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Science at Home

Looking for high-quality resources to keep children and young people interested in and learning about science? The Physics Outreach team, in collaboration with the Departments of Chemistry and Biology, has been offering a weekly newsletter that highlights websites, apps, videos and hands-on activities suitable for ages 5-18 (and the rest of the family, too!). 

We hope that you've enjoyed the many and varied resources shared over the past few months and have mangaged to experiment, build, research, create, and engage with a wide range of scientific content. With summer holidays and schools planned to reopen in September, we're closing down the newsletter for now. However, all of our old newsletters are available below - plenty of inspiration to keep young minds active! 

Newsletter Archive

Science at home newsletter: 15th April 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our first Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: CREST Awards - Ages 5 - 14

https://library.crestawards.org/

CREST is a scheme designed to inspire young people to think and behave like scientists and engineers. Its learning resource library allows you to easily filter the vast number of resources by age and download challenge packs filled with lots of science based activities and ideas. The packs contain helpful hints and tips for you to use, explaining the scientific themes and offering guidance on conversation topics for your children.

Here are some of our favourite activities:

Ages 5-7: Rainbow collectors (Pages 40-43)

https://primarylibrary.crestawards.org/all-star-challenges/61746949

Science/Hands on

A resource from the Primary Challenges pack that challenges children to explore the colours around them and consider how these colours change with the seasons. The pack contains a guide for the person leading the activity (pages 40-41) and an activity sheet for the children to follow (pages 42-43).

Ages 7 - 11: A Sticky Problem (Pages 14-17)

Science/Hands on

A hands on activity designed to make children think about the different properties of glue and design methods to test these properties. Using kitchen cupboard supplies, children make three different glue recipes and test them out. There is an organiser guide to the activity (pages 14-15) and an activity sheet for the children (16-17).

Ages 11-14 : Which crisps are crispiest?

https://secondarylibrary.crestawards.org/which-crisps-are-crispiest/62134698

Scientific thinking/Hands on

A fun project to get children thinking about scientific experimental methods, whilst providing you with the opportunity to taste lots of crisps. The booklet contains a How to run the activity guide and a student brief and is largely student led. The student designs experiments to thoroughly test a crisp's crispiness.

Spotlight on Isaac Physics - Ages 15+

Physics/Online questions

Isaac Physics is a great online platform that aims to encourage insight and understanding of GCSE and A-level/IB physics through problem solving. There is a huge bank of self-marking practice and problem solving questions. As a response the the current situation they are also running virtual weekly lessons to support GCSE and A-level/IB students during school closures. The courses have already started but can be joined at any time and past videos and questions are available to catchup with. You will need to create a free account to access the lessons and we recommend setting one up for using the resource more generally as it will save your answers.

GCSE Physics: https://isaacphysics.org/pages/covid19_gcse

16+ Physics: https://isaacphysics.org/pages/covid19_alevel

 

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

Space to Learn Live Q&A: Ages 7+

Tuesday 21 April 2020, 2pm or 7pm

https://www.youtube.com/ISSETSpaceSTEM

Tune in for free for Space to Learn, an inspirational time with an astronaut, aimed at a younger audience. Hear the best space stories from a different guest astronaut each week with a LIVE Q&A - please submit questions via Twitter with #spacetolearn and tag @ISSET_STEM

My Skills My Life: Ages 11 -19

Thursday 23 April 2020, 1pm - 3pm

https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/3587462755800402443

WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) will be running an online My Skills My Life session, featuring a variety of fantastic role models in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) industry. The resource is aimed at girls aged 11-19 however, anyone is welcome to join in! This is a fantastic opportunity to meet some inspiring role models in the industry, to hear about their jobs and to ask them any questions you may have!

Register by following the link above to join the LIVE session.

Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 22nd April 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: Zoological Society of London - Ages 5 - 18

https://www.zsl.org/zsl-london-zoo/zsl-london-zoo-online-resources

The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is probably best known for its two zoos, London and Whipsnade. As an international conservation charity, they are committed to inspiring future generations through amazing experiences with animals, giving them a lifelong connection to wildlife and an understanding of the part that they can play. Their website has a variety of activity sheets that are sorted by key stage or topic. They also have a YouTube channel full of great videos about animals and life at a zoo and a Virtual London Zoo.

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ZSLvideo/featured

Virtual London Zoo: https://www.zsl.org/london-zoo-webcam

We've looked through their online resources and here are some of our favourites.

Ages 5-7: Habitats, Bug Hunt and Design-a-Bug

https://www.zsl.org/zsl-london-zoo/schools/key-stage-1-resources

Biology/Habitats and adaptations/Hands on/Art

Three activity sheets to teach children about habitats and which animals live in them. The Habitats activity sheet encourages children to draw animals that live in four different habitats. The Bug Hunt activity sheet is designed to get children out and about investigating microhabitats (small areas like back gardens or what you can see from your window) and counting and looking for different bugs, ants, small animals and birds. It has a page of instructions and helpful tips for carrying out the hunt. Having investigated bugs and habitats the children can then design their own.

Ages 7 - 11: Design an enclosure

https://www.zsl.org/zsl-london-zoo/schools/key-stage-2-resources

Biology/Habitats and adaptations/Art and Design

Design an enclosure encourages children to research animals and their habitats and consider what animals need to live happily. There are three sections; the first involves some research into an animal and what they might need for a comfortable enclosure. The children plan and design an enclosure on paper before making a 3D model out of materials around the house. The final activity to make a poster all about their chosen animal to be displayed by their enclosure. 

