East Kent Science Jamboree 2015
Discovery Park, Sandwich
East Kent Science Jamboree 2015
Discovery Park, Sandwich
Mini monsters, freaky fungi, crystal towers and dancing ooze were in evidence at Discovery Park as today’s scientists, based on campus, did their bit to inspire the next generation.
More than 2,000 children aged 10 to 11 from more than 50 Kent primary schools took part in the East Kent Science Jamboree, finding out from the professionals fascinating insights into what makes the world tick – in a fun and informative way.
The Year Six children took part in bite sized workshops and experiments, designed to spark an interest in science subjects and complement their curriculum. Activities with names like ‘Floating Fluids’ and ‘Witches Cauldron’ were the order of the day.
A host of Discovery Park tenants gave up their time to run many of the workshops, including model railway brand leader Hornby, which introduced children to print pictures of their heads using state-of-the-art 3D scanning.
Children taking part in science firm, Tetrad’s workshop had an explosively messy time, as the company’s scientists revealed how much around them – in the air we breathe, the things we handle every day – that is dependent on Chemistry.
Witches Cauldron and Giant Bubbles, run by cancer research company Altermune, saw children making giant bubbles using carbon dioxide and washing up liquid and experimenting with raisins in fizzy soft drinks.
Staff from Pfizer held various chemical challenges throughout the two days showing children how different substances reacted when combined, including an early taste of winter – creating their own snow.
Kent and Medway STEM, East Kent College and Canterbury Christ Church University also presented fun workshops with university students passing on their skills, knowledge and enthusiasm to a younger generation.
The event, now in its third year took place on Wednesday 10 June and Thursday, 11 June. Sponsors of the event included Discovery Park, pharmaceutical giant Mylan, the Royal Society of Chemistry and Pfizer.
Kimberley Anderson, corporate relations manager at Discovery Park, said: “The great thing about the Science Jamboree is seeing the expressions on the faces of the children as they experience what science is all about, away from the classroom – full of noise and fun and inspiration.
“Events like these encourage young people to come away with an interest and passion for STEM subjects. And I have no doubt, that for many of the 2,000 here over the two days, a spark will have been lit that will last a lifetime.”
John Coad, from Kent Festival of Science, which organises the annual event, said: “Hundreds of children will have left the Science Jamboree enthused and excited by science.
“If only a small number of them recognise more clearly that science is all around us and is vitally important, we will have more young scientists pursuing a career in science and continuing the amazing work being done at places like Discovery Park.”
A number of specially invited guests representing education, the arts and local councils, came along to visit the Science Jamboree. Here is a selection of what they had to say about the event:
Dr Simon Harvey, Director of Life Sciences, Canterbury Christ Church University, said: “Events like the Science Jamboree are critical. If we don’t get children interested, and female students particularly, in science at this age we have completely missed them.
“Our activity at the event – Mini Monsters and Freaky Fungi – allowed children to turn detective, looking at spiders and other creatures under the microscope, the kind of work that would take place in any laboratory.”
Tracey Savage, Headteacher, Sandwich Technology College, said: "The Science Jamboree was quite simply, amazing. To see so many students enthused and interested in Science was inspiring.
“Ensuring that children see the importance of science, maths, technology and engineering is essential and that was certainly what I witnessed today.
“Discovery Park have done a fantastic job in organising so many fascinating and hands on events, involving numerous companies and institutions, for so many students. I was really impressed and was very grateful to have been invited to see it for myself."
Jane Hughes, Associate Principal, Apprenticeships and Business Partnerships, said: “East Kent College are happy to support such a great event as it gives our science students, based at Discovery Park, the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learnt and show future students and apprentices how exciting a career in science is.”
Cllr Sue Chandler, Chairman of Dover District Council, said: “It was really exciting to see so many children enjoying science – what wonderful opportunities Discovery Park is providing for our children and young people.”
Cllr Paul Graeme, Mayor of Sandwich, said: “This is my second time attending the Science Jamboree and I have to say, I find it fascinating, almost as much as the youngsters taking part.
“A lot of time goes into the event, including many businesses based on site and the impact is clear. Children leave this event really inspired by what they have seen. It is a delight to see.”
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