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Danger: shock tactics!

London's Science Museum has launched a national education project - "Danger! High Voltage" - at Harlaw Academy in Aberdeen as part of its work to enthuse students about science.

Pupils took part in a science show featuring high-voltage lightning flashes and were invited to conduct electricity through the palm of their hand. The finale saw a caged mobile phone zapped with a million volts.

The programme is based on the museum's flagship interactive gallery, Launchpad. The outreach team hopes to reach 8,000 S1 pupils in Scotland, north-west England and London over the next three years.

The first visit will comprise a science show about electricity and magnetism, followed by two classroom sessions: the first encourages pupils to perform exciting science demonstrations aimed at building confidence and skills; the second sets the challenge of building a moving contraption from a range of materials to create a chain reaction of events.

Schools will be given a Launch Box kit of materials, activities and ideas to inspire them in science. The project will culminate with pupils performing science tricks and demonstrations to peers and others.

For more on the Launchpad programme: www.sciencemuseum.org.uklaunchpadoutreach. The museum has also developed resources for teachers. For details: www.sciencemuseum.org.uklaunchpadeducators.

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