Day of the Little Researchers: 150 daycare children experiment at the HZB

Maxi W., 6 years old, is happy about her homemade spectroscope, which she could take home with her.

At the light mixer, the children tried out how different colours are created.

Why is the light white? And the sky blue? Children ask many questions and want to try things out. For this purpose, 150 pre-school children had many opportunities at the "Day of the Little Researchers" in the HZB school lab. They used self-made spectroscopes to examine the colours of light.

The "Day of Little Researchers" is a nationwide participatory day for good early education in the fields of mathematics, computer science, natural sciences and technology. The motto of the action day on 21 June 2018 was "Discover what moves you!

At the age of five and six, the girls and boys built spectroscopes from cardboard and CD pieces in the HZB school lab. Then they explored the colours of light from different light sources. Normally, the HZB school lab only invites children from the 5th grade to these project days. But the younger participants were also enthusiastic. "The Kita children who visited us were great: They brought so much curiosity and interest in experimenting that this day was especially fun for us," says Dr. Ulrike Witte from the HZB school lab in Adlershof.

The school lab team conducted a total of nine workshops for pre-school children - but the demand was significantly higher. This shows that the offer meets with great interest among parents and childcare facilities. According to Mrs. Witte, the need is also evident in primary schools. The project days offered are always fully booked within a few hours. "The teachers see our offer as a real enrichment for their lessons. Where else can pupils experiment undisturbed and deal with a question for several hours?"