MARCH (Making Science Real in Schools)

The project MARCH, involving organizations from seven European countries, created a network of schools, research centres, companies and local partners with the aim of promoting innovation in Science and Technology education.
2014 - 2016
The MARCH project: coordination site

Initiave to promote learning in formal and informal situations. Formers: Ana Rodrigues; Patrícia João e Vanessa Souza.
Local: Vila Nova da Barquinha

Formers: Cláudia Faria e Teresa Conceição

Former: Hugo Tente, CENSE, DCEA, FCT, Universidade NOVA de Lisboa

Formers: Romeu Vicente e Rui Oliveira, Universidade de Aveiro

Sharing Examples of Best Practices in STEM Education

Investigating the Cities' Environmental Sustainability


Best Practices in Science and Technology

Energy: hands-on activities
Eva Varela Firme, Herschel Grammar School, London
Teaching and learning in school: the traditional method vs. the IBSE methodology
Teresa Conceição, Instituto de Educação, Lisbon
How to carry out STEM projets de Ciência e Tecnologia in our schools
Raquel Forca, Agrupamento de Escolas de Almodôvar
Pannel: Sustainable Cities
Adelaide Ferreira, EB Pedro Jacques de Magalhães | César Marques, Escola Profissional de Almada

Students talk about their projects

The State of the Art in Science Education
Todor Galev, Bulgaria.

Kit de Projetos
Examples of good practice in schools in partner countries.

Researchers List

Sustainable Cities

In Portugal, groups from 25 schools accepted the challenge to identify environmental problems in their community and to look for solutions based on Science and Technology (S&T) to help make their cities more sustainable.

School activities

School: João Villaret, Loures
Description: Under the topic From the Window of my School, several classes were invited to learn about the environment surrounding their school, a lowland area nearby the Tagus river. Learning meant watching, taking notes, asking questions as a basis to carry out subsequent research work under the IBSE methodology. Lichens as bio indicators was one of the areas covered, which involved laboratory work and the support of researchers (Lisbon university). Students presented their work in a teachers’ seminar. The coordinator of this project presented it in the MARCH conference, London.
Teacher: Teresa Loureiro
Students: 90
Researchers: Lisbon University

The project (IBSE) | Students' Presentations - Group 1 and Group 2 | Seminar - The Geology of a Local Environment

School: Dom Francisco Manuel de Melo, Amadora
Description: The impact of air pollution in people’s health was the topic studied by a group of students in a school club. Living in a city crossed by a heavy traffic highway was the reason for the topic choice. The work plan was devised to answer initial questions set by the students. The principles of IBSE methodology were behind the whole project. The effects of car emissions (Volkswagen’s fraud) were also studied by this group. The group had the support of a researcher from the Lisbon university, namely in the clarification of doubts they were confronted with. A model of a city has been created and used to disseminate the results of the students’ findings to be exhibited in the city’s Town Hall. A student and a teacher from this school presented the project in the MARCH conference, London.
Teachers: Helena Moita de Deus e Célia Miranda
Students: 8 | Teachers: 2 (Biologia e Física)
Researcher: Hugo Tente, CENSE - FCT/UNL

Poster 1 | Poster 2 | Visit (institution) | Report - PDF | City (model)  | Activities 2014 | Presentation | Poster 3 | Poster 4

School: Pedro Jacques de Magalhães
Description: Groups of students studied a problem affecting the local community: air pollution. Researching on the topic involved carrying out experiments. Finding solutions to reduce this type of pollution involved interviews with local people. The starting point for the air pollution study was a real health problem (Legionella outbreak) that occurred locally, in 2014. The students’ findings were presented in a local government session. An expert in air quality from a Lisbon university gave support to the groups from this school (answered sts’ questions). 
Teachers: Adelaide Ferreira and Iolanda Farias
Estudantes: 60 | Teachers: 2 (Physics and Biology)
Expert: Hugo Tente, CENSE - FCT/UNL

Activities: 2014-2015 - PDF | 2015-2016 - PDF | Proposal (Local government)

School: Almada
Description: Students from a professional school course were involved in a project to identify the best materials to be used in house construction to guarantee an adequate thermal insulation. Activities, organized according to the IBSE methodology, involved building house models in which tests with different materials were carried out. Two researchers from the Aveiro university and a local organization offered support to this group of students.
Teacher: César Marques
Students: 13 + 15  TOTAL: 28 
Local expert: João Cleto, AGENEAL
Researcher: Romeu Vicente, Aveiro University

Activities 2014 | Activities 2015

School: Casa Pia de Lisboa - CED Nossa Senhora da Conceição
Description: In order to learn about food waste, this group of students calculated the amount of food waste in the school canteen and in local restaurants. A collaborative work with a local organization that distributes food to people in need was also included in this group’s activity. The groups’ findings were presented in data charts built in the mathematics lessons. A visit to a local waste treatment station helped these students to learn about another waste treatment.
Teacher: Ana Mira
Students: 56


