Up - Skilling in Practical Science: Bristol ChemLabS and the N3 Bristol Primary Cluster Project

The Project

Bristol ChemLabS outreach has been awarded a grant by AstraZeneca Science Teaching Trust to work closely with nine of the twelve schools in the Bristol Education Authority's 'N3 cluster group' assisting in a number of areas of practical science for Key Stage 2 pupils in the academic year 2010/11. The project is being managed by the Bristol ChemLabS Director of Outreach Tim Harrison t.g.harrison@bristol.ac.uk.

Rational for the project

Primary pupils seldom experience practical investigations in the physical sciences in school. The two biggest hurdles to this are

Pupils often are switched off science because they equate science activity as a pen and paper exercise and do not experience the excitement and stimulation of handling apparatus and chemicals whilst problem solving. This project also ties in with the National STEM Agenda, aspects of Project Enthuse and addresses concerns of the Rocard Report (EU). There is an existing group of state-run primary schools, the N3 Bristol Cluster with its own internal communication system. These schools are in one of the UK's poorest performing Education Authorities year-on-year.