Explosive fun during Pre-Prep Science Week

Pocklington Pre-Prep girl doing science experiment

Younger Prep School children had a blast during this term’s Science Week when they took inspiration from Bonfire Night to create exciting explosions and colourful potions.

Pre Prep School parents were invited in to join their children for Science Night, when they made magical milk, a firework in a bottle, lava lamps and straw rockets. Children also considered and tested scientific processes while learning how to collaborate, communicate and persevere.

Reception children used a Quiver app, which combines physical colouring with reality technology, to bring a volcano to life and help them understand the eruption process. They then used the Joy Doodle app to create firework displays on black paper and think about words to describe them.

They used the stomp rocket, slap rocket and film canister explosions to help them understand that a rocket needs a push to make it go upwards and that gravity brings things back down to earth.

Year 1 had their first attempt at creating elephants’ toothpaste using hydrogen peroxide, adding yeast to create a catalyst and watching the reaction. The explosion was not as large as expected so they changed the quantities and chemicals to achieve a much larger reaction, which they loved.

The children listened to the story of Goodnight Spaceman and then created their own chosen planet using papier-maché and paint. They held balloon rocket races, learning that the amount of air in the balloon has an impact on the distance it will travel. Class 1x also made rockets to take home.

Year 1’s Science Week ended on an explosive note when they mixed Alka Seltzer with paint to create outdoor paint bombs. The children loved watching to see which canister would explode next, an unpredictable process which created much excitement.Pocklington Pre-Prep children with home made rockets

Year 2 children created rockets at home in preparation for an experiment find out how far our rockets can go and what affects their flight. They considered what makes a good experiment, a fair test, any variables, as well as predicting what may happen and how to collect the results to make a conclusion. An online experiment with spinners demonstrated how air resistance works - and luckily they saw real life examples of this at play time as gliders launched from the nearby Wolds Gliding Club. They also revisited the Prep School’s launch of Major William Wilberforce, the space bear seen in this 2016 clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ott8ie_Tqrc

Mrs Bell invited Year 2 to the Senior School Lab to have a George’s Marvellous Medicine afternoon of potions and explosions. Sixth Formers and teaching assistants helped them make their own versions of George’s Marvellous Medicine, then they made coloured rain and conducted swirling colour experiments before feeding the medicine to Grandma - who expanded before shrinking again! Year 2 also created bridges from different materials to work out the strongest materials and shapes to use in their designs, linking to their learning theme of Weird and Wacky.

Comments included:  

Clark: “I liked it when we poured the milk in and when the colours moved away when we dipped our fingers in the shampoo. I really enjoyed it!”

Oscar: “I couldn't explain how we did it! I liked it all.”

Suzi: “I liked the colours on the shaving foam and they sank to the bottom and went dark.”

Evie: “I liked how the liquid exploded and changed colour.”

Evelyn: “It was good when we made Grandma explode and then shrink.”

Year Two class teacher Romney Walton said: “It is important to promote scientific thinking through Science Week, to help children develop key life skills which include an ability to communicate, to be able to focus and organise themselves. They are encouraged to form their own opinions based on their observations by developing the use of their senses and general awareness of the world around them.”

For a Flickr album of photos from the week click here.