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Olle Kråkebolle og tareskogens mysterier

A scientific project that gets funded implies lots of work, as one can imagine, but it is not just all the sampling, lab experiments, data analysis, paper writing, conferences...p00.π It also means to share your findings with a part of the population outside the scientific environment, that might not otherwise have access to that information. That is the meaning of outreach activities, which you need to plan forehand, before applying for funding.

Within science, these activities are normally to write about your project in local newspapers, to share your findings in social media, and to give lectures, for instance. This blog is another way we can keep a conversation with everyone that is interested in our research as well ;) Since last year, the project has tried to bring over our findings to the young public through the so called Forskningsdagene. Forskningsdagene, or the "Research Days" in English, is an activity promoted by the Research Council of Norway and organized by the institutions. Last year, we introduced algae to different school classes. We showed them some specimens we took from our local area, and prepared some aquariums with some small sea creatures for the students to identify. We had a very special surprise as well, a sample version of a book I wrote, that we read together.

I have to say that this book was the most exciting outreach activity that we planned for ViralICE! Our objective was to create awareness among the little ones about the importance of algae in the sea, how marine ecosystems affect our daily life, and the role of marine viruses.

The current pandemic situation and the last lockdown we experienced here in Haugesund was the perfect excuse to start writing and painting. This is how "Olle Kråkebolle og tareskogens mysterier" ("Olle Kråkebolle and the mysteries of the Kelp Forest" in English) was created, which tells the story of a little boy called Trond that spends a day at the beach with his grandfather Terje. Trond and Terje find some Kelp on the shore and decide to make a soup with it, but before that happens, Trond discovers many secrets of our marine ecosystems through a sea urchin called Olle Kråkebolle (kråkebolle means sea urchin in Norwegian).

Here you can see some of the pictures from the creation process:

The book was written in English and translated into Norwegian by our Project Manager, Ingunn Alne Hoell. After all the work and the acceptance by everyone that read the sample version, we wanted to try to publish it. And the really good news is that the book has recently been published by Vormedal Forlag, here in Haugesund. That is the reason why the book is only in Norwegian, but we hope it can be published in many more languages! For this year, we will be holding some sessions with different schools during the Forskningsdagene again. However, this time, we will enjoy and read the actual book "Olle Kråkebolle og tareskogens mysterier".

I would like to thank everyone involved in the creation of this little project, and I hope that small, and not that small ones can learn and enjoy reading to the book. You can get a copy physically at the editorial ( Vormedal Forlag, Sørhauggata 137, 5527 Haugesund), or online following the link ( or by clicking the picture below:

Until the next post! :)


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