You might remember that last year we celebrated the news of our funding success from The Royal Society, which has enabled us to create new learning resources. The resources will highlight the stories of science from our local heritage, linking the science and history of Dacorum together for the first time.
For those who don’t know, our new loan boxes will contain a film, which will centre around the theme of ‘The science behind…’ The first resource will be on ‘The science behind fireworks’ and the second will explore ‘The science behind photography’. Of course, these resources will highlight our heritage links to Brocks Fireworks and Kodak.
Since our last newsletter, a great deal has happened in the development of this project and we are excited to share what we’ve achieved so far.
After our call out to schools in Dacorum, five schools signed up to trial our new resource. This was wonderful news as it meant our resources were put into practical use and that the teachers could advise us on how to make the resources as effective as possible. Volunteers Anne and Margaret helped with this process, by devising questions for teacher feedback right from the start. The first set of questions have been completed and these covered questions about museum resources in general and access needs. Once we have finished creating the boxes and they have been trialled at the schools, our volunteers will visit the schools again to find out how they were used, what we could change and hopefully how excited the pupils now feel about science and history.
We recruited a scientist, Dr Sarah Bearchell, who wrote a script and prepped our experiments.
Then over the half term break, with a risk assessment written and a fire extinguisher close to hand, we got to work filming our experiments.
In the film some of the experiments we’ve shown include using a stomp rocket to demonstrate how a rocket uses thrust to go up. We showed how fireworks create colour by using chemicals like strontium, copper and sodium, and we have also explained how we use light to capture an image on negatives.
In the coming months, we look forward to sharing our new resources with our partner schools, and then subsequently to schools across the borough in the new school year.