School: Infias, Vizela, Braga
Description: Four groups of students from one class carried out research on water pollution from different sources and locations in the local community. One of the groups focused on the dangers of drinking water from local wells in the rural community where the school is located. Considering the dangers involved they carried out an awareness campaign for the community. These students also took part in an action to clean a river.
Teacher: Elisa Maria Cardoso Saraiva
Students: 20 | Teachers: 3
Support: local association


School: Álvaro Velho, Barreiro
Description: The destruction of the local environment was the starting point for a group of students to put forward proposals to recover the area. Their activities were integrated in a previous school project supported by a national environmental organization. Along their research, students have worked with the support of local stakeholders, namely the local municipality and a museum curator. Activities involved learning about the local environment, doing laboratory experiments (water and soil analysis), field work and actions for the local community. The outcomes of this work are published on an e-book. Students have organized a seminar for the school and local community to present their project findings. A local newspaper has published an article about the event.
Teachers: Helena Cristina Pires e Rui Sequeira
Support: Environmental Association (ASPEA)
Students: 17
Teachers: 3 (Biology, Art and English) | Support: Environmental Association (ASPEA)

Site | Blog | Video | Programme | News | Photos (Facebook)

School: Antero de Quental, Ponta Delgada, Açores
Description: “Tobacco’s harmful effects” was the topic chosen by these students for their project. Interaction with the national cancer association has offered them the opportunity to learn about real cases. The production of large 3D images to be exhibited in the school entrance and playground was the outcome of the students’ work.
Teacher: José Rebuge
Students: 20 (2015-2016 e 2016-2017).

Exhibition - PDF (Photos) | Activities | PDF (fotos)

School: Camilo Castelo Branco, Carnaxide
Description: “Is dogs’ poo harmful for public health?” This was the question a group of students in a school club tried to answer by analyzing samples in laboratory. A campaign has been organized aimed at changing people’s habits. Stickers have been designed and produced by the Students. Details about the campaign on a facebook page created by this group.  
Students: 8

Facebook: A-Poia | News (Parents`Association)

School: Amato Lusitano, Castelo Branco
Description: In the geography lessons, a class has carried out a research on the city buildings’ sustainability in terms of energy consumption and thermal comfort. The school building was chosen as their case study.  Carrying out interviews to the school users and reading about the topic allowed the Students to come to a set of recommendations. The Students have produced a video and two posters to dissemination their findings.
Teacher: Cacilda Basto
Students: 23

School: Dr. Manuel Gomes de Almeida, Espinho
Description: Hydroponics and vermicomposting are topics that have been studied by groups of students in their biology lessons. Several experiments have been devised and carried out by these students in order to come to conclusions about the advantages of these techniques. This group plans to make a poster to be presented in a science conference that will take place in Lisbon next July, thus disseminating their work to a larger audience. The project ran for two school years.
Teacher: Alberto Caeiro
Students: 48

Activities | Facebook | Group Photo | Site | PDF

School: Airães, Felgueiras, Porto
Description: A group of students has decided to find out how to save energy in their school. This involved studying the patterns of their school’s energy (electricity and gas) and water consumption for a two year period and communicating their findings through graphs. After having studied the problem in different subjects on how to reduce water and energy consumption, the students published a set of recommendations for the general public.
Teacher(coordinator): Ana Margarida Gonçalves
Teachers: Mathematics, Art, Geography, Physics, Natural Science, Geology, Religion.
Estudantes: 39

Blog | Building a Solar Panel

School: João de Deus, Faro
Description: A group of students (12th form) started wondering about the disappearance of a beach in a coastal area in the south of Portugal. This was the starting point for their work. A researcher from the Algarve university guided this group’s visit to the location and provided documentation to support the students’ initial hypothesis and follow-up research. Their study included interviews to local people to collect their memories about the beach. The findings of this study were presented in a conference of geography teachers and students.
Teacher(coordinator): Anabella Vaz
Students: 4 (clube).
Researcher:Susana Costas, Marine and Environment Research Centre , Algarve University

2015-2016 | PDF

School: Almodôvar
Description:“Is it possible to produce biodiesel from used kitchen oil?” was the question students from this school trying to answer. This involved experiments carried out in the school laboratory. Their findings have been published in a video ( This project entered a national competition and has won it!
Teacher: Raquel Forca
Students: 57
Teachers: 4 (Physics, History, Biology)

School: Augusto Gil, Porto
Description: How to reduce the heat in our cities was the problem students in a science club have been invited to find solutions for. This challenge has created the conditions for students to learn biology concepts and ideas about urban planning. Communicating the knowledge acquired has been done through models built in the Art lessons. The models show the planning of a city as well as houses with a focus on green roofs. These activities helped students learn and value natural resources and ecosystems. During the research and practical work, these young students have been helped by an architect. The project ran for two school years.
Teacher: Manuela Lopes
Students: 6 teachers: 2 (Biology and Art)
Expert (landscape architect): Diana Fernandes, FCUP.  

