7th MAY 2020 - Page 35

FEBRUARY 07 2019
Pupils to have a BLAST at
ESB science extravaganza
ABOVE: Max Graham, Jasmine Hayes and Rebecca Logan, from
Dunclug Primary School in Ballymena, preparing for the ESB
Science Blast in Belfast.
NE of the biggest science
events on the island of Ireland
is coming to Belfast, bringing
nearly 2,000 Key Stage 2
pupils together from all over
Ulster to display their creative science
investigations at the ICC Belfast
(Waterfront Hall) on June 5-6.
Managed and delivered by the Royal
Dublin Society (RDS) and endorsed
by CCEA (Council for the Curriculum,
Examinations and Assessment), this
non-competitive education programme calls on primary school students
from across the Province to harness
their natural curiosity and register
their involvement by Wednesday,
February 27.
Nurturing 21st century skills such as
critical thinking, problem-solving and
creativity – skills highlighted by the
World Economic Forum – ESB Science
Blast will make learning STEM skills
(Science, Technology, Engineering and
Mathematics) fun for both students
and teachers, and will feature amazing
science entertainment shows, tailormade for a 7-12 year old audience.
Open to all Key Stage 2 primary school
classes, the objective is to encourage
as many students as possible to think
critically about the world around them
and work together as a class, using
scientific methods of discovery such
as predicting, observing, measuring,
etc, to investigate the puzzling, quirky
or simply unknown … with typical
investigations including ‘How can we
make the best slime?’, ‘Why does cake
go hard but biscuits go soft?’, ‘Where do
waves come from?’, and ‘Can I charge
my mobile device with a fruit?’
All schools are then asked to bring
their research to life by showcasing
their findings away from the classroom
amongst hundreds of their peers at
the two-day event in the ICC Belfast.
Chief Executive of the RDS, Michael
Duffy, said: “Participation in ESB
Science Blast introduces young
students to the four Cs of STEM
education: critical thinking, creativity,
collaboration and communication – all
vital 21st century skills for the next
“Studies have shown that early
positive experience of STEM can have
a lasting impact, which is what we hope
to bring about with the thousands of
students that participate this year.
“We have found that the timing of the
Belfast showcase event is particularly
suited to P7 classes who already have
their exams behind them, but any
class that gets involved will really
benefit and we would encourage as
many as possible to register by our
closing date of February 27.”
Every participating school will
receive £75 towards their travel costs.
Teachers can use the ESB Science
Blast Investigation Framework to help
structure class investigations. This
framework aligns with the objectives
of the primary curriculum and
supports delivery of World Around Us
information and register for their
place at www.esbscienceblast.com
Up to 10,000 primary school
students and their STEM projects will
be involved across three ESB Science
Blast showcase events this year in
Belfast, Dublin and Limerick.
With an underlying ethos of
wholeclass participation, the constructive
feedback received from judges who
work across science, education and
STEM industries will also give students
the opportunity to engage with STEM
n Schools can also keep in touch
with the event via Instagram, Twitter
& Facebook.
Show-stopping line-up announced for Gradam Ceoil 2019
WORLD-CLASS line-up of top trad talent has
been announced for Gradam Ceoil TG4 2019.
Known as ‘the Oscars of traditional music’, the
live concert and awards show, which returns to
Belfast for the second year, will take place at
the Waterfront Hall on Sunday, February 17, promising a
night of foot-stomping entertainment right in the heart
of Belfast.
Legendary traditional Irish band Four Men & A Dog, who
formed in Belfast in the Nineties and rose to popularity
across the globe with their eclectic and vivacious blend
of trad, fused with a wide spectrum of other genres
including, rap, rock, jazz, blues, bluegrass, polka, country
swing, and even salsa, will headline the bill.
All-Ireland ceili band champions The Thatch Ceili Band,
pivotal members of the Irish diaspora in London, will also
perform on the night.
The highly anticipated live awards show, which will be
hosted by TG4 presenter Doireann Glackin and Belfastbased musician Donal O’Connor of well-known band
Ulaid, will also feature live performances from the six
Gradam Ceoil 2019 recipients, who will be recognised for
their talent and contribution to traditional Irish music.
