CHeMneT Events Spring 2008

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30 April: The Royal Society of Chemistry Analytical Chemistry Competition South West Heat 2008

The recent heat, one of two in the South-West, saw 8 teams of Y12 students taking part in this RSC annual competition. Schools coming from regions as far away as Devon and the north of Gloucestershire took part in several hours of practical work. Postgraduate SEA Preeti Kaur also presented a short talk on an aspect of her research into extremophile chemistry as part of the visit to the Undergraduate Teaching Laboratories.

The winners of the competition were Bristol Grammar School, with Colston's Collegiate in second place and Blundell's School narrowly in third position.

More information about the RSC Schools' Analyst Competition

29 April: 'A Pollutant's Tale', Dr Challoner's Grammar School, Buckinghamshire

Images from the "A Pollutant's Tale" lecture

Tim Harrison, assisted by Linda Sellou, gave 3 lecture demonstrations to mixed age audiences at the Amersham science college. A total of 280 students and staff saw the performances.

17 April: Science Cafe, Graeme College, South Africa

Thanks to sponsorship by the British Council, Dudley Shallcross and Tim Harrison spent time discussing the factors involved in climate change with Y11 at this boys' school in Grahamstown.

16-22 April: SciFest Africa 2008, South Africa

Dudley Shallcross and Tim Harrison presented ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’ 6 times at Africa's largest annual science festival, which was held in the university city of Grahamstown on the Eastern Cape. The audiences, totalling 1,300, mainly comprised of school students from the city townships in the surrounding region.

Thomas Hardye student in the lab

15 April: Grignard Synthesis for Thomas Hardye School, Dorset

Chris Holland took the group of 20 Thomas Hardye A-Level chemists through a complex piece if synthetic chemistry relevant to the A-Level specification of this science college. Chris was aided by SEA postgraduate chemists Preeti Kaur, Martha Tomlinson and Jessica Martin.

Jersey Science Week

Watch a clip from ITV Channel News about the Science Week

Report on the Jersey Science Week in the University's News section

04 April: ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’ Lecture Demonstrations, at Quennevais School, Jersey

photo from JerseyFour lecture demonstrations were given by Tim Harrison to 680 students from Y7, 8, 9 & 11.

03 April: ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’ Lecture Demonstrations, Jersey College for Girls, Jersey

photo from JerseyFour lecture demonstrations were given by Tim Harrison to students from Y7-12 from JCG, Victoria College and Beaulieu Schools. A total of 440 students saw the performances.

02 April: ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’ Lecture Demonstrations at Haute Vallee School, Jersey

photo from JerseyTim Harrison gave 3 lecture demonstrations of ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’ to all 850 Y7-11 students at the school. A 4th lecture demonstration was given at the school to 93 Y8 students at the neighbouring De La Salle School.

01 April: ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’ Lecture Demonstrations at Hautlieu School, Jersey

Photo from JerseyTim Harrison gave this talk to 50 Year 12 Chemistry students from Hautlieu , Victoria College and De La Salle schools. This was followed by a talk for 130 Y10 & 13 students, another for 50 Highlands College level 3 students and a final lecture for 130 Y11 Hautlieu students.


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31 March: ‘A Pollutant’s Tale’ Lecture Demonstrations, Granville School, Jersey

Tim Harrison gave 3 sessions of this talk to all 650 students in Years 7 to 11.

28 March: Bristol University@Crypt Day, Gloucester

This was another joint Bristol ChemLabS and AIMS visit to the Crypt School in Gloucester. Three academic staff presented to a total of 600 students. Tim Harrison presented the lecture 'A Pollutant's Tale' to 240 Y7 & 8. He also gave 2 talks on atmospheric chemistry to Y6 primary students from Heron, Hempsted and Barnwood primary schools. Rich Pancost gave separate presentations to 40 Post 16 chemists and 120 Y10 students on aspects of geochemistry. Lauren Hughes of AIMS, the CETL at the Faculty of Medical Science, worked within the Mobile Teaching Unit with 60 Y12 sports studies and biology students. She also worked with 20 Y11 students who are interested in following a career in medicine.

