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Newsletter, Summer 2024

Dear Friends and Supporters,


I am thrilled to share the latest progress of the National Children's Science Centre (NCSC). This year marks a significant milestone with the recent granting of planning permission, bringing us closer to creating a world-class interactive science centre for children across Ireland.


Since receiving our planning permission, things are moving at pace. We are delighted to announce that Presidio are our first tech sponsor. They have kindly gifted fully digital workspaces to our team here at the NCSC. We are also having exciting conversations with other potential partners including Google and National Broadband Ireland.


Together, we can create an inclusive space where children can explore, imagine, and create, paving the way for a brighter future. 


Thank you for being part of this journey.


Paul Duffy, Chair of NCSC


 

Planning Permission Granted

We’re delighted to share the exciting news: Final planning permission has been granted for Ireland’s National Children’s Science Centre, which is set to open its doors in 2028!


The National Children’s Science Centre will be nestled in the heart of Dublin’s Cultural Quarter, revitalizing the North Wing of the National Concert Hall on Earlsfort Terrace. Covering 9,500 square meters across four floors and a basement, the Centre will feature 14 exhibits, a state-of-the-art 122-seat planetarium, cutting-edge laboratories, and dynamic learning spaces. Plus, a 15th mobile exhibit will travel nationwide, giving every Irish schoolchild the chance to experience the magic of the NCSC.


Currently, Ireland stands as the only OECD and EU member state without a national children’s science centre, but the NCSC aims to change that.The Centre will bridge a gap in Ireland’s educational landscape while renewing the educational heritage of its site, the early University College Dublin.
 

What’s in Store?

Each aspect of the Centre is designed to ignite wonder and curiosity among schoolchildren, with a strong focus on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics). This project will enrich the local area, reconnecting with the Iveagh Gardens, and respecting the site's heritage and original design. Together with the National Concert Hall, it will create a cultural hub that combines science and music, leaving a lasting legacy for the nation.


Professor Luke O’Neill, a keen advocate for the project, expressed his enthusiasm, stating, "Ireland needs a fantastic science centre for our children. It's wonderful to see plans well underway."


The exhibits will focus on sustainability and environmental stewardship, inspiring children to explore and question the world around them through science. The exhibits will align with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, ensuring a forward-thinking and globally-minded educational experience.




Professor Luke O’Neill,

Professor of Biochemistry at Trinity College Dubin and 

Board Member of the NCSC


 

The NCSC in Numbers

2024

Planning Permission secured March 2024

2025

Construction begins

2028

Doors open

9,500 m2

of space in total, including 3,000 m2 of exhibitions

4

floors of interactive exploration across themed zones.

14

interactive exhibits.

15

A rotating Exhibit 15, which will  also travel throughout Ireland

122

seated planetarium in new extension.

'000s

of hands-on science exhibits across themed zones.

Plus:

  • A science theatre for shows, talks and presentations. 

  • An educational classroom areas, including a fully equipped laboratory.

  • A café and gift shop. 

and lots, lots more!


 

NCSC to Launch Industry Advisory Board to Foster Collaboration and Innovation

We are in the planning phase of establishing an Advisory Board, a significant stride in fortifying our position as a centre of excellence in children's science education. The Advisory Board is set to play a crucial role in shaping our exhibits and educational programs.


We are also delighted to announce the appointment of Áine Hyland as the new Chair of the Advisory Board. Áine, Emeritus Professor of Education and former Vice-President of University College Cork (UCC), brings a wealth of experience and recognition in the educational sector. Her leadership will be instrumental in developing our exhibits, with a keen focus on the critical question: "What sparks children's curiosity?" Her approach emphasizes not just the financial aspects but also the intrinsic educational and engagement values of our exhibits.


Reflecting on her new role, Áine said, "Our goal is to create a national centre where children from all over Ireland can explore and engage with science in a way that is both fun and educational. I look forward to working with the team to develop exhibits that spark curiosity and inspire a lifelong love for learning."


