Marinara Marcato of SMART Edu Club.

A PhD student at University College Cork (UCC) is providing a free online weekly activity programme for children interested in science and technology.

Marinara Marcato, a PhD student at the Tyndall National Institute in UCC, established SMART Edu Club, to create high quality, educational content for children in a fun and engaging way.

Now as our world is confined to our homes and parents have to “home school” their kids, she is running a free weekly programme online for children aged 7 upwards.  

The topics for the activities include binary number and text encoding, data encryption, GPS coordinates and systems, and finally drones. Parents do not need any prior knowledge, as lessons contain very accessible language and clear instructions.

“With SMART Edu Club we want to create online content and activities that children can do from home with easily accessible household materials.

“The activities can be done individually or with the guidance from parents,” commented Marinara, who is also a part-time STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and maths) teacher.

“At SMART Edu Club we want to bring scientific topics to life. We want the children to follow a story, engage with our animations and apply what they learn in a practical project.

“From my experience that’s what the kids enjoy the most, seeing their knowledge come to life,” she said.

The challenge is running now until the 25th April. 

Parents and kids are sent all activities and can sign up here for free – visit