- The Newton Room has welcomed 13- to 15-year-olds in Angers, France, since May 6 until June 4, 2021
- This traveling project features digital and interactive equipment to provide a unique experience for discovering science
- By the Norwegian non-profit FIRST Scandinavia, it is being coordinated in France by the Léo Lagrange Federation
Angers, France – June 1, 2021
The Mobile Newton Room: a program to inspire a passion for science
The project was launched in Norway in 2003 by FIRST Scandinavia. It was prompted by the realization that science teaching needed more practical content, a lot of equipment was obsolete, and science laboratories in Norwegian schools lacked resources. Working with teachers, schools, and industrial partners, FIRST Scandinavia created the first Newton Rooms in 2007. The project grew quickly and today there are nearly 40 Newton Rooms installed in various schools around Norway, Scotland, and Denmark.
Hands-on learning adapted to the needs of all students
A Newton Room is designed to provide students with an innovative and immersive STEM learning experience. Packaged as a mobile classroom arriving in two expandable containers, the Mobile Newton Room unfolds to form an educational space of 70m2 containing modern equipment and educational materials. In three or five-hour sessions, groups of students follow a module designed around a practical theme such as mathematics, robotics, or renewable energy. In Angers, the aviation theme was chosen with a module entitled "Up in the air with numbers!".
For this module, students are given a mission to assist with rescue operations. They must observe various sectors of a geographical area, decide on their own flight plan using various mathematical calculations (distance, speed, time, etc.), prioritize the rescue missions as a team, and then carry out their flight on simulators installed in the room. Science mediators from the Newton-trained Terre des Sciences association, and specially trained flight instructors will accompany them throughout the module.
Supported at a European level by Boeing, the project is being rolled out in France by the Léo Lagrange Federation
The global aircraft manufacturer Boeing joined forces with FIRST Scandinavia in 2018 for the European rollout of the Newton project. In France, the Léo Lagrange Federation, a Boeing France partner since 2015, was chosen to oversee this initiative. An existing partnership between the Hauts de Saint Aubin Neighborhood House and Renoir High School led to the choice of Angers as the launch site for the Mobile Newton Room in France.
"Boeing wants to get students interested in careers in the aerospace industry. By partnering with FIRST Scandinavia and Léo Lagrange, we are not only providing them with exciting ideas but also proactively addressing the skills shortage in STEM fields in France and around the world. For Boeing, this is about creating opportunities for all young people, especially young women, regardless of their profile or background," said Jean-Marc Fron, Managing Director of Boeing France. "This project is further evidence of our commitment in France to both diversity and to education."
"The Newton Room is a wonderful tool for (re) inspiring a passion for science in adolescents and young people,” added Estelle Rossi, Director of Programs and Quality at the Léo Lagrange Federation. “Often at this age, students start to meet obstacles and turn away from scientific subjects. As an organization dedicated to popular education, we are committed to offering young people different, innovative and ambitious forms of learning, which can help them cultivate a different relationship with knowledge. "
“This project has been an incredible experience. For the first time, we were able to execute all the necessary preparation of the Mobile Newton Room and training of the teachers and flight simulators 100% remotely. We could have never done this without the support of our partners in France,” said Alysia Tofflemire, Director of European Operations for Newton Room. “I am honored and excited to see this project come to fruition in Angers.”
Between May 6 and June 4, the Mobile Newton Room will have hosted nearly 400 middle and high school students, divided into groups of 15, and accompanied by their science teachers. On Wednesday afternoons, young people from the surrounding neighborhoods have been able to visit the Mobile Newton Room.
The project’s success depends on partners who are diverse yet complementary
Newton Room partners in France come from various backgrounds and have worked together for several months on implementing the project. This has involved respecting the health and safety rules in place and sharing the same commitment to inspiring students in the STEM topics and enabling everyone to explore it at their own pace, in a practical yet innovative way.
Find out more about the Newton Room project in France at: https://newtonroom.com/fr/.
Fédération Léo Lagrange
Guillaume De Chazournes
+33 6 76 21 61 57
Communications Manager France and North Africa
+33 1 70 37 07 07
Director, European Operations Newton Room
+49 1766 402 9435
Collège Auguste et Jean Renoir
Principal Education Advisor
+33 6 23 71 00 73