Science - The parents went pop

9th November 2012 at 00:00

What it's all about

The general consensus was that Ryan started it - and while there was only anecdotal evidence to support this, Sam's mum had no doubts. Ryan was bullying her son and something needed to be done, writes Steve Eddison.

Sam's mum brought Sam's dad with her. This was the first time they had spoken to each other in six months. The miracle of Ryan's dad being there was an even better omen. He was 13 the last time he had been to school of his own free will.

That's when I had the light-bulb moment. "What about a Lads and Dads Club? If you dads brought your boys to our club, you could show them how to interact positively with each other in an environment that demands cooperation and team work." I could even squeeze some science into the equation.

Lads and Dads Club was making balloon-powered racing cars and it wasn't long before the two men, and their boys, were busily engaged with each other, offering design advice and jointly constructing axle assemblies.

By the time the cars were lined up some friendly rivalry was evident. By the time the race got under way, the pit crews were revved up to screaming point. When the chequered flag came down, all hell broke loose.

The general view is that while Ryan's dad's car was first over the line, it was Sam's dad who threw the first punch.

What else?

Inspire pupils to make their own balloon-powered car with an instructional video from Steve Spangler Science, bit.lyBalloonCar. Set up your own science club, check out TESGA's case study of a school STEM club, bit.lystemClub.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today