Ma.t.che.s. is a project funded by the European Commission in line of the ERASMUS+ program. His main aim is to raise the atractivity of chemistry lessons in school.
Chemistry is an endangered subject: it's not very popular with most students and if possible, students choose another subject. This is true for all Europe. The reasons can only partly
be found in each individual country. All schools taking part in the project "Ma.t.che.s. - Make the chemistry sexy" have in common that the high-level expectations of the subject in combination
with its "nerdy" image make students shy away from it.
However, chemistry as a subject is very important for the development of basic and advanced skills: Objective and long observation and documentation, revealing contradictions, focused analytical thinking, working with models, simulations (e.g. IT) and finding solutions are all skills needed for every day science classes. On top of that the high number of experiments in chemistry lessons demand good team play.
Students with these skills will have more chances later and will learn more and more easily in other subjects.
Five schools taking part in this project would like to still students' fears of chemistry. By developing specific materials from students for students and with unconventional approaches students' attitudes are meant to change in a way that will make the subject lose its nerdy and "for experts only-image". Students will be able to manage and overcome all problems so that they won't close their minds to the subject.
Students are the main actors of the Project and they will work in three steps:
First they are supposed to find out with the help of a questionnaire they've created themselves where other students see the main problems of the subject. At the same time they will ask about other students' expectations and suggestions for improvement.
The results of the questionnaire will be used to develop ideas for unconventional actions that are supposed to change students attitudes. Examples could be photo shootings in safety clothings, online votes for the most beautiful, the loudest or the most astounding experiment, a competition for the experiment of the month or anything else that the students see fit.
In the course of the project students will develop attractive worksheets for other students dealing the central problems of chemistry lessons. Students might have different ideas to make worksheets atractiv.
All activities will take place on an international level; students will always be guided and supervised by the chemistry teachers of the schools taking part in the project. The results of the questionnaire as well as the hand-outs for all actions and the worksheets will be integrated into the chemistry lessons of all schools and will be published on the 0ER platforms.
During all meetings teachers will get an insight into chemistry lessons of the individual countries. This way, teachers can exchange best practice ideas.
To increase the value of all materials there will be an exchange with local universities which will support both students and teachers. Hopefully, results will be of high-quality so that they will be accepted by outsiders and thus, will increase the range and the sustainability of the project.