Youngsters get to grips with science in week of events

Dukes School science week'Professor Brainstorm and Robyn Inglis
Dukes School science week'Professor Brainstorm and Robyn Inglis

Science was the name of the game for Alnwick pupils recently – and they chalked up plenty of fun in the process.

The Duke’s Middle School played host to a range of experts in the field during their successful science week.

Among the experts were a number of parents of pupils who gave up their time to talk to the classes about their jobs and the role science plays in them.

The discussions were varied, from employment in a power station to working as a research scientist in embryo development.

The pupils were also visited by a number of outside speakers.

Among them was an engineer from EDF Energy who spoke to the children about how nuclear energy is made and its role in modern-day energy manufacture.

Mike Drinnin visited for a second time and completed a physiological measurements workshop with all of the pupils.

Professor Brainstorm proved a hit with Years 5 and 6 during his workshop in which he used liquid nitrogen to freeze a banana and balance a blown-up balloon on a bed of nails without it popping.

He even appeared to make water vanish from a cup until he explained to the pupils he had simply added a chemical called sodium polyacrylate to the cup beforehand and it turned the water into a gel.

Science week also saw eight pupils visit from Lindisfarne Middle School for a gifted and talented competition.

During the competition four year 7s from each school were asked to make a bouncing custard ball and the winner was the ball that bounced the highest. The year 8 competition required the pupils to become engineers for the morning and design and make the tallest tower they could from spaghetti and marshmallows.

For many, the highlight of the week was Jay’s Animal Encounters. All of the pupils were introduced to some bearded dragons, a tarantula, a giant frog, a python and a meerkat. During the workshop, Jay explained to the pupils how the animals’ features help them to survive and some pupils were even lucky enough to hold some of the animals.

The week of events was a success with both pupils and staff and everyone is looking forward to science week 2015.