Degree students from Cornwall College Newquay have been providing an insight into the exciting world of science for local primary school children.
Around 140 Year 6 pupils from Newquay Junior Academy attended the ‘Cornwall Science Fair’ event at the College campus as part of British Science Week.
The wide range of interactive science-based activities on offer were all organised and delivered by first-year Foundation Degree students from Cornwall College as part of their Personal and Employability Skills Development (PESD) module.
“Our original inspiration came from the British Science Week theme of discovery. We wanted our watchers to come on the journey with us following a well-known story that maybe people didn’t know as well as they thought they did” said student Abigail Farrant, one of the foundation degree students in Wildlife Education & Media who took part in the day’s events.
She continued: “We hope that everyone who saw our play, adults and the children, get a taste for how education can be so much more than just a day in the class and can take away how there are so many exciting opportunities for learning everywhere you look!”
The ‘Cornwall Science Fair’ ties into a wider initiative of raising aspirations in relation to studying Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects that Cornwall College currently leads.
Throughout the day, the school children took part in a series of short sessions, designed to educate them on a number of different subjects and show them that a white coated scientist working in a lab is just one of many vastly different professions that can result from studying science.
The activities included making a necklace of their own DNA, completing a freshwater invertebrate’s survey from the onsite pond, shaping a surfboard, taking part in a recycling challenge, learning about the marine environment using the college’s virtual reality headsets and experiencing a play put on by the degree students about the lives of celebrated naturalists Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace.
The day culminated in an explosive finale of different outdoor, large-scale science experiments to all of the school children as a group. The series of experiments looked at how to get the most bang for your buck – speeding up the rate of chemical reactions used in rocket propulsion. These included the effect of particle size, state of matter and availability of oxygen on combustion reactions, including demonstration reactions of powder flames, whoosh bottles, coke fountains and elephant’s toothpaste.
For more information on the range of Zoology, Surf and Marine courses available at Cornwall College Newquay visit www.cornwall.ac.uk or call 0330 123 2523.