Students Get Hands-on Exposure to Science at Waireka Field Research Station

Students use some of the scientific equipment during their visit to the Waireka Field Research Station in New Zealand.

Horticulture and science education came together recently when 40 children ranging from 7 to 12 years old visited Dow AgroSciences’ Waireka Field Research Station. Employees set up four stations to demonstrate some of the tasks that are regularly performed at the site.

“By making it hands-on, the children became highly engaged and had fun at the same time” explained Brian Husband, Waireka’s manager. “It’s important to discover science early on in life.”

Problem solving was a key task at the Laboratory Station, where children were asked to identify seeds, fill beakers with a precise amount of liquid, read a thermometer and use a microscope. To better understand things that “can’t be seen,” students touched an agar-filled Petri dish so they could discover just how clean their hands really were.

“Not only did this teach the children about diseases in everyday life, but it also taught them about personal hygiene,” Husband said.