Ages 11-15 : Design and run a behaviour study

Ages 11 - 13: https://www.zsl.org/zsl-london-zoo/zsl-london-zoo-online-resources/key-stage-3-resources

Ages 13 - 15: https://www.zsl.org/zsl-london-zoo/zsl-london-zoo-online-resources/key-stage-4-resources

Biology/Working scientifically/Practical

behaviour study isl be a fun project to get children thinking scientifically as they design and run an animal behaviour study. This activity can be largely led by the children as they pick a subject for their behaviour study. This can be a pet, an animal in the garden, an animal from one of the zoo's webcams or even another human (although very understandably this could cause conflict). The children look at the habitat of their subject and how they have adapted to it. They then choose a behaviour, like eating habits, that they want to learn more about, design a test that allows them to do so and monitor behaviour for 10 minutes.

Ages 16+ : Exploring in situ and ex situ conservation

https://www.zsl.org/zsl-london-zoo/zsl-london-zoo-online-resources/post-16-resources

Biology/Conservation and human impact

Conservation is one of the ZSL's biggest areas of activity and in this research activity students look at the difference between conservation that takes place in an animal's natural habitat and conservation in artificial environments like zoos. The activity encourages students to look at the advantages and disadvantages of both methods and also look into a particular case study where one or both methods may be used.

 

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

SpaceX Starlink Satelites: All ages

Throughout the week commencing Monday 20 April 2020

https://findstarlink.com/#1526;3

Starlink satelites will be visible in the sky throught the week commencing Monday 20 April 2020. You can find out when and where they will be visible using the link above.

My Skills My Life: Ages 11 -19

Thursday 23 April 2020, 1pm - 3pm

https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/3587462755800402443

WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) will be running an online My Skills My Life session, featuring a variety of fantastic role models in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) industry. The resource is aimed at girls aged 11-19 however, anyone is welcome to join in! This is a fantastic opportunity to meet some inspiring role models in the industry, to hear about their jobs and to ask them any questions you may have!

Register by following the link above to join the LIVE session.

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Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 29th April 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: Royal Museums Greenwich - Ages 5 - 18

https://www.rmg.co.uk/schools-communities/learning-resources

The Royal Museums Greenwich learning resource page is set out really well to make it incredibly accessible. You can easily filter the vast number of resources by target age, school subject and resource type. What is particularly good is that whilst we will highlight some of their science resources, they have a terrific number of other resources that cover a range of subjects, from drama and literacy, to leisure & tourism and maths.

Here are some of our favourite science resources:

Ages 5-7: Shadows and silhouettes

https://www.rmg.co.uk/discover/teacher-resources/shadows-and-silhouettes

Physics/Light

A short video explaining how shadows are formed and what silhouettes look like. The downloadable pdf has some really helpful teaching notes with questions to ask your child and what answers they should be giving. There is also a fun activity sheet for the children with answers at the end. If your children enjoy this, why not try making shadow puppets.

Ages 7 - 14: Formation of the Solar System

https://www.rmg.co.uk/formation-solar-system

Physics/Astronomy

video starter explains how the Solar System was formed. The two accompanying activity sheets for KS2 (Ages 7-11) and KS3 (Ages 11-14) are very similar and consist of a crossword and comic strip that can be done together. There are answers to the crossword attached and notes as well.

Ages 15+ : How do we know how old the Sun is?

https://www.rmg.co.uk/discover/teacher-resources/how-do-we-know-how-old-sun

Physics/Astronomy

A short video begins this activity which explains how scientists determine the age of the Solar System. There are accompanying worksheets for GCSE  (KS4) and A-level/IB  (P16) students that explain some of the physics behind the Sun and asks a few questions to test understanding.

If the students would like to learn more about how the Sun and Solar System was formed, CERN have an excellent augmented reality app that can be downloaded from the App store, Play store or from the link below.

https://home.cern/resources/document/physics/big-bang-ar-app-background-information

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

The Astro Science Challenge: 7 - 11

Weekly missions starting 27 April 2020

http://www.astrosciencechallenge.com/

A space-science learning adventure for children aged 7-11 to inspire them in STEM subjects. Designed and delivered by the award-winning Unlimited Space Agency (UNSA), in collaboration with some of the UK’s most brilliant space science organisations. Children, as cadets, will complete a series of Missions through the Astro Science Challenge app, available from the App and Play stores, to become fully fledged Agents of UNSA.

Meet a scientist virtually: 11+

Thursday 30 April 2020, 5pm - 7pm

https://www.crick.ac.uk/whats-on/public-events/meet-a-scientist-virtually?fbclid=IwAR2_JVAAX8Rl_LDF48AUKlnN1Ld7pqnzpIOpJHLPh-P-KzBBdTOJQ1oTG4c

Find out what life in the lab is really like at this live Q&A. Scientists are taking to Instagram Stories to share behind-the-scenes insights into daily life as a research scientist, how they got to where they are today, and the big research questions that get them out of bed in the morning. 

Physics Online: Ages 15+

Every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday | GCSE: 10am, A-level: 2pm

GCSE: https://www.gcsephysicsonline.com/covid-19

A-level: https://www.alevelphysicsonline.com/covid-19

During school closures, Physics Online has designed a weekly lesson plan for GCSE and A-level/IB  students to allow them to continue their learning. Each week there are short videos and quick questions to test understanding, worksheets to go through and live streams at 10am for GCSE and 2pm for A-level that work through the answers. 


 Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 6th May 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: Scratch | Ages 5 - 11

Coding is becoming an essential skill in this technological age and there are lots of apps out there aiming to make learning code fun and interactive for children of all ages. Scratch is a programming language developed for children to not only learn the basic priciples of coding but also to think creatively and reason systematically. Here, we are highlighting Scratch and Scratch Jr. Both are free to use and come with video tutorials to guide children through different projects.

Ages 5-7: Scratch Jr

https://www.scratchjr.org/

Coding

Scratch Jr is designed for children aged 5-7 and is a free app available from the App and Play stores. There are nine different activities to work through at different levels of difficulty. Children can programme their character to have a dance party or drive across a city. There is also an introductory video that goes through how it works and an online guide to the different features

Ages 7-11: Scratch

https://scratch.mit.edu/

Coding

Scratch is similar to Scratch Jr but designed for older children. It is online based and is designed to allow children to be largely independent in their learning. There is a Scratch for Parents page that goes through what it is and how it works but the activities come with video tutorials for the children to go through themselves.

Spotlight on: Amazon Future Engineer| Ages 12+

https://amazon.firetechcamp.com/python/

Amazon have made their Future Engineer virtual coding programme free until 7 June. The course covers computer programming aspects in line with Key Stage 3 and 4 and by the end of the course students will have solved problems of an equivalent level to GCSE Computer Science courses.

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

STEM Ambassadors Live: 9+

Thursday 7 May 2020, All day from 10am

https://www.stem.org.uk/news-and-views/news/stem-ambassadors-live

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) Ambassadors will be presenting a day of half hour sessions from professionals in a range of science and engineering fields. A Question and Answer forum will also run alongside each session,

The event starts at 10am and will be live-streamed on the STEM Learning YouTube channel. The sessions will cover a range of ages, but will mostly be focused on older primary school and younger secondary school students.  

https://www.youtube.com/user/MyScienceLearning

Meet a scientist virtually: 11+

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCt5OA3LingpZBeEyPYmputQ

Every Monday, New Scientist are making available one talk aimed at school students, every Wednesday a family-friendly video and on Fridays, a world-leading scientist or author will be inspiring you to think about something over the weekend. 


Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 13th May 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: The Royal Institution - Ages 5 - 11

https://www.rigb.org/index.php?url=%2Ffamilies%2Fexperimental

The Royal Institution (RI) is an independent charity dedicated to connecting people with the world of science. They have designed a series of videos and activity sheets to make it easy to do science experiments at home. The link above will take you to a complete list of all their experiments. Each one comes with an info sheet with instructions on what you will need and how to perform the experiment. There are also a list of questions to ask your children, an explanation of the science and links to websites to go further into the topic. You can download badges and certificates as you complete different experiments.

The RI also has a YouTube channel of talks on a variety of topics for older audiences and an archive of old Christmas Lectures for younger audiences.

https://www.youtube.com/user/TheRoyalInstitution/featured

Here are some of our favourite experiments:

Ages 5-11: Balancing structures

https://www.rigb.org/families/experimental/balancing-structures

Science/Hands on

Balancing structures is a fun kitchen science activity that involves balancing a structure on top of a water bottle. The video goes through what you will need and now to run the activity. There are good explanations about why things balance. The info sheet also goes through this and suggests some websites to go to if you want to into more detail.

Ages 7-11: Candle chemistry

https://www.rigb.org/families/experimental/candle-chemistry

Science/Hands on

Candle chemistry is a fun activity you will probably want to put again and again where you investigate how you can relight a candle without touching the wick and what happens when you put a jar over a lit candle. All you need is a candle, a long lighting device, some glass jars of various sizes and a stopwatch. The video goes through how to run the experiment and what the science behind it is. The info sheet also goes through this as well and recommends websites that let you go into more detail.

Spotlight on: phyphox - 11+

https://phyphox.org/download/

Turn your phone into a mobile lab with this free app, available on the App and Play stores. Using features already on many smart phones, this app has been developed to allow people to perform experiments with just their mobile phone. There is a long list of experiments but we recommend the ones with instructional videos. They are also doing a #homelabchallenge where they highlight one of their experiments each week and make a video about how to perform it and a follow up video about what is going on.

https://phyphox.org/news/homelabchallenge-resonance/

Here are some of the experiments we like the look of.

Ages 11-14: Speed of Sound

https://phyphox.org/experiment/speed-of-sound/

Physics/Practical/Sound

A short video begins this activity which goes through how to use your phone to measure the speed of sound. It is a really fun thing to measure with just two phones and a ruler. Children can write their own method for calculating the speed of sound, draw a table to take results and then analyse the results they get.

https://phyphox.org/experiment/speed-of-sound/

Physics/Practical/Sound

A short video begins this activity which goes through how to use your phone to measure the speed of sound. It is a really fun thing to measure with just two phones and a ruler. Children can write their own method for calculating the speed of sound, draw a table to take results and then analyse the results they get.

Ages 14+: Free fall

https://phyphox.org/experiment/free-fall-2/

Physics/Practical/Acceleration

A short video begins this activity which goes through how to use your phone to measure the time something takes to fall to the ground or between two points. The experiment is well explained and a graph can be plotted of time versus height. From the graph you can calculate the acceleration due to gravity.

