Mädchen machen Technik 2018
"Mädchen machen Technik" is a summer program organized by the Technical University of Munich every year. School girls between 10 and 16 years old are invited to universities and departments to discover how exciting and challenging research in natural science and engineering can be.
Building on last year's success, a few ECS in W2W and at the meteorological institute at the LMU offered a program called "Wind, Wetter und Klimawandel" to ten school girls between 12 and 14 years old on September 3rd and 4th 2018. The participants got a taste of the complex atmospheric processes by learning about the water cycle and the formation of precipitation using a marble run model. They performed experiments to learn about temperature, pressure and convection. For example, they constructed their own thermometer and produced clouds in a glass. After taking part in lab experiments to simulate and explain the Föhn winds, the participants learned about where data comes from by visiting the weather station at the institute. This first day was a nice introduction to better understand the challenges of weather and climate forecasting, which were presented on the second day. After a weather briefing, the schoolgirls experienced the challenges of weather forecasting by producing their own numerical weather prediction (see Charlton-Perez and Dacre 2011). In the afternoon, the forecast horizon was extended to climate predictions. The participants learned about the challenges of long-range forecasting and took part in the great challenge of climate negotiations during a role play.
The program was fully booked and the participants were highly motivated and interested. Their feedback was very positive. They especially enjoyed the experiments and were very happy to talk to the volunteers about studying meteorology at the university and the everyday life at the institute.
Top left: numerical weather forecasting – the Forecast Factory for real. Top right: role play on climate negotiations. Bottom left: group of participants and some volunteers. Bottom right: the “egg in the bottle” experiment