Sea water, snow and a block of ice are made from water, but they all have different colors. Ice cube is transparent, snow is white, and sea is blue. Why is it? To solve this intriguing question, children visiting Seoul National Science Museum (SSM) watch a story of an ice princess, snow princess and light queen rather than sitting in front of blackboards. Through this science drama Altogether White World, they get to understand the diffused reflection of light, a complicated science concept.
In the middle of the science drama stands Lim Ju-hee (’90, Science Education) who introduces herself as a science communicator. Working as a physics teacher in SSM, Lim is also the representative and founder of Scigun, a science drama company which helps children to learn science in an easier way. Lim said, “Science is hard. It is usually thought as the field of genius scientists. However, science is now intimately related to our daily lives. We are used to carrying cell phones and scientific discoveries often catch major social attentions. People, despite their age, need scientific knowledge more than ever. Helping these people to approach the field of science is where a science communicator comes in, and I do this through dramas,” said Lim.
Lim worked as a university lecturer teaching physics for seven years and realized that many of university students are not so interested in science and equipped with wrong fundamental science notions. “I concluded that early science education was too exam-oriented that it failed to interest children and deliver basic science principles. So I decided to teach children with dramas,” said Lim. At first, the drama was only a part of her lecture which she felt was useful to arouse students’ curiosity. “It is foolish to expect children to concentrate for a long time in science classes. Therefore, I added in a small play which kept students eyes,” said Lim. With positive responses from children and parents, the short play has now grown in to a drama presented twice a month. “It was a drama made for lower classes in elementary schools, but now they are asking me to make drama for higher classes,” said Lim. “Parents are also a big part of the audience as they want to understand science before teaching their children. As bigger audience it is, SSM prepared a theater for drama,” Lim added.
Lim also faced lots of hardships too because of insufficient working condition and support for science drama. Every process of the drama, from planning, preparing scripts, properties and to deciding music, literally passes the hands of Lim. So Lim recalls, “I wandered around Dongdaemun market to buy the cheapest materials and made costumes. Sometimes I reserved a hotel room to work overnight and poured our own money in due to poor support.” However, her passion for science education and encouragement from the family made her pursue her goal. Scigun has created five pieces of science drama and one is currently showing in SSM. Moreover, her efforts to elevate early science education have been recognized by the Ministry of Science Technology that she was designated as science culture promoter of this month.
Lim’s passion for science education extends to Ewha students. “Not all the students that currently graduated high schools have learned science since they can choose not to study. However, we still need scientific knowledge to live in this society.” She continued with a request, “When I taught in universities, I hardly saw students asking questions or have strong curiosity in science. Elementary students are even better in this area. Please be interested in science, which may produce a talented person who may change the future of Korea and the world,” said Lim.
저작권자 © Ewha Voice 무단전재 및 재배포 금지