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

LET'S GO LIVE with Maddie and Gregg: 4-10

Weekdays, 11am

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQ0_JQL4wdQd-Xe5hC4PwTg

LET'S GO LIVE is a fun Science based YouTube series presented by Maddie Moate, best known for CBeebies TV series “Maddie's Do You Know?”, BBC Earth's “Earth Unplugged” and Fully Charged's latest series 'Maddie Goes Electric'. Each week is devoted to a new topic and there is always a hands-on aspect to them. You can watch live every weekday from 11am, or catch-up later and if you want more, Maddie already has over a hundred videos on her YouTube channel devoted to learning.

National Physical Laboratory| Measurement at Home: 9+

Weekly online challenge

https://www.npl.co.uk/measurement-at-home

Have a go at a weekly measurement challenge from the National Physical Laboratory. Using common household items you can measure how much force you have to apply to break a cornflake and post it online to #MeasurementAtHome. Each week they will be releasing a new experiment to have a go at.

The music of the stars: 14+

Online talk

https://www.york.ac.uk/news-and-events/events/public-lectures/summer-2020/music-stars/

The study of pulsations in stars allows us to probe the deep internal workings of a star and is the best known way to determine interior properties and dynamics. The vibrations are analagous to the vibrations in musical instruments and can tell us about the internal properties of a star. So, in a sense, each star has a unique musical 'voice'. This talk will share the modern science of pulsations, their analysis with different techniques and how new asteroseismic research is contributing to a revolution of understanding of stellar interiors. 


Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 20th May 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: ESERO UK - Ages 5 - 18

https://www.stem.org.uk/esero/news-and-views/news/space-challenges-home

The European Space Education Resource Office (ESERO) UK aims to use space to open doors for young people by delivering engaging, world-class teaching resources in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Linked with the National STEM Learning Centre, they have recently released a selection of resources for children aged 4 - 18. 

Here are some of our favourites:

Ages 5-12: Mission X: Train like an astronaut

https://www.stem.org.uk/missionx

Space/PE/Hands on

Mission X encourages children complete activities to earn points and help the mascots, Luna and Leo, walk to the Moon. Whilst it's usually a classroom activity, anyone can sign up for this year's challenge. Mission X has two different types of activity to encourage children to train like an astronaut: physical activities, to develop strength, endurance, coordination, and spatial awareness which are suitable for 4+; and scientific activities which focus on STEM subjects and develops scientific reasoning and teamwork which are suitable for 8+. All the activities can be found here, and many offer the activity in more than one language and all have a teaching support guide. We particularly like this activity where we study the importance of staying hydrated and get to make fake urine! Download the teacher instructions as well as the student instructions to get the urine colour test chart.

Ages 12-18: Climate Detectives @ home

https://climatedetectives.esa.int/home/

Science/Environment

This project challenges students to monitor our planet from home by looking from above! It encourages students to look at pictures of Earth, describe them and think about how they might link to climate change. There is a starter guide that sets out some examples and useful videos that explain a little more about Earth observations and climate change.

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

Royal Astronomical Society| Online Space Classes: 4 - 16

Preschool: Alternate Wednesdays from 27 May @10.30am

Primary: Alternate Wednesdays @ 10am

Secondary: Alternate Tuesdays @ 4pm

https://ras.ac.uk/education-and-careers/lockdown-learning-online-space-classes-preschool-primary-and-secondary

The Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) is offering online interactive space sessions for preschool, primary and secondary aged students. Themes will rotate and vary on a monthly basis (so each class is repeated twice). You can sign up to sessions for free using Eventbrite, and you will be sent a Zoom link to participate. The primary and secondary sessions will be a 40 minute talk and 20 minutes of Q&A. The preschool sessions will be interactive, including role play, singing, learning about space and having fun! The recordings of previous sessions can be found on their YouTube channel

The National Space Centre| LIVE Space Q&A: 9+

Live Q&A Saturday 23 May, 11am - 12 noon

https://spacecentre.co.uk/event/live-space/

The National Space Centre will be talking to Dr Suzie Imber from the University of Leicester in a live Q&A session about the past, present and future of space. Ask your questions in advance on their LIVE Space Facebook event page or ask live on the day. Suzie Imber was the winner of BBC Two's Astronauts. Check out their YouTube channel as well for weekly videos.

The music of the stars: 14+

Online talk

https://www.york.ac.uk/news-and-events/events/public-lectures/summer-2020/music-stars/

The study of pulsations in stars allows us to probe the deep internal workings of a star and is the best known way to determine interior properties and dynamics. The vibrations are analagous to the vibrations in musical instruments and can tell us about the internal properties of a star. So, in a sense, each star has a unique musical 'voice'. This talk will share the modern science of pulsations, their analysis with different techniques and how new asteroseismic research is contributing to a revolution of understanding of stellar interiors. 

York Festival of Ideas: 5+

Online events, 2 June to 14 June

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/

With over 50 free events the York Festival of Ideas team have working with their partners to bring together a diverse programme of talks, music, activities and community trails (to explore on your daily exercise). World-class speakers will cover topics from How to Grow a Human with Phil Ball to a fascinating tour through the valley of the shadow of digital death with psychologist Elaine Kasket, while Tansy Hoskins will explain just what exactly your shoes are doing to the world.


Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 27th May 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: Yorkshire Attractions - Ages 5 - 11

https://yorkshireattractions.org/yorkshire-attractions-news/

Yorkshire Attractions is bringing you weekly ideas for activities themed around their attractions for you to be creative, learn and have lots of fun with, all without leaving the house. We will be highlighting their science week here but they also have other themed weeks on nature, story telling, puzzles and much more.

