* Outreach News Archive * University of Bristol Press Releases

Outreach News Summer 2012


Chemistry Event at Disabled Youngsters' Camp Gets OfSTED Thumbs-up - 21/08/12

Bristol ChemLabS provided an afternoon of chemistry for 30 disabled boys from The Wirral area of NW England and their 30 assistants at Heswell Camp, Barnston. The primary and secondary aged students had a wide range of physical disabilities.

"The children and the helpers were very entertained by your presentation and the hands-on workshop after. We were all raving about it even after a few days later".

We were visited by an Ofsted official that day and he told us "that never in his time did he see a Chemistry workshop held at camp" and also that "all the children were engrossed in the lecture and captivated by the science!"

Open University Residential Schools at Bristol ChemLabS - 02/08/12

A total of 27 mature students taking the Open University course SXC288 Practical Science: Chemistry and Analysis spent three days working in the undergraduate teaching laboratories. The students were introduced to the fundamental skills of chemical synthesis and characterisation in Bristol ChemLabS 'exceptionally well equipped' laboratories.

During the first two days in the laboratory the students engaged with a circus of experiment with the final day spent in a day-long experiment that consolidated many of the skills acquired. As with Bristol's own undergraduate chemists the students made use of an adapted Dynamic Laboratory Manual (DLM) and needed to complete pre-laboratory and safety tests online before entering the lab.

These courses are the first of what is hoped to be an annual partnership between the School of Chemistry and the Open University. The course was developed and run by Jenny Slaughter from the School of Chemistry at Bristol and Eleanor Crabb for The Open University.


'A Pollutant's Tale' Reaches 1000th Performance this Autumn - 31/07/12

To celebrate the 1000th performance of the lecture 'A Pollutant's Tale' Tim Harrison and Dudley Shallcross will present the lecture demonstration to an audience of invited primary school pupils and others at the University of Bristol's Great Hall in the Wills Memorial Building on 23 November 2012.

'A Pollutant's Tale' was created by Dudley Shallcross and Tim Harrison eight years ago and involves the chemistry of the atmosphere in its simplest performances and includes climate change in the extended versions. It has been seen by an estimated 250 000 people spread over 6 continents. The lecture has often been performed by many of Bristol's postgraduate chemists and by Alison Rivett, ChemLabS primary science consultant. The demonstration lecture is also regularly performed by chemistry students and science demonstrators in South Africa at Rhodes University and at the Sci-Bono Science Centre in Johannesburg. The event is being coordinated by Bristol's Public Engagement office.

Summer Schools - 26/07/12

July is always a busy month for outreach activities as it includes the main residential summer school season. Three summer schools were held this month including the eighth Bristol Trinity College, Dublin summer school, the third chemistry camp for those in Year 12 considering chemistry degrees somewhere in the UK and a third annual summer school for Maltese school students. Other nationalities represented were Chinese, South African, Filipino and Hungarian.


RSC Analytical Competition - 26/06/12

Bristol ChemLabS played host to the UK finals of the Royal Society of Chemistry's Analytical Competition for Year 12 students. The 18 teams, all winners of their regional events, came from all over the UK. A full report may be found here.


Outreach Administrators to Change - 28/05/12

Bristol ChemLabS Outreach Administrator Elle Wadsworth left at the end of May to take up a new position in California. Elle has been very effective in her administration duties and as a graduate chemist, she has also been very busy in a teaching role in outreach activities. Dr Preeti Kaur is taking over the Outreach Administration post alongside her research into extremophiles.


Maltese Science Week - 15/04/12

The annual Maltese Science Week, sponsored by the National Student Travel Service was held at the nature reserve at Xrobb L'Ghagin Nature Park. Tim Harrison and Sarah Glover presented 5 performances of the lecture demonstration 'A Pollutant's Tale' to a total of 720 students and pupils from a variety of primary and secondary schools from across the islands of Malta and Gozo.

Apart from their lecturing duties, the Bristol ChemLabS pair also judged the national science competitions for all three age groups. Work from 41 schools was on show.

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