Saturday, 22 March 2014

National Science and Engineering Week part 2

WOW! Can't quite believe that Saturday has arrived - what a week we have had.
So here is a mini diary of what we have been up to this NSEW

Monday - a return visit to St Thomas' Primary Lydiate near Maghull in Merseyside. They decided to theme their NSEW around Alice in Wonderland so we created a special show just for them full of science magic with potions that changed colour when you followed the instructions on the label...SHAKE ME. Giant test tubes that went all different rainbow colours when Helen added a squirt of a greenish coloured liquid. Invisible balls of jelly that felt like eyeballs and a disappearing Cheshire cat. We all had a super time wearing our bunny ears.

Tuesday - a 5.00am start ( yes really!!) to get packed and pick up Helen for our day with Brabins Endowed primary school in Chipping in Lancashire.
in the middle of nowhere

a very early morning coffee en route

It was lovely to visit this picturesque and tiny village school again and the pupils were thrilled to see us. We shared our NSEW show with a few extra bits thrown in, for the very youngest and then for the older pupils. There were not many in each session so the "show" became very hands on for everyone.
Helen all ready to go

As the smell of toast wafted around the hall we had a short break and then it was two workshops back to back, first with years 3&4 looking at some of our amazing smart materials and setting up an experiment for the week investigating polymers. Years 5&6 continued the investigation looking at hydrogel balls to see if using hot water sped up their growth and what happened if you used coloured or salty water. After a great day we headed back down the M6 home, to unpack and get ready for the next day.

Wednesday - off we went to Warrington to visit Sankey Valley St James primary school where we did two shows - one for each key stage.

between shows at St James'

After lunch we did two workshops with mixed groups yr4&6 and yr5&6. We had a close look at how handwarmers work and discovered who had the warmest hands before making a batch of bathbombs. Sue ended up looking like a smurf as Josh accidentally squeezed the colour just a bit too hard and made a blue fountain!

Thursday - another new school for us - Dee Point Primary, Blacon in Chester.

This school has a caravan and three rhinos in the front garden!! We were working with key stage 2 today so started the day off with a show for the whole key stage and giving most of year 4 and their teacher a cold with our giant blue rhinovirus and Helen's glittery "snot". Then we moved out to a mobile classroom with year 6 where we got up close and personal with some of our smart materials and of course made some bath bombs. Year 6 were off swimming in the afternoon so let us use their classroom for a session with year 5 and then a final session of the day with year 4. Huge fun was had by all and the mobile smelled beautifully of bubble gum fragrance!

Friday - off to Knutsford for Tameside's Primary Headteachers conference at Cottons hotel. It was super to meet lots of other providers of exciting educational resources and - good for us - there were not many other science companies. After fantastic drumming display by some very enthusiastic school children we all manned our stands for a morning market place.

We had taken lots of our gadgets and gizmos for the teachers to play with while we chatted about how we could enrich their science lessons. Our energy sticks were an enormous draw - we could have parted with them many times over if they had been for sale (of course we love them so much we wouldn't let them go).

So a good end to a fun week and now all that is left is to wash up and tidy away the equipment....and then pack up for Ellesmere Port's STEM week at the National Boat Museum on Monday.

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