* Outreach News Archive * University of Bristol Press Releases

Outreach News Autumn 2012



Chemistry Experience Summer Camps Grant Awarded - 20/12/12

Bristol ChemLabS working with Bristol University's Widening Participation Office will be running two lots of two day residential courses for students in Years 11 and 12 from Cornwall, South Wales and the south of Birmingham in July. For students who meet widening participation criteria, the courses will be free of charge. The impact on university-wide applications will be the subject of a follow-up study.

Primary Schools get RSC Funded Live Chemistry - 20/12/12

Thanks to a Bristol & District RSC 'International Year of Chemistry Challenge' grant, six schools were visited by Alison Rivett between 1 November and 5 December 2012. Around 1,700 children aged between 4 and 11 saw the ChemLabS demonstration assembly 'Gases In The Air', along with around 100 teachers, teaching assistants and PGCE students.

This engaging presentation links to the materials and their properties section of the science curriculum and is especially designed to enthuse primary pupils, with lots of visual demonstrations, colourful experiments and even a few explosions! Several of these schools are working in challenging circumstances and are trying hard to raise achievement levels and aspirations amongst their pupils.

"Alison thank you so much, the show has certainly raised the aspirations and interest in the children." ~ Science Coordinator

The schools visited were Hillesley Primary School, (Gloucs) and the following Bristol primary schools: Victoria Park, St Anne's Park, Air Balloon Hill, Brentry and Filton Avenue Juniors.

ChemLabS Outreach in the Far East - 14/12/12

Tim Harrison and two postgraduate chemists spent a week at the National University of Singapore working with chemists there to deliver the Winter Chemistry School for local secondary students. Tim then went on to Hong Kong where he gave talks and lectures at several schools.


Cafè Científic: Química i Xocolata The Chemistry of Chocolate Goes Spanish - 29/11/12

Andy Chapman has continued with his outreach work whilst carrying out research in Spain having given the presentation 'Cafè Científic: Química i Xocolata' in Spanish to an audience in Tarragona. He remarked that "It's a shame they don't put milk in tea or use much marmalade here or I would have two more talks ready to go!"

Celebration of Landmark Demonstration Lecture - 22/11/12

Tim Harrison and Dudley Shallcross performed the 1000th lecture demonstration from the suite of talks entitled 'A Pollutant's Tale' in the University of Bristol's Great Hall to 650 Year 5 and 6 pupils from Bristol schools.

More details can be found here.

Change in Outreach Administrator - 22/11/12

Dr Preeti Kaur who has done a very professional job of Outreach Administrator for the last six months will be leaving to take up another post within the university. A new administrator will be appointed in the new year. In the interim Dr Beatrice Cattoz, who has been working in chemistry outreach at Bristol for the last 3 years, has agreed to step in.


Bristol ChemLabS Sets A New October Outreach Record - 31/10/12

Whilst the new undergraduate term may have only recently begun, schools have been back for sometime. Bristol ChemLabS has been working with around 60 schools and over 6600 pupils in 12 counties ranging from Devon and Cornwall through to Yorkshire and Northumbria. photo collage of moments in the demonstration

4350 primary pupils (some in reception classes) have had their science curricula supported through a total of 21 hour-long chemistry demonstration assemblies on ‘Gases in the Air’ either in their own schools or in nearby schools.  More than 2200 secondary school students have seen a variety of lecture demonstrations including those of ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’, ‘Fragrance Chemistry’ and ‘Chemistry for the Terrified’.  Over 200 teachers have also been engaged. In addition, 94 Post 16 students have spent time in the undergraduate teaching laboratories at Bristol and many more have been recipients of in-school workshops on spectroscopy led by Preeti Kaur.

The majority of the demonstrations were given by Tim Harrison. Dudley Shallcross, Alison Rivett and postgraduates Sarah Glover and Sophie Franklin also presented science assemblies. In one case the head teacher said "It was a historic day, as it was the first time a female scientist had visited the school and given the children such an experience".

Tim Harrison said “This level of engagement comes about through careful planning, organisation and people putting themselves out. This scale of the engagement would not have been possible without funding from small project grants and sponsorship from the Royal Society of Chemistry, EDF Energy, the AstraZeneca Science Teaching Trust and the Sidmouth Science Festival.

Professor Nick Norman, Head of the School of Chemistry, said “Once again, Tim and his colleagues have shown what an amazing job they do in reaching both pupils and teachers across all ages and geographical areas. Well done indeed!”

Full details of the outreach events can be found on the ChemLabS Outreach web pages.

For the University of Bristol press release, click here

North East of England Tour Completes a Busy Month of Lecture Demonstrations - 29/10/12

Tim Harrison, assisted by Sophie Franklin, visited 9 primary schools in five counties in the north East of England in five days. A total of 2204 pupils from Reception to Year 6 and 90 teachers from 12 primary schools were treated to performances of the demonstration assembly 'Gases in the Air'. Eight of the visits were part of an AZSTT sponsored project.

Mid Cornwall Short Tour a Success - 13/10/12

A two day visit to mid Cornwall saw Tim Harrison and postgraduate Sarah Glover gave seven lecture demonstrations and two impromptu lessons in seven state schools. Altogether a total of approximately 1130 students and 60 teachers were entertained and educated. The tour was sponsored by the Western Region of the Analytical Division of the RSC as an International Year of Chemistry Challenge project.

The head teacher of Tregony Primary School said "It was a historic day, as it was the first time a female scientist had visited the school and given the children such an experience".

Demonstration Tour a Major Success - 08/10/12

The week-long tour by John Kilcoyne (Sunderland) and Tim Harrison (Bristol) engaged 1035 secondary students from 14 schools, 408 primary pupils from 9 schools, and 90 other members of the wider community.


An RSC International Year of Chemistry Challenge Grant Awarded to Primary Outreach - 12/09/12

The Bristol and District Branch of the Royal Society of Chemistry have accepted sponsorship, through the IYC Challenge program, that will see Alison Rivett visit 6 schools over 3 days to deliver the 'Gases in the Air' demonstration assembly to around 1000 primary pupils and their teachers in the early part of the autumn term. The schools will all be in the region of the local RSC branch.

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