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History Heroes’ Science Workshops

26th February 2015

History Heroes recently had a fantastic time, rolling out science workshops at Ropley C of E Primary School to years 3 – 6. The children were receptive, engaged and fantastic.

History Heroes science workshops

The children came to the workshops with a range of knowledge of famous scientists – some shouted out an impressive range of names right from the start: Darwin, Einstein, Pasteur, Curie, Fleming, even Herschel, who was the only scientist they mentioned, who wasn’t in History Heroes’ Scientists game – he was on our long list though, of course! Others began the workshops shyer and less confident about their knowledge of our most significant scientists and their work, but they were soon shouting out facts and names as loud and proud as anyone else.

We used History Heroes’ Scientists card game to employ a variety of games and approaches to enable the children to learn and discuss more about the scientists and their science.History Heroes Scientists card gamesWe ran straightforward quizzes, where the first child to recognise a scientist from their image stood up and read out that scientist’s card to the class. Then we raised the stakes and started reading out any fact from any random card, such as, “I revealed the moon was not smooth but a sphere with mountains and craters”. Within seconds children were jumping up shouting ‘Galileo’ while waving his card.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We encouraged the children to work in teams to use the Scientists’ cards to discover scientific themes and create timelines, which they then presented to the class. They worked together to choose individual scientists, whose work and life they acted out for the rest of the class to guess who it might be. It will be a long time before we forget the uproarious vignette acted out of Archimedes jumping out of his bath, shouting, ‘Eureka’, while the presumed lady of the house covered the eyes of her shocked children. As one of the children said of what they learnt that day, “I learnt that a man shouted eureka when he discovered something in the bath”

In fact it seems the children learnt a lot that day and what is fantastic is that they clearly absorbed quite detailed facts and challenging concepts about science and scientists. Some of their feedback revealed, ” I learnt that we were once apes”; “I learnt about the atom bomb”; “We learnt about space”; “I learnt that Einstein was famous for the equation E=MC2”; “I learnt that penicillin was made by bacteria and mould left in a petri dish”; “I learnt that some scientists dedicate their lives to their work and sometimes discoveries happen by accident”;” I learnt that in the olden days being a scientist was hard because if they thought it wasn’t true they would banish you or you could go to prison” and one of our favourite comments and definitely a vital lesson learnt, ” I learnt that Louis Pasteur didn’t invent pasta!”

The children also gave us tremendous feedback on how they enjoyed their workshops – here are a few snippets: “We liked the History Heroes cards because they are really interesting and because we learnt something from each of them”; “I liked the illustrations and they give you lots of information”; “we used our ears, eyes, history skills and our brains and we worked in teams with people I don’t usually work with”; We all had to contribute and we had to have fast reactions and good memories”; “I liked the fun facts and cartoons but it was fun while I was learning loads” . Here at History Heroes HQ we don’t like to boast (much) but we loved these comments too: “We thought the scientist workshop was brilliant!”; “I would recommend it because it was really great and awesome!” and a great one to finish on: “I thought it was one of the best things that has happened in the whole year!”

History Heroes science workshop