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Science workshops with the Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution

29 January 2018

The School of Biochemistry's Lisa Buddrus recently helped run two workshops with the Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution (BRLSI). Lisa describes her experiences:
 
"In the first microbiology workshop at BRLSI I had 16 Science Cadets (aged 11 to 13) join me for an introduction to microbiology. We explored what microbes are through a game of top trumps and a visit from a group of giant plush microbes. We also tested the power of yeast to blow up a balloon! In the microscopy corner, we had a look at live yeast cells and nematodes under the microscope. There were quite a lot of disgusted and fascinated faces as the worms wiggles across the microscope camera screen. In another experiment, we explored the importance of hand washing by using Glogel to simulate microbes spreading from person to person through shaking hands and making finger prints on nutrient agar plates. 
 
"In the second workshop, we continued to explore the power and spread of microbes. We examined the finger print plates from the first workshop and discovered a great variety of colonies of various shapes and colours. It also showed how important it is to wash and dry your hands properly. Staying on the health theme, we had a lot of fun experimenting with a "snot gun" and discovering how respiratory diseases spread especially through sneezing and coughing. We also learnt about antibiotics and the spread of antibiotic resistance. In another experiment, we built a biobattery powered by normal baking yeast! 
 
"At the end of both workshops, the students prepared short poster presentations on what they had learnt and found most fascinating. they even composed a song about hand hygiene. It was absolutely brilliant."

Further information

BRLSI organises a whole host of activities for kids aged 8 and up. Check it out here: https://brlsi.org/youthactivities

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