The creation of the Advisory Board and Áine’s appointment mark significant steps forward in our mission to become Ireland’s foremost centre for science education. 





Áine Hyland,

Emeritus Professor of Education and former Vice-President of University College Cork (UCC).


 


Take 5 with Paul Duffy, Chair of The NCSC



What excites you most about being chair of the NCSC?

"I love being part of a team dedicated to creating a world-class, interactive space for children. The opportunity to immerse children in STEAM in a fun and engaging way is incredibly exciting, and seeing the results will be immensely rewarding.”


What inspired the idea for this new children's museum, and what are your goals leading up to its opening in 2028?

The idea for the museum came from a desire to create a space where children can explore and discover science through interactive play. By the time we open in 2028, we will have all sorts of exhibits that spark curiosity and get kids excited about STEAM. These exhibits will be specially designed to engage different ages and stages of development.”


 What are the next steps for the NCSC?

“With the planning phase complete, along with commitment from the OPW to refurbish and restore the NCSC buildings, our focus now shifts to securing philanthropic and commercial donations. These funds are crucial for developing our interactive exhibits and meeting the future operational needs of the centre. We're excited to engage with potential donors who share our passion for education and innovation.”


Will the NCSC be just Dublin based?

“The NCSC is set to be a Centre for the whole country. Located in Dublin city centre, it will be easily accessible by all modes of public transport, making it ideal for both locals and visitors from across Ireland. Additionally, the NCSC will feature a permanent traveling outreach exhibit that will visit schools nationwide, giving every Irish child the chance to get involved and experience what the NCSC has to offer.”


How do you see the NCSC impacting the community and future generations?

“This project emphasizes the critical role of STEAM in Ireland. By transforming Earlsfort Terrace into a centre of learning and innovation, we aim to create an inclusive space that inspires and educates generations of children, contributing significantly to community growth and the future of Irish science sectors.”


 

Thank You Presido


A huge thanks to Presidio for outfitting us with digital workspaces. These new setups will enhance our team's efficiency and creativity, making our daily tasks smoother and more connected than ever before. Visit www.presidio.com

 
Launching Our New Fundraising Campaign: 

Inspiring Tomorrow's Minds

In May, the National Children's Science Centre proudly launched our new fundraising campaign, "Inspiring Tomorrow's Minds." This initiative aims to gather philanthropic donations to help us fit out the Centre with the most innovative exhibitions and facilities, ensuring it meets the highest standards of excellence.


Our campaign seeks to partner with individuals, companies and organizations that share our vision to empower our coming generations with the essential curiosity, critical thinking and empathy to create a more positive future for everyone. 


As we embark on this ambitious journey to inspire the next generation, we have identifited three priorities for this initial fundraising stage:


  • EXPLORE: We aim to integrate STEAM with sustainability, empowering children in environmental stewardship through exhibits aligned with UN Sustainable Development Goals.


  • IMAGINE: Our goal is to create a dynamic, STEAM-focused learning environment that ignites lifelong curiosity and innovation among young minds.


  • CREATE: The NCSC will transform Earlsfort Terrace into an education and science hub, establishing Ireland's first children's science museum and nurturing future innovators by sparking early interest in STEAM.


JOIN US !!! If you are interested in contributing to our mission of creating a world where creativity and science meet to shape a vibrant, sustainable future, please contact Naomi Mooney, Head of Philanthropy at nmooney@nationalchildrensciencecentre.ie.


 
"Play is the highest form of research", Albert Einstein

We hope you enjoyed this edition.

Until the next one, stay curious and keep exploring! Don’t forget to follow us for the latest updates and fun snippets: Subscribe on LinkedIn and follow us on Instagram and X / Twitter.

Here is the full article in pdf:


NCSC Newsletter Summer 2024 Final
.pdf
Download PDF • 6.94MB

- TRANFORMING SICENCE LEARNING FOR CHILDREN IN IRELAND -

 

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