Wellfield Middle's Cosmic Chronicle

Special Science Newsletter Edition: Celebrating BSW

Themed Learning Science Days

British Science Week was being celebrated around the UK on 11th-18th March and here at Wellfield we joined in too, with two whole days dedicated to the amazing world of Space and Science.

Many activities and visits were planned to ensure that all children received a wide range of enrichment opportunities and new learning experiences.

Read about what they did in this special science newsletter. Click here to see more photos and videos.

"My favourite part of Themed Learning was making a new friend and designing rockets." Jorge (Y5)

Cracking Cholera: From Quackery to Cure

Delivered by Newcastle University

One group put their potions into practice by joining Newcastle Medical School on an interactive investigation into the causes and cures of cholera in the past and present.

This whole day workshop combined the subjects of History and Science with unique access to Newcastle University's Special Collections and practical work in their science lab.

"My favourite part was going on the Cholera workshop and making cures." Samuel T (Y5)

Incredible machines

Delivered by ThinkPhysics, Northumbria University

In this workshop pupils explored machines, learning about simple mechanisms to help them shape the world around them.
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The STEM Design Challenge (Knex Workshop)

Delivered by Thermo Fisher Stem Ambassador, Ann Woolett and Mrs Murphy

We were very lucky to have Ann Woolet lead a fantastic workshop and donate Knex kits to school.

The workshop challenged children to use KNEX construction and building toys to build vehicles following instructions. There were competitions to see which vehicle travelled the fastest and the furthest.

The final challenge proved the most popular - pupils had to use their imagination to design a vehicle that would move without human intervention, only with the help of a sail or elastic band, while safely transporting a bouncy ball.

Mrs Murphy said it was lovely to see such creative imagination with this task, along with some great teamwork.

"The activities have been really fun, interactive and exciting. I particularly enjoyed building with Knex." (Y5)

Great North Museum Planetarium Visit

Two groups were lucky enough to spend the afternoon at the Great North Museum's planetarium.

One group viewed 'Dawn of the Space Age' - re-living the excitement of the early days of space exploration, from the launch of the first artificial satellite to the magnificent lunar landings and privately operated space flights.

The second group were immersed in the unexplained world of, 'Sea Monsters - A Prehistoric Adventure'. They learned about the fascinating science behind history’s grandest ocean creatures. It showed extraordinary marine reptiles of the dinosaur age brought to life.

The Great Marble Run

Delivered by Mrs Hawkridge

Resilience and teamwork was the order of the day when family groups were challenged with building a marble run in room 5. With only recycling and old packaging- along with about ten rolls of sellotape-children had to attempt to construct a sturdy 'rollercoaster' for their marble; the tricky part was to try to make it last 30 seconds.

Our best structure just missed the mark at twenty-two seconds (well done Patrick, Danielle, Jamie and Tia) and made extremely good use of bottle-necks to slow the marble's progress.

The children had to demonstrate the effects of weight, materials and structure on the speed at which a marble travels; they had to test out their predictions and alter structures accordingly.

Chemistry in Cooking

Delivered by Mrs Nicol

Review by Lucia Bodys
The thing I enjoyed most was the lesson that I had with Mrs Nicol when we made cinder toffee and ice cream. It was really cool to see the reaction that the cinder toffee made when we added the two teaspoons of bicarbonate of soda.

Electro-dough Circuits

Delivered by Miss Potts

Pupils made two types of play dough - one conducting and one insulating. They made simple circuits using LEDs and batteries. Finally, pupils were asked to make a model with a space theme incorporating these electrical components. There were some fantastic creations which included aliens, shooting stars and rockets. Well done!

"The key learning today was that salt is the golden ingredient for making play dough conduct electricity." Ella T(Y7)

"My favourite activities were making electro play-dough and making sport's body types because they were fun and I love play-dough!" Lee (Y5)

Lego Animation Workshops

Delivered by Miss McElderry

Using a fantastic app, ‘I Can Animate’, along with IMovie, children created their own animated short films using Lego and other toys. The children worked methodically to make their films as polished as possible, in the short time they had.

It was wonderful to see them work collaboratively and think about each frame , improving them through trial and error throughout the sessions.

You can see the animations created by our students, by clicking here.

I loved doing stop-motion animation with Miss McElderry because you could be very creative. I worked with Samuel T and made a Star War battle." Harrison (Y5)

Kerbal Space Program

Delivered by Miss Chambers and Mrs Stephenson

Our engineers and flight controllers built and launched rockets into space using the Kerbal Space Program. They were all extremely tenacious and creative. No two rockets were the same! Some launched with success and one rocket even managed to land on the moon!

This stimulating program captivated our young scientists and allowed them the opportunity to refine their space craft by looking at propulsion, weight and the symmetry of the spacecraft. Well done to all you budding astronauts!

"I really enjoyed the KSP game and getting to know Jorge. I would love to do this again happily." Daniel B(Y5)

5, 4, 3, 2, 1 Lift Off!

Delivered by Mrs Gordon, Mr Evans, Mrs Brown and Miss Barton

Miss Potts organised a fab staff training session, delivered by Mark Teale from IOP (Institute of Physics) about making and launching rockets. Staff from other schools even joined in with this workshop and each made their own rocket launcher and received a goodie bag.