PDF (2015) | PDF

School: Casa Pia de Lisboa - CED Nossa Senhora da Conceição
Description:  Students from two classes have studied the changes needed to be introduced in a neighborhood in order to make it sustainable. Models have been created as a way to express these students’ plans.
Teachers: Marta Matos
Students: 60

School: Cerco, Porto
Description: A class of secondary education students transformed a classroom in a sustainable energy laboratory, with modules focused on the production, transport and storage of energy and the technology related to its practical applications in industry, agriculture and commerce. In order to plan the modules, the students had to learn the concepts related to the topic. The support of a researcher from the Porto university was of great help. Sessions supported by posters created by the students were prepared for younger students from local schools. These activities were integrated in the MARCH project, as well as in another project which provided most of the financial support.
Tracher: Isabel Pelicano
Students: 22

Photovoltaic Energy | Photothermal Energy | Wind Energy | Energy Lab | Sustainable Energy Lab | Certificate | Video

School: Martins Sarmento, Guimarães
Description: Calculating the percentage of invasive plants in a nearby urban park that might hinder this biodiversity hotspot was the task of a group of students from this school. Taking part in sessions offered by an environmental institution and learning to use guide books were part of the preparation for the field visits to the . Within a partnership established with the municipality, support from an expert has been offered to the group.
Teacher: Miguel Viana
Students: 27 (more directly involved: 11)

Activities (PDF)

School: Dr. Manuel Gomes de Almeida, Espinho
Description: Evaluating the impact on one’s health of sound levels in a school environment is the aim of this project. Based on the data obtained from an initial study, proposals for improvements to be introduced in the school will be implemented and monitored. As this study needs information from different subject, Science, Physics and Mathematics teachers are involved in it. Partnerships have been established with the Physics Dpt, Aveiro University; the Porto Polytechnic Institute and the Health and Technology Institute, Porto. The support of experts from different areas has been essential for this project.
Teacher: Rui Polónia
Students: 60 | Teachers: 3
Experts: João Duarte and Vitor Bonifácio, Physics Dpt, Aveiro University

School: Professor José Augusto Lucas, Linda-a-Velha
Description: A group of students studied the effects of the cigarette butts in local river. Experiments in the laboratory helped them to come to conclusions about the harmful effects contained in the butts. The students carried out interviews and organized a campaign aimed at changing people’s habits both in the local and school communities. Ashtrays built by the students and a video were part of this campaign. The project ran for two school years.
Teacher: Ana Pinto
Students: 8
Expert: Isabel Palma, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, UNL

School: Raul Proença – Caldas da Rainha
Description: Planning a sustainable youth hostel was the challenge a group of pre university students has devoted to. The main focus was on solutions that make use of renewable energy and involve recycling materials. The plan devised by the students was presented to the local community. As an add-on, one of the groups managed to build a game machine by using parts of obsolete computers.
Teachers: Carlos Alberto Teixeira Pires
Students: 30 Teachers: 3


School: Pedro Jacques de Magalhães
Description: The topic chosen by a group of students from this school had to do with the fact that the school is located in a city with heavy traffic (train, highway, road). After having planned their research in an initial brainstorm, students recorded and measured noise in different city areas in order to identify the most heavily polluted. Research activities involved, among others, testing materials to for their insulation characteristics and checking if some of them could be used in sound barriers in the city. The project ran for two years.
Teacher: Iolanda Farias
Students: 28 (4 students leading) Teachers: 2 (Physics and Biology)


School: Manuel Ferreira Patrício, Évora
Description: Students from four classes (special needs) set the task to identify the best spot in the school playground to start a vegetable garden. Therefore, they collected soil samples from different spots and to be analyzed in the school laboratory in the Chemistry lessons.
Responsável: Leonor Rocha
Students: 29 Teachers: 3


School: Nogueira, Lousada, Porto.
Description: The impact of a landfill site in the quality of the air and water in the local community was the problem studied by a group of students from this school located in the north of Portugal. Field visits to a local woodland to make observations and come to conclusions was one of the activities. This group of students was supported by teachers from different subject areas in the different phases of the study. Further information in the blog created by the students.
Teachers: Miguel Viana, Suzana Costa.
Students: 5 Teachers: 2


