Roots: Ik ben science!
As you walk into the room you see a group of 20 young children and six parents building a structure out of drinking straws. They all live in Beijum but they have roots in various places of the world, like Saint Martin, Aruba, and Jamaica. They want to test if their straws-structure can withstand an earthquake. In doing so, they explore concepts of force and engineering. Thandeka is guiding them. Thandeka, who was born and raised in Pretoria, is a geologist and she recently received her master’s degree in environmental sciences from the University of Groningen. Theila, the facilitator, prompts children to consider any uncontrolled variables in their design. Theila has a background in biology and education and she is originally from Jamaica. Eva, an undergraduate university student, is translating what Theila is saying to Dutch. After a while, an eco-justice activist walks in. Chihiro is a young woman with a background in Film Studies, born in Amsterdam with roots in Bolivia, to share her work and personal story with the children. Hip-hop music is playing. The children are drinking lemonade with fresh mint from the community garden.
This is the Trefpunt Center at Beijum on a Saturday morning. This is a group of scientists, professors, educators, students, activists, artists, community workers, and parents.