Science at St Mark’s

On Tuesday 20 May, students at St Mark’s, assisted by Head of Science, Mr James Cuthbert and Science Technician, Dr Helen Sheppard, held the second of their ‘Science @ St Marks’ sessions. The after school workshops have been organised by the Science Faculty to provide an introduction to Science at secondary school for primary-aged children and their parents in an informative yet fun and exciting way.

Pupils from the local primary schools were invited to come along to the free workshops to encourage younger children and their parents to visit St Mark’s and find out for themselves what life and lessons at secondary school are really like. Pupils from St Saviour’s Junior school, St Stephen’s Primary School and Bathampton Primary School attended, along with their parents.

The children learnt about some unusual things that electricity can do, ably assisted by six St Mark’s students, Maria, Isobel, Bryan, Zac, Callum and Cain.

Science Technician, Dr Helen Sheppard, said, “We started the session talking about what materials conduct electricity before electroplating a coin. This was followed by a lot of fun with the Van Der Graaff generator, watching what happens to your hair when you generate a lot of static electricity.”

“It was really great to see the younger children getting hands on with science with their parents – many of whom hadn’t been in a science laboratory since their own school days. Our St Mark’s students were proud to show off their school and excited to be involved in some ‘fun’ science”.

Milo, a Year 4 pupil from St Saviour’s Junior School, was thrilled with the event, commenting,

“I thought the lesson was really good quality. It was really exciting. There were loads of really good cliff-hangers because they said things like “We’ll do that at the end”. I liked it because it wasn’t normal primary science. It was nothing at all like a lesson (in a good way). They did show you but they let you find out what happens by yourself. All in all it was EPIC!”

Pupils left St Mark’s excited to attend further sessions in June when they will investigate the effect of exercise on our heart and lungs along with some experiments on the chemistry in our shopping basket.