School: EB 1,2,3/PE do Porto da Cruz, Machico, Madeira
Description: Um grupo de estudantes desta escola propôs-se iniciar um projeto voltado para o reflorestamento de áreas na ilha que tinham sido recentemente devastadas por incêndios e avalanches. O principal problema identificado pelos alunos foi a perda de espécies endémicas desta ilha (floresta Laurissilva). O grupo contou com o apoio de um investigador da Universidade da Madeira, Domingos Henrique, na identificação das espécies. Os resultados do projeto pode ser visto no blogue que o grupo criou.
Teachers: Marisol Andrade e Rita Vieira
Students: 20


School: Cerco, Porto
Description: After having identified people’s bad habits in what concerns energy saving, through interviews answered by the school populations, students from two classes created a video to work as a campaign to change the situation. 
Teachers: Alexandra Vaz e Isabel Pelicano
Students: 40 Teachers: 2


School: Entroncamento
Description: A busy train station located in their city center made the students aware of a problem: noise pollution. They considered this deserved to be studied. Identifying the noisiest sites in the city was the first task. They collected data through interviews to the locals. And their findings were the following: the areas around the railway station the noisiest. The students identified a reason that worsened the problem: there were no barriers separating the rails from the street. Therefore, they managed to arrange a meeting with the environmental department of the local council to discuss the problem and to present solutions that could minimize the problem. Students have shown examples implemented in other countries and described the best materials to be used in the barriers.
Teacher: Marta Azevedo
Students: 40 Teachers: 2

School: João de Deus, Faro.
Description: Groups of students identified several problems in their city for which they have found solutions that were presented to the local government. The results of this study have been presented by the students in a MARCH session in Lisbon.
Teacher: Anabella Vaz
Students: 40


School: Almodôvar
Description: These two topics chosen by students from this school located in a rural area have to do with problems faced by the community.Dehydrating fruit to prevent wasting agricultural products was a solution put forward by students and which has led them to build a gadget and carry out tests.  Testing the water from local wells was another activity students got involved in, as they suspected it was not good human consumption. The activities have been presented to the community, thus serving as awareness sessions.
Teacher: Fátima Castelo, Raquel Forca e Sylvie de Sousa
Students: 100 | Teachers: 4 (Biology and Physics).


School: Luso-Francês, Porto
Description: Coming to conclusions about the “pedestrian quality” in a city (Porto) was the aim of this project focused on sustainable mobility. In order to study the problem different groups analyzed the quality of streets in the city centre (qualitative data); transformed this data in quantitative data. Using the data to show the findings (good and bad spots in streets) on a city map was the next step of this study. Putting forward proposals for improving the situation in these streets was the final step of this study. The project had been running in this school for several years before the teacher joined the MARCH project. It has been presented in several seminars.
Teacher: Rita Gabriela Rocha
Students: 20 | Expert: Gonçalo Salazar, CEIIA


School: Afonso Duarte, Profissional School, Montemor-o-Velho
Descrição: A group of students from this professional school (agriculture) collaborated with the municipality in the creation of a touristic leaflet with information about the local environmental resources. The students started by doing field visits to identify the sites of interest to be included in the leaflet. Learning about the sites (fauna, flora, geology) was the step which followed. Creating contents was the outcome of this project.
Teachers: Florbela Leite e Sara Travassos
Students: 20 | Teachers: 2


School: Maria Lamas, Torres Novas
Description: A nauseating smell caused by a local creek, and its reduced flow made a group of students suspect of the water quality and study the issue. They asked for the help of an expert to understand the problem and identify the source of pollution.
SubjectsPhysics and Chemistry and Portuguese
Teacher: Dina Coelho.
Students: 3 (8th year)

School: Ponte de Sor, Portalegre
Descrição: This multidisciplinary project aimed at stimulating the students’ active participation in the learning process, focusing on the importance of science in daily life as well as on the relevance of promoting citizens’ scientific awareness. A workshop by an environmental organization and a field visit allowed students to learn about the technics used in the water treatment in their region. These two initiatives were the basis for the follow-up activities carried out in school in the Natural Science lessons. Different subjects were involved in this project: Physics, Chemistry, Natural Science, Geography and Portuguese. Special education students have also taken part in this project (Health and Security lessons).  
Coordinators: Cristina Gonçalves and Virgínia Silva
Students: 8th form (class)


School: D. Sancho II, Alijó, Vila Real
The impact of large enterprises on the regional fauna and flora
Identifying the regional fauna and flora and evaluating the impact of the Tua dam
Creek pollution
Identification of the area affected by pollution; water analysis; identifying the sources of pollution; suggesting actions to solve the problem.
Urban solid waste
Identifying problematic situations (in particular dumps); putting forward solutions.
Teacher: Iolanda Ribeiro da Silva
Group: 12th form (Biology)

School: Manuel Ferreira Patrício, Évora
Description: During Science Day, a group of students built models to express their ideas of what a sustainable house should be like. The most creative models have been included in an exhibition open to the local community.
Teacher: Isabel Afonso
Students: 25