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Course notes

Alexandra Hodgson, science co-ordinator at Badger Hill primary in York, gets industrialised

Course Children Challenging Industry.

Provider Primary Science Enhancement Programme (PSEP).

Venue British Sugar, York. Two days, April 2003.

Cost Free - sponsored by North Yorkshire Business Education Partnership.

How did you find out about it?

A mailing to the school.

Why go?

I try to encourage experimentation and investigation. This seemed a good way of working on practical projects.

What did it promise?

Ideas for incorporating industrial links into real-life science.

Did it deliver?

We had a range of speakers looking at connections with the national curriculum, ways of using equipment for experiments, and the questions children might ask.

Highs and lows The factory tour was fascinating. We saw all the processes we'd been learning about, and how we could make links to work in school. The noises, the smells; it was very evocative. But there was no internet access, so although we were told about the resources on the project website, we couldn't try them out there and then.

Message, motto or mantra Anything you want to teach can be done through practical sessions.

Best advice Use questioning techniques and thinking skills. We looked at prompts we could use to get children to think.

Has it made a difference?

I worked with Year 5 on a series of sessions followed by a visit with them to British Sugar. They really responded to the practicals, especially learning to use new equipment, and they all loved the smell of the factory.

If the wind's in the right direction we get the smell in the playground and they all start talking again about their visit.

Coming your way?

PSEP organises regional activities for participating schools. For more information contact Joy Parvin at the Chemical Industry Education Centre, tel: 01904 432523.

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