University's chemistry challenge

18 May 2005

University's chemistry challenge

60 students from 15 schools across the West Midlands enjoyed a fun-filled day of chemistry at Aston University on 18 May. The Salters' Festival of Chemistry gave participants the chance to find out more about chemistry though a variety of fun activities. Each school was represented by a team of four, 11-13 year olds.

During the morning the teams took part in a competitive, hands-on, practical activity, Saltys Challengein which they used their analytical chemistry skills.� In the afternoon, they competed in the University Challenge, a practical activity chosen by Aston, in which they were required to learn about the science of dyeing fibres and fabrics.� This was followed by a fun lecture given by Aston academic by Dr Yvonne Perrie, involving the science of bubbles.

The day ended with a prizegiving at which the winning teams were awarded cash prizes for their schools and all participants were given individual fun prizes and participation certificates.

The Salters' Festivals of Chemistry are an initiative of The Salters' Institute, whose aim is to promote the appreciation of chemistry and related sciences among the young. The Festival at Aston was one of a series of forty-eight which are taking place at universities throughout the UK and Ireland between March and June 2005.

The Institute is is working in partnership with the Royal Society of Chemistry for the Festivals this year.


For further press information please contact Sally Hoban on 0121 204 4552.

Notes to editors:

1. The Festivals are one-day events for schools held at Universities throughout the UK and Ireland.� The first series of Festivals was held in 1991.� Festivals were then held in 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998 and 2000.� Since 2000 Festivals have been held every year.� In 2004 there will be a series of forty-eight Festivals between March and June.� The aim of the Festivals is to make chemistry more exciting, more relevant and fun to students aged 11 to 13 years and to encourage schools to set up their own chemistry clubs.

2. Competing schools are represented by a team of four students from years 7 or 8 (or equivalent in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland). Cash prizes for the winning schools totalling �350 are awarded at each Festival and all participants receive fun prizes and certificates.�� During the last four years over 7,000 students have experienced the fun of practical chemistry through the Salters' Festivals of Chemistry.

3. Since 1991 sponsorship in support of the Festivals has been raised from over one hundred companies. Many of the Festivals are also sponsored by local companies.

4. The SaltersCompany is one of the Great Twelve City of London Livery Companies and was founded in 1394 for the medieval trade in salt.� The Company's activities today are centred on charitable and educational giving.� The Salters' Institute, established in 1918, and now the Flagship Charity of the Salters' activities, aims to promote the appreciation of chemistry and related sciences among the young and to encourage careers in the teaching of chemistry and in the UK chemical and allied industries.

5. The Institute's three core activities are the Salters Chemistry Club and Salters' Festivals of Chemistry for 11 to 14 year olds; Salters' Chemistry Camps for those aged 15, in partnership with other scientific institutions, and Curriculum Development, undertaken at The University of York, including Salters GCSE Science and Twenty First Century Science and Salters Advanced Chemistry, Salters Horners Advanced Physics and Salters-Nuffield Advanced Biology.

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