LNBio’s Educational Program is aimed at informing the general public about biotechnology and providing means for social inclusion of kids from underprivileged backgrounds, while exploring new media for education and dissemination of knowledge. By means of activities exploring meta-scientific contents, such as analogies, representations and approximations, we propose tools to help students and teachers to develop a critical attitude regarding their schooling, and a raised consciousness towards the challenges of the modern world, with a focus on health and medicine.
We have established a collaboration with the New York City based ScienceHouse Foundation, who provided two sets of microscopes and laboratory material for the initial set up of our Points of Science, connected to their MicroGlobalScope program. The first of these science laboratories is already in operation at the Associação Anhumas-Queroquero NGO, located on one of the Campinas city parks, wich was once a coffee farm. The NGO provides after school activities for children from underprivileged neighborhoods such as musical education, dancing, arts and crafts, and a journalism workshop, aimed at children and teenagers from the local favelas.
In our science laboratories being implemented at the NGO sitea and at LNBio, we develop activities such as observation of local plants, insects, bird feathers and microorganisms, and share images and stories with the global community, connected via the MicroGlobalScope blog. We hope to increase kids awareness about important themes such as waterborne diseases, climate change, sustainable development and traditional medicine, besides providing access to knowledge that would not be easily available otherwise, contributing to the increase of their interest in formal school activities, which, despite existing limitations, are the best available means for social inclusion and change.