Ages 5-11: Science!

https://yorkshireattractions.org/stay-at-home-with-yorkshire-attractions-science/

Science/Hands on

This science newsletter contains five fun science activities to have a go at. Younger children will need to be supervised as water, scissors and balloons are involved. We recommend making the oobleck (cornflour and water) as the slime is fun to play with. You can also fill a balloon with it and make a fun stress ball.

Spotlight on: Fizzics Education - Ages 11 - 16

https://www.fizzicseducation.com.au/category/150-science-experiments/

Fizzics education is a fun website that has a list of 150 science experiments all designed to be performed at home in the kitchen. The experiments come with step by step instructions and a Why does this happen? section to explain what is happening.

Whilst most of the experiments use common household items, some experiments may ask for less common ones such as borax or dry ice. We do not recommend performing any such experiments that use chemicals you are not familiar with.

Ages 11 - 16: Make a lung model

https://www.fizzicseducation.com.au/150-science-experiments/human-body-science/make-a-lung-model/

Physics/Practical/Thinking Scientifically

A fun experiment that involves using an empty bottle of water, some balloons and a few other items you'll find around your home to create a lung model. A video shows what the outcome should be and the step by step instructions guide you through the setup. The Why does this happen section takes you through what the science behind the model is. 

Spotlight on: Institute of Arts and Ideas - 15+

https://iai.tv/education/education-at-the-iai

The Institute of Arts and Ideas (IAI) has set themselve the ambitious goal "to challenge the notion that our present accepted wisdom is the truth" and "to uncover the flaws and limitations in our current thinking". We are highlighting their physics course below but the IAI also produces a podcast called UniTalks that includes discussions on research and applying for University.

Ages 15+ : Physics Course

https://iai.tv/education/physics-course

Physics

The IAI have teamed up with the Ogden Trust to create the IAI Physics Course. Whilst not linked to the curriculum, the course's aim is to spark curiosity and to expose students to some of the big ideas and questions in physics. The link above will take you to a page that allows you to access a Google drive. The drive has a ZIP folder containing the six parts of the course. Whilst this course is intended to be teacher led, you will have access to the teacher and student notes for each part. Topics include the Structure of Reality and Space Exploration.

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

NASA and SpaceX Launch Astronauts to Space!: 5+

Wednesday 27 May, 9.33pm 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aymrnzianf0

Watch history unfold on Wednesday 27 May as NASA and SpaceX launch astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley to the International Space Station. Tune in starting at 5.15pm as NASA and SpaceX provide joint, live coverage from launch to arrival at the space station. 9.33pm is the target for the launch time of the SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft atop a Falcon 9 rocket from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The Crew Dragon is scheduled to dock to the space station at 4.29pm Thursday 28 May.

Tim Talks Space: 8+

 Monday 1 June, 11.30am

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLzlxFuBZQ27wq03BvynSRg

The UK Space Agency will be hosting a live talk with Astronaut Tim Peake and special guest Dr Anna Hogg from the School of Earth and Environment at the University of Leeds. The topic will be Our Planet from Space. Following the link above will take you to the UK Space Agency's YouTube page where you can also catch up on some previous installments of Tim Talks Space.

York Fesitval of Ideas| The Secret Science of Superheroes: 12+

Tuesday 9 June, 1pm to 2pm

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/calendar/science-superheroes/

One of many talks going on during the York Festival of Ideas,  Mark Lorch, editor of The Secret Science of Superheroes, looks at the underpinning chemistry, physics and biology needed for their superpowers.

Chemistry: A Volatile History: 14+

Tuesdays, 8pm

BBC 4

Professor Jim Al-Khalili, University of Surrey, presents the explosive story of chemistry and the building blocks that make up our entire world - the elements. In this three-part series, professor of theoretical physics Jim Al-Khalili traces the extraordinary story of how the elements were discovered and mapped.

Binding Blocks| Online Nuclear Masterclass: 15+

Starting Monday 22 June

https://www.york.ac.uk/physics/public-and-schools/secondary/nuclear-masterclass/

Join the Department of Physics at the University of York for a Nuclear Masterclass.  Find out more about cutting-edge research in Nuclear Physics and applications of nuclear technologies. This four-week programme is suitable for students studying Physics in years 11, 12 and 13 (S5 and S6 in Scotland) and has 3-5 hours of content per week including live webinars with leading experts weekly.

Intermediate Biology Olympiad: 16+

Monday 2 June - Monday 9 June

https://www.rsb.org.uk/get-involved/rsb-competitions/intermediate-biology-olympiad

Registration is now open for this year's Intermediate Biology Olympiad. The Intermediate Biology Olympiad challenges students’ biology knowledge and encourages them to continue studying the biosciences beyond school/college. The competition consists of a one-hour multiple choice test taken online at any time convenient during the competition dates. Students will need to be invigilated when taking the paper, either virtually by a teacher or at home by a parent/guardian. Questions will be set on topics students are likely to have covered at GCSE and in their first year of A level. The competition is open to students in, Y12 in England and Wales, Y13 in Northern Ireland, S5 in Scotland, and equivalent year groups worldwide.


Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 3rd June 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: STEM Learning - Ages 4-18

https://www.stem.org.uk/home-learning#curriculum-linked-resources

STEM Learning is usually a resource for teachers, but in the current crisis their amazing team of subject experts have put together a selection of activities and materials to use at home, all of which are completely free. They also offer guidance for parents and carers about home learing including a survival guide and online chat with subject experts (weekdays from 8:30 am to 4.30 pm).