27 March: Salters' Festival of Chemistry 2008

Photo of students taking part in the Salters' Festival in the Labs

48 young chemists from 12 schools from Bristol, Gloucester and Somerset took part in the annual chemistry competition in the undergraduate chemistry laboratories at Bristol ChemLabS.

Two practical challenges were held. Bulcarras School, Cheltenham won Salters' and Bristol Grammar School won Bristol ChemLabS', with each school receiving £100 pounds.

The competition was judged by Sandy Jack , formerly of Gloucestershire Setpoint , Jauyah Tuah of the STEP Science Centre, Brunei Darussalam and Phyllis Fiadzomor, an SEA chemistry postgraduate.

The afternoon also saw a lecture demonstration by Tim Harrison.

Photo of Tim Harrison giving his lecture demonstration

The other schools that took part were Backwell (Bristol), Cirencester Kingshill School (Gloucs), Hanham High (Bristol), Haygrove School (Somerset), King Edmund Community School (Yate), Nailsea School (N. Somerset), The Robert Blake Science College (Somerset), Worle School (N. Somerset ), Wyvern Community School, (N. Somerset) and The King's School (Gloucs).

University of Bristol Press Release

Coverage in the Bristol Evening Post

26 March: Aspiration Raising Day for Bristol Schools

32 Gifted and Talented KS4 students from the Monks Park and Henbury Schools were joined by 15 Y9 students from Malmesbury School, Wilts. to see what it would be like to be an undergraduate chemist in the School of Chemistry.

The morning started with a safety briefing before the young chemists were challenged to extract caffeine from tea leaves. The postgraduate Chemistry SEAs who helped with the practical work were James Marshall, Elizabeth Lambert, Kara Cubbage and Jessica Martin

After a tour of the department the students were treated to 3 talks in a lecture theatre. The first talk, by Lorraine Norman of the Widening Participation Office, discussed what it would be like to be an undergraduate at Bristol. SEA Preeti Kaur then gave a talk on part for her PhD research on extremophile chemistry. The afternoon session was completed with the lecture demonstration 'A Pollutant's Tale' given by Dudley Shallcross and Steve Henshaw.

The Bristol schools were sponsored by Bristol Charities and the Malmesbury students by the Triple Science Network.

20 March: 'A Pollutant's Tale', Bristol Grammar School

Tim Harrison gave a performance of this ever popular lecture demonstration for 130 Y7 students at this local school.

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13 March: Mayor’s Science Award Ceremony, Southgate School, Enfield

Tim Harrison aided by Marcus Medley presented 'A Pollutant's Tale' as part of the evening science presentation ceremony at this school in north London. Y10 students from several schools had spent the day in competition in a local event sponsored by the borough’s mayor. The audience of 75 comprised students, parents, teachers and members of the Excellence in Cities group.

13 March: Lecture at Colyton Grammar School, Devon

As part of a busy National Science and Engineering Week 2008, Alison Rivett presented the lecture demonstration 'A Pollutant’s Tale' to 120 enthusiastic and inquisitive Y9 students at this Devon specialist science school.

Click here for a report on the school's website.

12 March: National Science and Engineering Week 2008 Schools Conference

The conference, aimed at students aged 14 -18 featured the following talks: Dr June McCombie (Nottingham): 'Chemistry in Space', Prof Julian Eastoe (Bristol) and Dr Jason Riley (Imperial): 'Some Chemistry of the Mobile Phone', Dr Chris Wormald (Bristol): Lecture Demonstration 'The Chemistry of Rockets' as well as one by Tim Harrison.

These lectures were sponsored by the Bristol and District Branch of the Royal Society of Chemistry and Bristol ChemLabS.

12 March: Chemistry for our Future Careers Fair, Paignton, Devon

Alison Rivett, David Smith (who is the School of Chemistry's Admissions Tutor as well as the Bristol ChemLabS Manager) and postgraduate chemists Sarah Newberry & Samantha Riches represented Bristol ChemLabS at this chemistry-themed event for GCSE & A-Level students from 10 schools in the local area. Organised by the Royal Society of Chemistry as part of their 'Chemistry for the Future' programme, the Fair took place in the tranquil surrounding of Paignton Zoo, with chemists from a range of backgrounds manning stands.

