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Science programme proves a big school holiday winner


Media release

16 August 2011

Fonterra science programme proves a big school holiday winner

Fonterra and MOTAT say the future of science in New Zealand is looking healthy, judging by Kiwi kids' response to MOTAT's Holiday Experience held during the July school holidays.

Featuring as the main attraction at the School Holiday Experience, 16,282 children attended MOTAT and the Fonterra Science Roadshow, and experienced the excitement of science first-hand.

Attending the Fonterra Science Roadshow was made even more memorable for one young science fan and his family. 13 year old Connor McCormick, of Papakura, won his family a trip to Sydney to visit the Powerhouse museum of science and technology, and NZ$1,500 spending money.

During its two-week visit to MOTAT the Fonterra Science Roadshow launched a new free booklet aimed at parents with kids who love science, called Science Matters, and hosted the Prime Minister's Chief Science Adviser Sir Peter Gluckman at a special event for Fonterra staff and their families.

"The reality is most kids won't be scientists," Sir Peter says. "But we all use science in our lives and we need to be 'science savvy' to understand the world around us and make the right decisions on everything from food, energy to climate change."

A technology laden Fonterra milk tanker was also on display, showing off new livery which reflects different landscape scenes, depending on whether it's night or day.

Fonterra Science Roadshow Director Ian Kennedy says the future success of Fonterra, and of the wider New Zealand economy, is closely linked with raising education levels in the areas of science, technology and innovation.

"A science education acts as a catalyst for stimulating and rewarding careers in important fields such as engineering, hi-tech electronics and bio-technology. Science education also makes young people 'science aware' as most, if not all, of our future decisions as a nation will be based on science.

"It's vital that Fonterra continues to invest in sponsoring science education as part of a commitment to making the dairy industry a better and more vibrant place to work - and making New Zealand a great place to live - for future generations," says Ian.

MOTAT museum experience co-coordinator Tony O'Sullivan says MOTAT was proud to play host to this exciting and educational experience for kids.

"It's great when you can physically see kids learning while they're having fun here at MOTAT. 'Sense It' was the perfect platform to show kids how people who are blind, deaf or suffer a sense impairment operate in society.

"It was awesome to have the support of The Royal New Zealand Foundation for the Blind and the National Foundation for the Deaf to illustrate this. Alongside science in action, it was winning combination," says Tony.

The Fonterra Science Roadshow travels to schools all around the country, and this year is celebrating 23 years on the road. This year the Roadshow also launched two exciting new shows: Fire and Ice - exploring the concepts of temperature and combustion, and Super Senses - exploring the weird and wonderful workings of our five senses.

More details about the Fonterra Science Roadshow and MOTAT can be found at www.roadshow.org.nz and www.motat.org.nz

Ends

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