They have recently started offering remotely-delivered, curriculum-linked science lessons for young people aged 5-19 accompanied by live Q&A sessions with subject experts. Lessons come with activity sheets which detail activities to try at home, links to related material and useful explanations.

We will highlight a few of the resources on offer below but there are many more to discover on their website. The website breaks down the resources into primary, secondary and post-16 and then by subject and year that it is targeted at.

Ages 4-6: Flying food

https://www.stem.org.uk/resources/elibrary/resource/133680/flying-fruit

Science/Environment/Food

Don't worry, this doesn't encourage food fights, but rather thinking about where our food comes from. Using a world map (a poster, puzzle or print out) and a bit of research, find out how far food comes to end up on our tables. There are worksheets for the children and teacher notes which come with where the activities link into the curriculum. This activity could be extended to the whole family with older children doing research on what impact food transport has on the environment. You could even try and make a dish with the smallest total travel time. 

Ages 7-11: Colour in the Earth

https://www.stem.org.uk/resources/elibrary/resource/319216/colour-earth

Geography/Space/Evironment

This activity uses pictures taken from space to teach children how to identify artificial and natural environments. Children will work on reading maps and keys/legends using simplified line drawings created from Tim’s photos. Children can also identify the different seasons from a series of four images of the British Isles. Included in the pack is a PowerPoint presentation, children’s worksheets and a teacher guide to support the running of the activities. You could extend the activity by encouraging children to think about and draw an aerial view of their home and surrounding area.

Ages 11-14: How can we live smarter

https://www.stem.org.uk/resources/elibrary/resource/464499/how-can-we-live-smarter

Design & Technology/Hands on

A collection of six acitivites that are designed as research projects exploring how we can use technology to improve the quality of our lives. The activity booklet includes a leader sheet and a students sheet with a suggested structure to the activity and extension ideas. We like the look of Smarten up your life activity, where students design a smart kitchen gadget to improve our lives and present in to a panel of 'experts'.

Ages 14-16: Plastic challenge

https://www.stem.org.uk/resources/elibrary/resource/35961/plastic-challenge

Science/Environment/Hands on

This challenge starts with a few activities for students to learn about different types of plastic, how they can be differentiated and recycled. The final activity is to use used plastic to make a new product. The student activity sheet gives structure to the design process and makes a few suggestions as well. This activity could be done by younger and older children as well. Teacher notes are also provided for whoever leads the activity.

Ages 16+: Go further: A practical guide to extended science projects

https://www.stem.org.uk/resources/elibrary/resource/420662/go-further-practical-guide-extended-science-projects

Science

Here, STEM Learning goes through how to how to do extended science projects and how to conduct them ethically. The ZIP files contains teacher and student guides on what ethical practice is, how to plan and conduct projects ethically, and the student activity also includes some written activities. Another file guides you through how you go about choosing a topic, planning a project and all the way through to writing up and presenting it.

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

York Fesitval of Ideas| Discovery Zone: 5+

Available throughout the Festival of Ideas

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/discovery-zone/

Step inside the virtual Discovery Zone and enjoy a range of fun, hands-on activities designed to spark the whole family’s imagination. The activities available cover a range of topics and each comes with a video and instructions. Why not have a go at making a Solar System with loo roll, or investigate the difference between Regular and Diet Coke

York Fesitval of Ideas| The World According to Physics: 14+

Thursday 11 June, 8pm to 9pm

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/calendar/world-physics/

Shining a light on the most profound insights revealed by modern physics, quantum physicist, bestselling author and broadcaster Jim Al-Khalili invites us all to understand what Physics tells us about the Universe and the nature of reality itself.

Join Jim as he introduces the fundamental concepts of space, time, energy, and matter, and describes the three pillars of modern physics: quantum theory, relativity, and thermodynamics. 

York Fesitval of Ideas| Syzygy Live: The mystery of dark matter: 14+

Friday 12 June, 8pm to 9pm

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/calendar/syzygy-live/

It’s a cosmic mystery! Up to 80 per cent of the Universe could be invisible ‘dark matter’ - but despite decades of scientific research, astronomers are still searching for clues. In this special live episode of the Syzygy podcast, York astronomer Emily Brunsden and her co-host Chris Stewart delve into the dark matter enigma with nuclear physicists Mikhail Bashkanov and Dan Watts. Mikhail and Dan are part of a team at the University of York that recently put forward a new candidate for the mysterious matter.


 

Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 10th June 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: Centre for Industry Education Collaboration (CIEC) - Ages 4-11

http://www.ciec.org.uk/industry-at-home.html

The CIEC's IndusTRY AT HOME experiments are designed for children aged 7+ to be able to perform independently. However, with adult supervision and a little more guidance, they can be good fun for younger children as well. Here's one of our favourites:

Ages 4-11: The Best Bubble

http://www.ciec.org.uk/pdfs/primary/Best%20Bubble%20-%20IndusTRY%20AT%20HOME.pdf

Hands on/Science

This is a fun activity that would be great for a sunny day outside! A 'Bubble Company' wants to design the biggest and longest lasting bubble possible and it's down to the children to investigate different bubble mixtures and bubble wands. The activity sheet has a kit list, a method and some suggested follow up investigations. It also provides a list of important words for children to understand and some questions to help guide the children as they plan the experiment. 

