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Together with CERN and INFN, an experimental teaching kit for secondary schools and training courses for teachers to make the scientific method and physics exciting

Presented today HOP Hands-On Physics, a project for the innovative teaching of science and, in particular, physics designed for junior secondary schools. HOP was conceived and realised by CERN in Geneva, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics, the Agnelli Foundation, and INFN, the National Institute of Nuclear Physics, with the financial support of Intesa San Paolo and the Stellantis Foundation, the charitable arm of Stellantis.

Thanks to its educational and experimental kit and specific training courses for teachers, HOP aims to promote early learning of the scientific method, science and, in particular, physics, with an eye to its contemporary developments and challenges, in as many secondary schools in Italy as possible.

Participation will be entirely free for teachers, schools and families. From November 2023, training courses for junior secondary school teachers (Mathematics and Science/Technology) will start in 16 Italian cities, who can register here:

“We are all well aware – Andrea Gavosto, Director of Fondazione Agnelli, commented – of the difficulties and challenges Italian students often face in learning maths and science. It is not by chance that the NRRP itself highlights and allocates resources to improve the quality of STEM teaching, while the Ministry of Education and Merit has recently released new guidelines for the teaching of STEM subjects.  International research and our own experience suggest that a more direct approach that is open to exploration – starting from inquiry and experiments to gradually focus on concepts and scientific theories – can help students learn, pique their interest and dissipate the anxiety often generated by studying scientific subjects. The HOP project, with its experimental kit and teacher training, takes a step precisely in this direction. Moreover, at Fondazione Agnelli we are convinced that this way of teaching and learning must become familiar to all students sooner, rather than later. That’s why we have decided to focus on junior secondary schools.” 

 “Nothing is more thrilling than learning something new every day,” stated Fabiola Gianotti, Director-general of CERN. “The HOP project offers students an extraordinary opportunity to learn physics in a simple, fun and fascinating way, applying the same method scientists use for research. Sharing the beauty and usefulness of science with students and people of all ages is also the main mission we pursue with Science Gateway, CERN’s new hub for scientific education, created with the support of Stellantis Foundation. We are proud of our collaboration with Fondazione Agnelli and INFN for HOP, and we hope to extend this initiative to CERN’s other member states as well.”

“We firmly believe in the HOP project, which stems from strong teamwork between CERN, Fondazione Agnelli and INFN. The future of our society is in the hands of our boys and girls: it is our duty and responsibility to provide them with the intellectual tools they need to become critical, aware and independent citizens,” noted Antonio Zoccoli, President of INFN. “The most powerful approach we have to gain knowledge, as well as to face problems and great challenges, is driven by the scientific method”

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The complete Press Release is attached