Let's talk about CITIZEN SCIENCE

Conveying the scientific method is a central aspect of the Discover Ants Program.

I first learned about Citizen Science when I was at North Carolina State University. I quickly realized that Citizen Science is a powerful tool for science communication and environmental literacy.

Citizen Science is a direct access point to real science. Instead of just learning about science in a theoretical way, Instead of just learning about science in a theoretical way, Citizen Science allows everyone to become a scientist and, additionally, participants are contributing to a real science project.

Therefore, I created the Ant Picnic Cititzen Science project together with a wonderful team of fellow scientists and teachers. The experiment is implemented as part of Module 4 of the Discover Ants program and in Module 5 we’re working with the collected data.

Citizen Science

…is the public involvement in inquiry and discovery of new scientific knowledge. A citizen science project can involve one person or millions of people collaborating towards a common goal. Typically, a citizen science project is led by a scientist and citizen scientistsare involved in data collection, analysis, or formulating research questions. (definition adjusted from SciStarter.com)

With Discover Ants YOU become a Citizen Scientist.
Students Discover Team Ant: Paige Derouin, DeAnna Beasley, Magdalena Sorger, Michelle Hafey, Maggie Cates (von links)


As part of the Students Discoverproject, a large-scale collaboration between several American education facilities, teachers and scientists started working together to bring citizen science projects into the classroom.

This collaboration was a great success. In total, the Ant Picnic project was implemented by over 500 schools. A previous version of the program presented here has already been tested in six schools in North Carolina. The feedback has been very positive – teachers appreciated the collaboration, students enjoyed the content.

Discover Antsnow continues this effort and is starting to build a framework in order to bring citizen science projects into schools all over Austria.

More about citizen scienc ein Austria at citizen-science.at

It has helped me to see that really anyone can be a scientist – which is awesome!
I feel it has helped me be a more creative and engaging teacher. Students can be active and engaged in real science versus trying to connect through a textbook.
Citizen science is a powerful approach to teach science in the classroom.

The "Ant Picnic" Citizen Science Project:

Discover Ants is available
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