Spotlight on: Practical Action - Ages 11 - 16

https://practicalaction.org/schools/

Practical Action provides STEM challenges linked to the UK curriculum and designed to engage students with real world issues including climate change, renewable energy and food security. Some of the challenges are also designed for primary school children but more guidance may be needed in these cases. All the challenges come with a Teacher’s guide and separate Parent’s/Carer’s guide to running the challenge, as well as activity sheets, a PowerPoint, a poster and certificates for the children to receive upon completion of the activity.

Ages 11-16: Squashed Tomato Challenge

https://practicalaction.org/schools/squashed-tomato-challenge/

Design & Technology/Hands on

This activity challenges students to design, build and test a way of moving tomatoes that won’t squash them! Whilst being a slightly silly sounding brief, the activity is linked to a problem in Nepal, where farmers have to transport tomatoes and other foods to markets down very steep terain. Like all challenges, this one comes with a home learning guide and a student activity sheet, which begins with students indentifying the impact safe tomato transport can have on the lives of people living in Nepal.

Spotlight on: Royal Society of Chemistry - Ages 14+

https://edu.rsc.org/resources

The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) have a lot of resources available for Primary and Secondary students. We think that the resources for younger students still require some teacher input, so are focussing here on their resources that are suitable for GCSE and A level students (or equivalent). 

Ages 14+: PhET Simulations

https://edu.rsc.org/resources/collections/screen-experiments

Science/Remote/Hands on

These online simulations and practicals that are a good way for students to maintain their practical science skills. The practicals come with suggestions on how to perform the practical and background information. You will need to create a login to access these resources, but it is free to create and you can opt out of receiving any unwanted emails.

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

Tim Talks Space: 8+

Monday 15 June, 11.30am

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLzlxFuBZQ27wq03BvynSRg

The UK Space Agency will be hosting a live talk with Astronaut Tim Peake. Following the link above will take you to the UK Space Agency's YouTube page where you can also catch up on some previous installments of Tim Talks Space.

York Fesitval of Ideas| Discovery Zone: 5+

Available throughout the Festival of Ideas

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/discovery-zone/

Step inside the virtual Discovery Zone and enjoy a range of fun, hands-on activities designed to spark the whole family’s imagination. The activities available cover a range of topics and each comes with a video and instructions. Why not have a go at making a galaxy, or discover and investigate how scientists are able to look inside atoms.

York Fesitval of Ideas| The Secret Science of Superheroes: 12+

Saturday 13 June, 1.30pm to 2.30pm

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/calendar/between-worlds-space-sound/

Do you ever feel dizzy when you think about the incomprehensible scale of space? We call that feeling Cosmic Vertigo. Join composer Anna Phoebe, Senior Advisor for Science and Exploration at the European Space Agency (ESA), Mark McCaughrean, artist, alchemist and inventor Lauren Bowker, composer and producer Nitin Sawhney and poet and activist Salena Godden, as they explore how music, poetry and design can help us to experience the unfathomable.

Reminders

Don't forget about these upcoming live events:

York Fesitval of Ideas| The World According to Physics: 14+

Thursday 11 June, 8pm to 9pm

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/calendar/world-physics/

York Fesitval of Ideas| Syzygy Live: The mystery of dark matter: 14+

Friday 12 June, 8pm to 9pm

http://yorkfestivalofideas.com/2020-online/calendar/syzygy-live/

Binding Blocks| Online Nuclear Masterclass: 15+

Starting Monday 22 June

https://www.york.ac.uk/physics/public-and-schools/secondary/nuclear-masterclass/

Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 17th June 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: astroEDU - Ages 4+

https://astroedu.iau.org/en/

AstroEDU was created by the International Astronomical Society with the aim of making the best science activities, particularly those with an astronomical, earth or space science focus, accessible to educators around the world. Whilst some of the activities are meant for classrooms and might be difficult to adapt, there are plenty of activities for all ages to have a go at. 

Here are some of our favourites:

Ages 4-12: Meet our neighbours

https://astroedu.iau.org/en/collections/tactileastronomy/

Hands on/Science/Space

Meet our neighbours is part of astroEDU's Tactile Astronomy section that's accessible to visually impaired as well as non-visually impaired children. Using basic household materials, children explore the surfaces of the MoonEarth and Sun by using different textured materials to model the surface features. Each of the activities comes with a pdf of the surface features, learning objectives, background information and a detailed guide to the activity. 

Ages 12-16: Impact craters

https://astroedu.iau.org/en/activities/1641/impact-craters/

Science/Hands on/Space

This activity can be done largely independently as students investigate the effect meteor and meteorite impacts have on the Earth's surface and how the mass and impact speed effects the size of craters by dropping different sized objects (stones or rocks) into some sand or soil. There is a list of materials and background information and an activity sheet.

Ages 16+: Measure the Sun's Rotation Period

https://astroedu.iau.org/en/activities/1801/measure-the-suns-rotation-period/

Physics/Space/Modelling

Students use images of sun spots on the surface of the Sun to estimate the rotation period of the Sun. The acitivity provides images that can be printed off or there is a suggested method for doing it online with live images. There is background information and a guide to how perform the measurements.

Spotlight on: Royal Society of Chemistry - Ages 14+

https://edu.rsc.org/resources

The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) have a lot of resources available for Primary and Secondary students. We think that the resources for younger students still require some teacher input, so are focussing here on their resources that are suitable for GCSE and A level students (or equivalent). 

