Presentation of the La main à la pâte Foundation

History of the La Main à la Pâte Foundation


The La main a la pâte Foundation is a French organisation for the renewal of science teaching in schools, with three founding members: the French Academy of Sciences, Ecole normale supérieure of Paris (ENS) and Ecole normale supérieure of Lyon (ENS Lyon). In order to help teachers implement inquiry-based science education in the classroom, a comprehensive approach was developed by La main à la pâte to support them. It is principally organised around:

  • Disseminating, promoting and organising professional development activities on renewed methods of science teaching;
  • Connecting the members of the science teaching community, in order to form a skills network;
  • Involving the scientific community, particularly in the form of classroom support for teachers;
  • Developing and sharing teaching resources;
  • A website with thousands of pages offering a variety of online services and resources, essentially aimed at teachers and teacher educators (;

Expertise in inquiry-based science education:

Thus, La main à la pâte (LAMAP) has been promoting scientific inquiry-based education in primary and lower secondary school, in France and elsewhere, for more than 15 years. Since 1996, La main à la pâte has explored nearly all of the aspects dealt with in the current project: inquiry teaching in schools, ICT, educational resources production, scientific collaboration, professional development activities and dissemination, international cooperation in developed and emerging countries, education for sustainable development. La main à la pâte has broad experience in combining innovative actions and practical implementation within large-scale education systems. The La main à la pâte team is experienced in ICT use (European e-learning award 2001), international multilingual cooperation and teacher Continuing Professional Development (in over 40 countries), production of resources including pedagogical kits for the classroom - certified La main à la pâte - with the involvement of private and public publishers and the industry. La main à la pâte / Ecole normale supérieure of Paris has been the General Coordinator of the FP6 projects Scienceduc and Pollen (<>), and of the PF7 Fibonacci project (


Expertise in Education for Sustainable Development:

Among all the resources designed for teachers, La main à la pâte has developed several class activities and teaching modules linking both topics of IBSE and Education for Sustainable Development, among which My home, my planet and me”, “The climate, my planet and me” and “Learning about biodiversity”.

The La main à la pâte Foundation will take responsibility for the overall project coordination (proposal drafting and submission; relations with the EC; administrative and financial management). La main à la pâte has held European project coordination responsibilities on three previous occasions (SciencEduc, Pollen and Fibonacci). Apart from project management, internal and external communication, overall coordination will also include scientific editing of all documents published in the project (website, newsletters, scientific parts of the reports…).

The coordination team (project activities and financial management) will check all steps, solve internal difficulties, organize coherent work timetables, ensure budget follow-up and report to the European Commission. The overall coordination will benefit from input of various staff from La main à la pâte, depending on the expertise required. .


Role of the organisation in the SUSTAIN Network:

  • European coordination of the SUSTAIN Network
  • Organisation of the kick off meeting

Co-organisation of the seminars, the European workshops and the conferences (selection of dates, preparation of the the program, choice of the experts and speakers) with the CPD provider coordinator in charge of the organisation of each event.




Project partners