Science #S4S5 INSET day, Review.

Science S4S5 was held on Friday 10th February 2017 at RBSC in Bridgwater, Somerset. It was a county wide INSET day and was attended by around 150 Science teachers and senior leaders from Somerset. The twitter page for the network is here it is part of . The day had the twitter hashtags #S4S17 #Science


The event started well thanks to and his partner Kate who brought in these awesome cakes.

The programme for the day was jammed packed of workshops colleagues could attend and we also asked for each delegate to take part in the competition [details of the teaching and learning ideas collated from the competition can be found on this separate blog entry here]

The First keynote speaker of the day was from Professor Roy Sambles, Professor of Experimental Physics. Having been awarded the Faraday medal by the Institute of Physics in 2012 and as a member of the Royal Society his talk on ‘What is Light?’ was both thought provoking and entertaining for everyone. The feedback from this keynote throughout the day was excellent – he encouraged the Physics teachers to think and there was also something for the non-specialist teacher as well. (I must credit Bob Ayres with the first photo below

After the keynote by Prof Sambles colleagues then attended a choice of 3 workshops – a discussion with the exam boards AQA or Edexcel or a workshop delivered by myself. The  big question asked to AQA was regarding 1-9 grade boundaries but AQA still have not got them. My session on KS3 science also has a separate blog and the outcomes of workshop can be read here [KS3 Science – what are you doing?].

The was then split into various workshops which colleagues chose to attend (see programme above). During breaks colleagues attended the marketplace which was made up of companies and stalls offering education and science products.

Workshops included:

Brilliant chemistry demonstrations by Tim Harrison from Bristol University

Completing biology fieldwork by Anelma Roberts and

Use of dataloggers in physics lessons by Iain Davidson and

WOW and Magic in Science lessons by the amazing Dr Matt Pritchard

Doddle by and

Stretch and Challenge the high attaining by Heidi Foxford

Practical Physics by

Inspiring STEMerset by HoD

Beyond Einstein by , and Josh Doyle

Supporting the least able by Carys Hughes

AQA assessments for learning by Stella Paes

Other marketplace stalls of note include:

After an amazing lunch put on by the catering team we had an engaging talk by the ever brilliant Simon Singh . Simon had already spoken to at the Maths S4S event in their Morning keynote and then travelled across to the science event before attending a meeting in another corner of the county. Simon spoke about his book on the big bang which included how he made Katie Melua’s hit nine million bicycles more scientific.  After Simon we ran the tombola. Throughout the afternoon colleagues entered the tombola which was explained earlier in the blog and the results of which can be found here. Colleagues if they entered were drawn at random and could choose a prize which were kindly donated from various organisations: These included  selection of books donated by , Oxford science dictionary’s and , a course by, , some nice goodies donated by and 5 amazing classroom/lab visualizers donated by , and with thanks once again to Mr Bob Ayres who helped source these. All the ideas that colleagues wrote down can be found here.

After the tombola gave a wonderful presentation to all colleagues on the science of superheroes which was not only funny and entertaining but contained teaching and learning ideas that colleagues could use in the classroom.

As colleagues left the event it was really pleasing to hear so many say what a productive day they had and the evaluation forms were also as positive.

A few days after this email send to the head teacher at the host school confirmed that the event was successful.

A warm thank you and your team for hosting the outstanding S4S day at Robert Blake Science College.

 The day was a huge success with fantastic workshops, cleverly thought out and perfectly pitched for the audience. The college looked beautiful and staff hosted the event with great warmth and obvious pride.
Please might you pass on thanks from my  Science Department to your team. Everyone had obviously worked incredibly hard for the day and it was much appreciated by all who I spoke with, both from my own department and also from other academic establishments.
Kind regards,
All the T&L ideas, review from the KS3 session and  updates from some of the exam board speakers have now been sent to all colleagues that attended the event and further updates will be published on and on my personal twitter account

In future events I would like to focus more on:

Networking and setting up networks that will last, and the best practice of doing so

More quick pedagogy tips


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