All family groups took part in the Rocket Challenge and thoroughly enjoyed making, launching and improving their rocket designs.

"I had more fun than the pupils and now want to be a rocket scientist!" Mrs Gordon

"Themed Learning days were really fun. I especially liked making rockets in a team! I wish we had more than two days." Jake P (Y8)

Somatotypes - Sports Science

Delivered by Mr Burns and Mr Richardson

Success as an athlete comes from a combination of athletic ability and our body build. The three components of body build are type, size and composition.

Pupils learned about a system, developed by W.H. Sheldon, who used the terms ectomorph, endomorph, or mesomorph to describe the body build of an individual.

Mapping Constellations with Madame Oliver

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Delivered by Miss Davies

3D printing technology is becoming more and more affordable and opening up a whole range of opportunities, both good and bad.

In this activity, pupils watched a video from the 2014 Royal Institution Christmas Lectures to learn a bit about 3D printing, and then had to think about the impact that it could have on society.


Year 8 Science Ambassadors

Supervised by Mrs Nelson

Thanks to our fantastic Y8 Ambassadors who worked with children and parents from South Wellfield First School for their British Science Themed Week.

Mrs Nelson said the children were fantastic and interacted so well with the younger children, ensuring they took part. Great ambassadors for Science - great ambassadors for Wellfield!

The children were amazing and deserve high commendation. They were mature, helpful, polite and without them the events could not have taken place so thank you. Thank you also to the lovely teacher who came with them. We had parent feedback forms for our visiting parents and a MASSIVE number of parents commented on the behaviour, helpfulness and excellent communication of your pupils. They were a big hit! We loved having them here to help and everyone here is so appreciative. Mrs E. Given, Head of Science, SWFS


I enjoyed most of the themed learning activities as they were pretty fun. I especially enjoyed going to the Hancock Museum when we were in the planetarium when we learnt the history of the rockets.

But learning about the three types of body shapes was interesting as we researched different people who had those different body types.

On Tuesday making the rockets was fun and setting them off afterwards.

Callum (Year 7)

"I don't think these activities could be improved."

I had a really good time the past two days with the Themed Learning. Science was a really good theme for learning this year! The activities I did are listed below:

  • Rockets
  • Animation
  • Cholera Workshop

I enjoyed doing the animation with Miss McElderry. I had so much fun. I made a supercar race then there was a huge crash involving the two cars.

I also enjoyed making the rockets with Mr Brown. Mine and Eve's (8SR) rocket went second in the second round by going as close to Joshua's and Jessica's rocket.

The “Cracking Cholera” workshop was really fun because me and my group did things that was really interesting. I also made a tincture called “ Awesome boys, awesome cure!” We also looked through the microscope and saw different bacteria to do with cholera!

Joe F (Year 8)

Science Week Review~ By Eve Y (Year 8)

Monday~On the first day of themed learning my group made a rocket and launched them. Our rocket was 2nd in the distance and we worked in pairs. We changed one factor and that was the fins (size, quantity etc). I recommend this activity as it was very fun and creative.

In the afternoon, we made movie animations using the IPads. We used software called ‘I Can Animate’. We took several shots of Lego characters to create a short film/clip. I also recommend this activity as it was very effective.

Tuesday~Today our group went on a trip to Newcastle University Medical School. In the morning we played games based around Cholera and looked at archives from their special collection. We planned out which ingredients we would put in our Cholera cure and later on in the day we made them. In the afternoon, we were in the lab looking through microscopes at cells and how the substances affected the cells. It was an interesting trip and it gave us a chance to find out what Newcastle University was like.

Wednesday~Even though our themed learning had ended I was chosen to go to the first school and help the Year 3’s. I worked with Annabel and we did 2 different activities. It was nice to go to the first school because I went there before I came here.

Overall, themed learning was really good and made a change to normal lessons.

"I enjoyed all of it!" Ellie (Y8)

On the first day we were with Madame Oliver and we made stars on a big piece of blue paper in chalk, then in gold or silver stars. The chalk was to join up the stars to make a shape.

The second lesson was with Mrs Chambers and we made rockets on the computer then did the stroop test and made a little alien.

On day two I had Miss Barton and we made rockets then fired them in the air, then we improved them to make them fly better.

On the afternoon we had Mrs Davies and we were making models that we would like made from a 3D printer.

"I thoroughly enjoy science on a day-to-day basis." Molly (Y8)

On Monday morning I went to the first school to help the year 2’s with their science workshops. Me and Lola helped the children shake the jar filled with double cream until it turned to butter, then they were able to test their butter on some crackers.

In the afternoon we made animated films with Lego, based around science.

On Tuesday I went to Newcastle University and took part in a workshop called curing Cholera. We were in the university's library for the morning looking at historic items.

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Watch a clip of 5HM's Class assembly during Science Week on the link below.


Mark Teale, IOP (Institute of Physics)

Ann Woolet, Thermo Fisher Stem ambassador

Andy Gray, Whitley Bay High School

ThinkPhysics, Northumbria University

Newcastle University Stem Outreach

To all staff involved in making the days exciting, interactive and fun...and run smoothly.

Special thanks to Miss McElderry and Miss Potts for organising visitors, trips, timetables and the general oversight of the days.