David, Sarah and Samantha answered many questions about student life and studying chemistry, as well as demonstrating the strange properties of the 'Polymorph' polymer. Students, teachers and scientists alike enjoyed the pops, bangs and explosions created during a short lecture demo on 'Gases in the Air', given by Alison.

10 March: St Antony's Leweston School, Dorset

As part of National Science and Engineering Week, Tim Harrison and postgraduate Preeti Kaur gave lectures on extremophile chemistry and perfume chemistry as well as the lecture demonstration 'A Pollutant's Tale'. The Sherbourne girl's school played host to a total audience of 245 students from Y9-13 from 5 local secondary schools.

photo of Fiona being interviewed

07 - 16 March: Science Week SuperSonicFM Radio Interviews Leicestershire

During National Science and Engineering Week Bristol University researcher Fiona Gill was interviewed by secondary school students from English Martyrs' School, Leicester for their radio station SuperSonicFM - The Sound of Science. The project, set up by teacher Mr Paul Wilby, saw students managing the technical aspects of the broadcast, as well as interviewing scientists from around the UK. Fiona was interviewed by two sets of students for different shows, about her PhD research on fossil cold seep communities and about her current research at Bristol on modern and fossilised animal dung. Bristol Chemistry graduate and former SEA Dane Comeford was also featured.

This event was sponsored by Bristol ChemLabS Outreach.

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27 February: Gifted and Talented Chemistry Day for the Trowbridge Consortium

90 Y8 & 9 students and their teachers from Lavington School, Clarendon School and John of Gaunt School in Wiltshire came to Bristol ChemLabS for an aspiration-raising day partially sponsored by the Triple Science Network.

One group of 50 students extracted caffeine from tea in a multistage extraction and purification preparation, which involved equipment and chemicals not usually found in schools. The remainder of the group worked through a circus of experiments: using uv-vis spectroscopy to determine the concentration of a coloured solution, making benzoic acid, a food preservative or doing a gravimetric exercise to determine the sugar concentration in fizzy drinks.

In the afternoon the students enjoyed lectures from Tim Harrison, Preeti Kaur and Dudley Shallcross.

25 February: St Mary's School, Delhi, India

Tim Harrison gave an hour-long lecture entitled 'Perfumes - Smelly Chemistry' to a mixed age group of 40 senior chemistry students and 10 science teachers at the 5-18 school in the suburbs of New Delhi.

07 February: St Bede's Catholic College, Laurence Weston, Bristol

Tim Harrison gave two performances of 'A Pollutant's Tale' to 120 KS4 students and to 100 Y9 students at the Bristol-based Specialist Science College.

05 February: ‘Meet the Scientists Day’, Thomas Hardye School, Dorset

Postgraduate chemists Caroline Grainger, Claire Hasler, Marcus Medley and Judith Brown took part in the first 'Meet The Scientists' event at the Dorchester-based science college. The event involved groups of 5-6 school students from Y9, 10 & 11 interviewing several different scientists. The students were keen to find out about their day-to-day jobs, their qualifications and what they liked and disliked about being a scientist. All four Bristol SEAs enjoyed meeting the students, showing them the demonstrations they had brought to represent their research, and showing that science can be a valuable and rewarding career.

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31 January: 6th Form Chemistry Lectures, Thomas Hardye School Dorset

SEA postgraduate chemists Steve Hensaw and Preeti Kaur presented lectures along with Tim Harrison at this Dorset School as part of an AimHigher funded programme.

30 January: GCSE Chemistry Day for Triple Science Ridgeway School, Katharine Lady Berkeley's School, Colston Girl's School and Downside School. (CHeMneT)

A total of 60 Y10 students from Ridgeway School (Swindon), Katharine Lady Berkeley's School (Wotton-Under-Edge), Colston Girl's School (Bristol) and Downside School (Bath) visited the School of Chemistry to spend the day as an undergraduate chemist.

