HOP Hands-On Physics is 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 a focus on its contemporary developments and challenges, in as many secondary schools in Italy as possible.
HOP is inspired by the inquiry–based learning approach, leveraging practical activities and experiments that can be tried first–hand in class, with no need for a full–fledged laboratory, to help young participants learn through hands–on experiences – just like professionals working in the field of scientific research.
The project is based on two pillars: an experimental didactic kit developed at CERN and dedicated training for maths, science and technology teachers, showing them how to use the kit in the most effective way with their classes.
The experimental didactic kit – which will be gifted to the teachers and schools joining the project – consists of a large modular box containing all the materials needed to carry out a series of simple experiments in the classroom, focusing on four subjects in the junior secondary school science curriculum: the scientific method, pressure, light, and electric charge.
The first phase of the teacher training will take place in November and December, engaging some 700 teachers in 16 INFN offices all around Italy. The courses will continue also in 2024 and 2025, with the goal of training approximately 2,000 teachers in total.
All the information to freely take part in the HOP project: www.hopscuola.it