Award-winning Gratnells MakerSpace Trolley installed at Eden Project LAB
Opened in 2001, Eden Project in Cornwall quickly became a world-famous visitor attraction. Called the “eighth wonder of the world” by the Times newspaper, Eden Project welcomes over 1 million visitors each year of which, over 50,000 are children on organised school visits.
Perhaps most famous for its two massive biomes housing ecosystems from the Mediterranean and the largest indoor tropical rainforest in the world, Eden Project is equally recognised for its world-class exhibition programme. As an educational charity, Eden Project has a firm focus on developing and delivering STEM and STEAM learning outcomes through their exhibition and education programmes, receiving support from the Association of Science and Discovery Centres.
Chris Bisson, Policy Development Manager at Eden Project commented, “Horticulture is very much a part of the STEM spectrum. It’s not just about planting; it’s about the science of plants and everything that entails, right down to the microscopic level. We’re looking at things like soil making, hydrology, maths and biology – all mapped against the curriculum.” He continued, “All of the educational programmes we run here at Eden must provide meaningful learning outcomes. For example, Darwin’s Doodles teaches adaptation, interdependence and evolution to year 5 and 6 pupils and its impact is currently being researched in conjunction with the University of Exeter”.
The latest permanent exhibition at Eden Project is called Invisible Worlds. It is supported by the Wellcome Trust, Arts Council England, the Wolfson Foundation and the Dr Mortimer and Theresa Sackler Foundation. Running in the Fibonacci inspired Core Building, which also houses the LAB, the exhibition “reveals the world beyond our senses”.
The MakerSpace trolley was launched by Gratnells in February 2018 under the banner “Creating spaces for creative minds”. It has become a central feature in the LAB education space where it is used as a resource to support various STEM and STEAM activities, encouraging a hands-on approach to getting involved in the Invisible Worlds exhibition. When asked to provide feedback on the usefulness of the MakerSpace trolley, Chris Bisson said, “The trolley has been a fantastic resource for us. We run all sorts of activities in the LAB and we can load up the trolley before sessions begin so those participating can easily select the materials they require”.
Richard Picking, International Marketing Director at Gratnells commented, “Creating opportunities for young people to experience ‘hands on’ science is at the core of much of our school activity, and we are delighted to be working with Eden Project to bring these inspiring and valuable exercises to so many young visitors”.