The school students worked alongside chemistry SEAs Martha Tomlinson, Sarah Newberry, Aoife Grant, Ben Cheesman and Jirut Wattoom in the laboratory, extracting caffeine from tea leaves. After a short tour of the department and lunch, the students spent time in a lecture theatre. Ian Blenkharn firstly gave a talk on what it is like to be an undergraduate student at Bristol. Chemistry postgraduate SEA Preeti Kaur gave a talk on 'The Chemistry of Extremophiles'. The day was completed with a performance of 'A Pollutant's Tale' by Tim Harrison.

This outreach activity was sponsored by the Triple Science Network for members of CHeMneT.

25 January: Regional SCI Lecture at Clifton College, Bristol

Photo of Tim Harrison and Dudley Shallcross

Tim Harrison and Dudley Shallcross, the Society of Chemical Industry Regional Lecturers for 2007, completed their duties by presenting an evening performance of 'A Pollutant's Tale' lecture to two dozen students and their teachers at Clifton College.

23 January: Y13 CREST Gold Award, Badminton School

SEA postgraduate chemist Phyllis Fiadzamor worked with the group of Y13 biologists on their chemical analysis of the iron content in foods.

21 January: 'A Pollutant's Tale', Sir William Romney's School, Gloucs.

Tim Harrison gave 3 presentations of the demonstration lecture at this school in Tetbury. A total of 360 students inY9, 10 and 11 saw the performance in their school hall. The lecture demonstration involves liquid nitrogen, dry ice and a few minor explosions.

Teachers please note that this lecture demonstration may be delivered at most venues in the UK provided sufficient notice is given. Please email for more information or see the latest version of the CHeMneT e-newsletter.

18 January: Bradley Stoke Community School, Bristol

As part of the school's Science Day, Tim Harrison gave a presentation of the lecture demonstration 'A Pollutant's Tale' for the 120 Y9 students. The AIMS - Bristol ChemLabS Mobile Teaching Unit was also present at this local school, where Dr Lauren Hughes of the Faculty of Medical Sciences was working with other students.

16 January: Year 9 Chemistry Day St Antony's Leweston School, Dorset

Thirty-seven young chemists from the Sherborne-based school spent a fruitful day at Bristol ChemLabS as part of the Schools Laboratory Programme. The morning was spent in practical work in the laboratory working with SEAs Preeti Kaur, Stephen Henshaw and Lisa Teece. After a tour of the School of Chemistry the students enjoyed a lecture by Preeti Kaur on extremophile chemistry before a lecture demonstration by Dudley Shallcross and Tim Harrison.

11 January: Chemistry Presentations, Badminton School, Bristol

Bristol chemists Phyllis Fiadzomor and Tim Harrison were treated to a series of presentations given by Y10 students as a follow up to a visit to the School of Chemistry last term when they spent the day investigating some  aspects of alternative fuels and climate change as part of a Royal Society-sponsored event. The students who presented will be awarded Science Communicators certification.

09 January: Aspirational Chemistry Visit

54 Y10 students and their teachers from Winchcombe School spent the day at Bristol ChemLabS experiencing what it is like to be a Chemistry student for the day.

The students from the Gloucestershire Science College spent two and a half hours working on a series of organic chemistry practicals designed in conjunction with their science staff to augment current work in their science and chemistry lessons.

In the afternoon a programme of  talks and a lecture were enjoyed. Doug Jennings (Widening Participation Office) talked about what it is like to be a student at Bristol. Postgraduate Chemist Preeti Kaur gave a talk on her research into aspects of extremophile chemistry. The final lecture demonstration was given by Dudley Shallcross and Tim Harrison on some aspects of atmospheric chemistry.

The postgraduate chemistry SEAs who worked with the students in the laboratory were Henk Eshuis, Derek Gillespie, Jane Fletcher, Junwei Wang and Elizabeth Lambert.

This day was sponsored by the Triple Science Network.

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* CHeMneT Events Autumn Term 2007 (October–December)

* CHeMneT Events Summer Term 2007 (May–September)

* CHeMneT Events Spring Term 2007 (January–April)

* CHeMneT Events Autumn Term 2006 (October–December)

* CHeMneT Events Summer Term 2006 (May–September)

* CHeMneT Events Spring Term 2006 (January–April)

* CHeMneT Events Autumn Term 2005 (October–December)

* CHeMneT Events Summer Term 2005 (April-September)

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