Adult Learning at Techniquest Glyndwr

Adult Learners explore science!

In an innovative collaboration between Wrexham County Borough Council Adult & Community Learning and Techniquest Glyndŵr adult learners are able to take part in some hands-on science learning at Wrexham’s science centre on the Glyndŵr University Plas Coch Campus.

The popular science discovery centre is more usually known for its work with schools and its exciting public programme for families with its 65+ interactive exhibits and engaging live science shows.

However, through their 'Skills in the Workplace' adult learners’ programme, the team at Techniquest Glyndŵr are helping local adult learners enjoy a series of problem solving and practical science activities including programming robots.

Today Caitlin Langford and Suzanne Davies, both adult learners from Wrexham, are learning how to programme a LEGO EV3 robot to follow a series of coded instructions in order to navigate an obstacle course safely.

As she showed some photos she had taken on her phone, Caitlin said,

“Yesterday we had a challenge to design and make a roller coaster out of some provided materials - it was fun creating something that actually worked.

Today I had to overcome a bit of fear over robots to programme a mini LEGO robot to go round an obstacle course – although Josh from Techniquest took us through how to programme various instructions it didn’t quite work as well as we hoped, even though the machine managed to go a little way round the course!”

Dawn Pavey, Projects Coordinator with Techniquest Glyndŵr said,

“Around 3 years ago we successfully applied to Wrexham County Borough Council to become one of their approved Adult Community Learning providers.

This has now opened the door for some exciting collaborational work and has enabled us to develop enthusiasm and interest in science amongst local adult learners.

We’re hoping the ‘Skills for the Workplace’ Programme we are currently offering adult learners will really take off once word gets about how fun and useful the sessions are.

Science activities are a great way to practice teamwork, communication and problem solving skills that are essential for most jobs.”

Michelle Wright, Development Officer with Wrexham Adult and Community Learning added:

“The aim of the courses at Techniquest Glyndŵr is to engage learners, who may be reluctant to be in a traditional classroom environment, into fun learning opportunities which, in turn, will help to develop transferable employability skills.

ACL will be looking to develop these courses during the next financial year, opening up more opportunities as the year progresses. Our target participants are 16+ for Essential Skills provision, 18+ for employability training or the over 50’s for social inclusion and digital inclusion.

If any adults in the Wrexham area would like to develop their confidence or need support to overcome any barriers to learning they are experiencing we would love to introduce them to the opportunities that are out there.

Wrexham Adult Community Learning (ACL) Partnership can support adults with advice and guidance to access training courses in community venues right across the Wrexham area.

Please contact me by phone on 07584 335409 or by email at acl@wrexham.gov.uk

Adult Learners are also the focus of Wrexham’s Festival of Learning due to take place in June.

It is hoped to stage a launch event to coincide with Wrexham’s Street Market in the town centre on Saturday May 25th, where it is hoped that Tŷ Pawb will be playing host to a line-up of adult learning taster activities including some science busking from Techniquest Glyndŵr. The event will be giving a flavour of the variety on offer during the month long Festival of Learning which includes a special focus on the UK wide Adult Learners’ Week running from 17th to 23rd June.

With funding provided by the Learning and Work Institute, the Festival has been developed by Wrexham Glyndŵr University in conjunction with Wrexham County Borough Council to involve a wide variety of local organisations in offering an enticing menu of community based informal learning opportunities to engage with adult learners.

Sarah Gaffney, Widening Access Coordinator at Wrexham Glyndŵr University commented,

“Through working with partners including Techniquest Glyndwr, WCBC, Advanced Brighter Futures, The Denbigh Workshop and Coleg Cambria, taster sessions will be delivered across the borough in various community venues.

The idea is to increase participation in learning from hard to reach families and adults by promoting local courses, and enabling people who might not have considered returning to learning to experience classes ranging from Mindfulness to Maths to Making Hanging Baskets!

All sessions are free and we hope to launch the Festival of Learning at the Wrexham Street Festival on Sat 25th May to promote all the sessions.”

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