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On Tuesday 24th June, Trent opened its doors to seven primary schools for the Trent College Science Festival, aimed at inspiring young minds.
The festival provided an opportunity for gifted young pupils from Year 5 to absorb themselves in Science for the day and make use of Trent College's laboratories and resources. Schools from the local area entered teams of four who spent the morning in Physics, Chemistry and Biology laboratories undertaking a number of challenging forensic and chemical practical activities, assisted by their own helpers from our Sixth Form Science students.
The morning began in the Physics laboratories …
Students moved on to the Chemistry labs and were donned with safety spectacles and laboratory aprons, then carried out experiments where they added different chemicals together using test tubes and pipettes. Their task was to carry this out carefully and record what they observed as accurately as possible. They saw fizzing, colour changes and solids being formed from liquids.
Finally, the pupils got to take part in forensic science activities and tried to identify the suspect from the clues left at a ‘crime scene’. This included fingerprint and tyre print analysis, chemical analysis of soil samples, chromatography and microscopic fibre examination.
Mr Pete Dudgeon from West Bridgford Junior School commented that “the children seemed to enjoy themselves, and the teacher who attended, Mr Cunningham, said that everyone had a good time.”
In the afternoon, pupils were amazed by a science magic show by Richard Robinson who took on “The Big G” with a demonstration of balance, pivots and sleight of hand. An awards ceremony followed to recognize pupils’ efforts throughout the day. There were runner-up prizes awarded to West Bridgford Junior School, with the overall Science Festival prize being awarded to Sutton Bonington Primary School. They were presented with science books for the pupils as well as a cheque for £150 for the school to spend on science equipment.
Dr Wastie, Head of Biology and organiser of the Science Festival comments "This is the first time we've run such an event here and has been a special day in the Trent College calendar. It reminds me of what teaching is all about - inspiring a love of science in the young that they will hopefully carry with them into the future. There was certainly some promising scientific minds at work today! My colleagues, Dr Wakerley and Dr Morley helped enormously with the Chemistry and Physics activities, and the Year 12 helpers also need to be commended for their work in making the day run so smoothly."