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

National Space Centre| Summer Science Festival: 6+

Monday 21 June, 10am - 5pm

https://spacecentre.co.uk/event/summersciencefestival/

The National Space Centre are putting on an entire day of videos, lessons, stories and blogs all about amazing places and people that inspire them. You can follow the day on YouTube and social media and learn more about it through the link above.

National STEM Learning Centre| STEM Clubs Week 2020: 6+

Monday 22 June - Friday 26 June

https://www.stem.org.uk/news-and-views/news/stem-clubs-week-2020

The National STEM Learning Centre is bringing a week of interactive challenges, case studies, webinars dedicated to the topic of sustainability. There is also a competition to design a city for lots of people to live in, but one that avoids damaging the planet as much as possible.

National Physical Laboratory| Space Rocket Challenges for 2020: 6+

Tuesday 16 June - Tuesday 30 June

https://www.npl.co.uk/space-rocket-challenges-2020

The National Physical Laboratory and the UK Space Agency have teamed up to present the Space Rocket Challenge! Every Tuesday for three weeks there will be a new challenge  for you to design your own space rocket, make a rocket at home and learn more about the UK’s space sector. You can find out more through the link above and the UK Space Agency's Twitter and Instagram feed.


Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Science at home newsletter: 24th June 2020

Science at Home

Hello,

Welcome to our Science at Home newsletter. We would love you to share your science at home activities -  tweet us @astrocampus or email physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Spotlight on: Chester Zoo - Ages 4 - 11

https://www.chesterzoo.org/schools/resources/

Chester Zoo have some excellent resources all about their animals and habitats. Their resource page is set out to allow you to find activities for different age groups, topics and activity type. You can also find lots of great videos on their YouTube channel.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZ9UagJLiMdBIFOHYwT7eLA

Here are some of our favourites:

Ages 4-11: Rainforest in a box

https://www.chesterzoo.org/schools/resources/rainforest-in-a-box/

Hands on/Science/Geography

Rainforests are incredible ecosystems that provide a habitat to an amazing number of animals and plants. The activity sheet takes you through how to make a rainforest in a box and examples of what types of animals you can find there - Chester Zoo have fact files on the different animals as well.

Spotlight on: Royal Academy of Engineering - Ages 11 - 18

http://stemresources.raeng.org.uk/resources/

The Royal Academy of Engineering have a collection of resources with clear curriculum links for higher primary to GCSE and post 16 resources. The resources come with introductions and guides for both leaders and students with all the necessary information in. The resources encourage investigations through hands on activities.

Ages 11-16: Power up!

http://stemresources.raeng.org.uk/resources/enrich-(1)/after-school-club-resources/powerup/

Hands on/Science/Energy

This activity can be done largely independently as students investigate energy, electricity generation and renewable energy sources through hands on activities. There is an introductory video and teacher and student guides as well. The student activity guide culminates with making a Rude Goldberg machine, a machine designed to perform a simple task in an indirect and overly complicated way, a bit like in Wallace and Gromit. If you make a Rude Goldberg machine we'd love to see it at work. You can tweet us @astrocampus with a video of your machine at work.

Ages 16+: Forces, centre of gravity, reactions and stability

http://stemresources.raeng.org.uk/resources/post-16/mechanical/forces-centre-gravity-reactions-stability/

Forces/Maths/Physics

In this activity you inverstigate tipping points of buses and boxes, before applying the concepts you learn to other examples, like wind surfing. As with many of the post 16 resources, this activity has a downloadable worksheet and online interactive elements. It breaks down what physics and maths areas are covered and then offers a problem statement, giving a real-world scenario for the questions and activity. 

Live events

During the current climate lots of talks, Q&As and interviews are moving online. In this section we will advertise events we feel are worth tuning in for.

FutureLearn| Exploring everyday chemistry: 16+

Monday 29 June, four week course

https://www.york.ac.uk/study/moocs/exploring-everyday-chemistry/

Run through FutureLearn, in partnership with the University of York, this course is particularly useful to students who are thinking of studying Chemistry at York or any university. 

'Exploring everyday chemistry' is a four week course, starting Monday 29 June, where you explore the organic chemistry behind perfume, medicine, brewing and sport.

National STEM Learning Centre| STEM Clubs Week 2020: 6+

Monday 22 June - Friday 26 June

https://www.stem.org.uk/news-and-views/news/stem-clubs-week-2020

The National STEM Learning Centre is bringing a week of interactive challenges, case studies, webinars dedicated to the topic of sustainability. There is also a competition to design a city for lots of people to live in, but one that avoids damaging the planet as much as possible.

FutureLearn| Creating the amazing: 16+

Monday 29 June, four week course

https://www.york.ac.uk/study/moocs/creating-the-amazing/

Run through FutureLearn, in partnership with the University of York, this course is particularly useful to students who are thinking of studying Engeering at York or any university. 

'Creating the amazing' is also a four week course beginning Monday 29 June, where you explore real-world applications of engineering and what skills and knowledge are needed. It offers a great insight into a subject that is not taught in schools.


Whilst we have made every effort to check these resources, please note that we do not own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk.

Best wishes,

The Physics Outreach team

Katherine, Lindsay and Phil

Other Resources

Disclaimer

Whilst we have made every effort to check external resources, please note that we don't own them and did not create them. If you have any comments or feedback, or want to suggest other resources, please get in touch at physics-outreach@york.ac.uk