the teachers enrolled in the “Lab in a Box” – Oeiras Accredited teacher training Courses, and the diplomas for the representatives of 14 pioneer “Lab in a Box” teachers, trained in the pilot year of 2020/2021, were handed out.

Nearly 50 teachers and distinguished members of the IGC and the Oeiras municipality, key partners in this project, attended. The teachers, who teach Environmental Studies or Natural Sciences to kids aged 6 through 12 in Oeiras schools, have registered for the upcoming LiB training sessions.

During the introduction session for Lab in a Box 2021/2022, Dr. Mónica Bettencourt-Dias, IGC director, highlighted the importance of nurturing all children’s enthusiasm for science, and of sustaining the collaboration between scientists and teachers to continue adjusting the fit between experimental science activities and the needs of the classroom. Dr. Pedro Patacho, Municipality of Oeiras Education Councilman, expressed his appreciation for all the results obtained in the project’s pilot year, and the important contribution of a project of this dimension to foster the critical thinking process and future of children, in the municipality and, in the future, at the national level.The satisfaction of the pioneer teachers, the first batch of 14 teachers that joined the project, and that were trained in the 2020/2021 school year, during the COVID-19 pandemic, was also palpable, as was the enthusiasm of the newly enrolled Oeiras teachers, about to embark on the new edition of the “Lab in a Box – Future with Science” adventure.

At present, the LiB team has 50 “Lab in a Box – Oeiras” kits prepared and ready to be distributed, and about 50 teachers registered for the LiB teacher training courses in the upcoming 2021/2022 school year. In addition to the approximately 500 students who carried out the LiB experimental activities in the past school year, this year’s projected expansion should allow LiB to reach more than 2000 children in the municipality of Oeiras!