TG4 Gradam Ceoil 2019 recipients include: Musician
of the Year, Catherine McEvoy; Young Musician of the
Year, Conor Connolly; Lifetime Achievement, Nicky &
Anne McAuliffe; Singer of the Year, Thomas McCarthy;
Outstanding Contribution, Brendan Mulkere; Musical
Collaboration, Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill.
The 2019 Gradam recipients will be joined in live
performances on stage by their own special musical
guests, including Irish fiddler Paddy Glackin, Michael
McCague and multi-instrumentalist Sinead Egan
Tickets for TG4 Gradam Ceoil Awards 2019, priced from
£22.50, are available from www.waterfront.co.uk or
+44(0) 2890 334455.
A dedicated Gradam Fringe Festival will also set the
tone for the evening, with a host of free music events and
workshops taking place throughout Belfast in the days
building up to the main event.
Running between Friday and Sunday, February 15-17,
this year’s Gradam Fringe Programme promises a packed
line-up of free music events, workshops and talks.
n Full details of the Gradam Fringe programme can be
found at www.tg4.ie/en/programmes/gradam-ceoil/theconcert/.
For more information visit www.gradam.ie or
connect with Gradam Ceoil on Facebook and Twitter
@GradamCeoil, using the hashtag, #Gradam
ABOVE: Conor Connolly, Young Musician of the Year; Anne McAuliffe,
Lifetime Achievement Award; Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill, Musical Collaboration/
Composition Award; Thomas McCarthy, Singer of the Year; Catherine
McEvoy, Musician of the Year; Nicky McAuliffe, Lifetime Achievement
Award; and Brendan Mulkere, Outstanding Contribution Award.
Public urged to get their running shoes on so they can fly!
RUNNING: Paramedic Mike Patton
will run in the team relay.
IR Ambulance Northern Ireland (AANI) is
asking the public to don their running shoes
and sign up to run the Deep RiverRock
Belfast City Marathon in aid of the charity.
As one of the official charity partners for the
2019 event, AANI is encouraging both beginner
and veteran runners to train and raise money
ahead of race day on Sunday, May 5.
The charity is looking to encourage as many
people as possible to take part with the aim of
raising sufficient funds close to £40,000 – a figure
that will fund the service for one week.
Kerry Anderson, Head of Fundraising, AANI,
said: “We are so grateful to the Deep RiverRock
Belfast City Marathon for choosing us as an
official charity and we can’t wait to see runners in
AANI vests on race day.
“AANI is a vital service for Northern Ireland –
our helicopter can get to any location in Northern
Ireland in approximately 25 minutes and there is
always a HEMS doctor and HEMS paramedic on
board, so it’s a crucial asset in times of emergency.
However, we urgently need the public’s support
to help us fund the £2 million needed per year to
keep the air ambulance running.
“There’s something for everyone as there are a
range of events: put on your trainers for the walk,
grab friends for the team relay, take part in the
Fun Run with families, or log the hours and train
for the full 26.2 miles in support of AANI!
“For those who don’t like to run but still want
to be involved, we are also looking for volunteers
for our cheer stations to support runners on race
day. There is something for everyone and every
little bit donated will help us keep this important
service running.”
AANI HEMS Paramedic Mike Patton said: “I plan
to run in the team relay for the Deep RiverRock
Belfast City Marathon on Sunday, May 5, 2019,
with members of HEMS Team.
“We need your support to keep us in the air, to
keep the service going and to keep delivering the
care we are delivering to people across Northern
Ireland. Please join me by signing up to take part
in the Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon 2019
and support your local Air Ambulance.”
The charity, AANI, in partnership with the
Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS),
provides the Helicopter Emergency Medical
Service (HEMS) for the region and responds to
seriously ill or injured patients 12 hours a day,
seven days per week. AANI has been tasked to
more than 672 taskings since its inception in July
To sign up for the Deep RiverRock Belfast City
Marathon in aid of AANI or for more detail about
the event, visit belfastcitymarathon.com
To donate or learn more about AANI, go to
Air Ambulance Northern Ireland’s Facebook
page, visit www.airambulanceni.org or call
028 9262 2677.


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