Inquisitive aliens, sleuthing pupils and marsh-dwelling wildlife have all been used in science lessons shortlisted for the new Rolls Royce award for innovative science teaching. The award, backed by The TES, has announced nine finalist schools, which will each receive pound;5,000. These include Fleming Fulton comprehensive, in Belfast, which taught earth and life sciences through a DVD depicting an alien coming to earth. Other schools developed crime-scene role-plays to study chemistry, and designed a wildlife pond for school grounds. Finalists will compete for a pound;15,000 prize.