Young scientists experience the shocks, thrills and spills of science at East Kent Science Jamboree

The event held at Discovery Park in Sandwich, Kent aimed to capture the minds of the young scientists of the future

Chemists from Peakdale Chemistry Services showed the children the different apparatus used for purification and encouraged them to take part in making their own sodium acetate towers to gain an understanding of crystallisation

More than 1,400 schoolchildren learned about science and how it affects their everyday lives at the East Kent Science Jamboree held at Discovery Park in Sandwich, Kent this month.

Sponsored by Pfizer and the Royal Society of Chemistry, with additional support from the University of Kent and tenant, Mylan, the event was designed to inspire junior school children so they are encouraged to study science during their secondary education.

Pupils from 49 schools got their hands dirty as they extracted their own samples of DNA from kiwi fruit using kitchen utensils during the Secret Code of Life activity.

As part of the Shocking Science demonstration, the children created a static electrical charge using balloons and friction, which was followed by a crackling ending with the Van der Graaf generator.

The children experience the wonders of dry ice with a demonstration of solid carbon dioxide

Youngsters also raced each other to make butter, demonstrating the chemical processes involved; experienced the wonders of dry ice with a demonstration of solid CO2 to make a ‘witches cauldron’ effect and got to make some ‘ooze’ – a mixture of cornflour and water – to help explore the physical properties of a suspension as both a solid and a liquid.

The loudest and most explosive part of the day was brought to life by John Coad, organiser of the Science Jamboree and the person behind the live demonstrations of some of the greatest experiments by some of the most famous scientists of our time – Archimedes, Galileo, Newton and Einstein.

Tommy Dolan, Pfizer Site Head at Discovery Park, Sandwich said: ‘Hopefully many of the children who enjoyed the event will be inspired not only to study sciences at secondary school and university but also to pursue scientific careers in the future.’

Maria Pack from the Royal Society of Chemistry said: ‘The event was packed full of science to capture the minds of the pupils attending. The looks of enquiry, amazement and sheer enjoyment on the pupils' faces confirmed to all how important it is to expose young people to well-presented science in their own community. The RSC Chemistry at Work programme has been running for more than 20 years and we were delighted to be working with John Coad to support this event for so many primary schoolchildren in Kent.’

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