The Hawthorne’s School Quad
December 4, 2013
Lost for words
December 4, 2013

[lead]GCSE Science Live[/lead]

On the 25th November 2013, our science class went to GCSE Science Live in Manchester for the day to see a variety of scientists talk about their contributions to the thoughts and theories that we have now. The scientists that spoke to us were: Pscience 1rofessor Robert Winston, Professor Andrea Sella, Professor Jim Al-Khalili, Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock and Professor Bruce Hood.

My favourite talk of the day was Professor Andrea Sella’s talk about how a zebra got its stripes and how a beetroot had different layers. This was exciting because he showed us some chemical reactions to illustrate his theories.

I also enjoyed listening to the ideas of Professor Robert Winston because he explained how he has helped to contribute to IVF treatment for infertile women. This was interesting because he showed how the treatment works, and how we can modify embryos to eradicate disease from a family. He told us that you don’t have to be extremely smart to get anywhere in life. You just need to be determined.   By Jamie-Louise Price

On Monday, 25th November, Miss Hagan’s Year 11’s set 1 class had the chance of taking part in GCSE Science live sscience 2essions. We were lucky to hear 4 professors and a doctor talking to us about different parts of science, starting from space and ending in chemical reactions. Also at the very end, we had a chief examiner giving us a talk about examinations and he gave us  multiple tips for successful revision, which will most likely help us later on. All sessions were very interesting and gave us a lot of new knowledge, however my favourite session was by Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock. Maggie seemed to be a very simple woman, with a similar thinking as us, as she is planning to emigrate to Mars for her retirement, which is what a lot of youngsters would dream of. She was very enthusiastic and had a lot of interesting facts and ideas about the earth and other living planets. I would love to know if her plans  come true in the future… A very big thanks to Mrs Hagan for taking us on a very interesting trip!  By Justina Meskelyte


My favourite scientiscience 3st at the GCSE Science Live was Professor Bruce Hood because I found his talk the most interesting. He talked about the science of how the brain develops and grows as a person ages. His talk on the structure of the brain went onto neurons and how information is sent along the neurons by electrical signals, and how the brain is constantly changing was interesting because it explained how people learn and remember new information, and how the brain uses already existing information that it has to process information.

By Liam McNabb

For me Jim Al-Khalili’s lecture was by far the best and most interesting lecture of the entire event. He discussed whether it is possible to travel backwards and forwards in time and described how Albert Einstein’s special and general theories of relativity have given us an insight into whether this is possible. He used an example of someone travelling close to the speed of light for 1 year and then returning to earth would see that 100 years had passed even though only 1 year had passed for him. So therefore he had travelled 99 years into the future.

science 4This is understood by Einstein’s theory of relativity which describes how time acts strange when travelling close to the speed of light. He described how this had also been proven in the 1970’s when two highly accurate atomic clocks where set in sync with each other. Then one clock flew around the earth whilst the other stayed at ground level. Once the clocks where examined again, the clock that had flew around the earth was nanoseconds ahead of the other one, it was not a lot but it was proof. He also explained how high gravity disrupts space time more making time move slower. So in theory you could travel through time by visiting Jupiter. He also explained how travelling back in time may cause many paradoxes which are events that will be repeated over and over to make the initial time travel possible which makes scientists believe travelling back in time is impossible. Finally he explained the theory of wormholes, gateways to different parts of the universe. He explained how Einstein proved wormholes existed but questioned whether they existed. I learned the fundamentals of the theories of relativity and also how time travel is possible but at the moment is impossible.  By Callum Hall

Our Year 11 group had a lot of fun at GCSE Science Live. There were several scientists with great ambitions that told us about their findings and what is next in their careers in Science. The lectures included time travel, fertility, space travel and the brain- from scientists like Maggie Aderin-Pocock, Professor Lord Robert Winston and Jim Al-Khalili. I found Jim Al-Khalili’s lecture about time travel the best: he included things like Einstein’s theory of relativity and stars that will be useful for our exams. We also listened to a talk about what the examiners mark students on, so that we know what to write on certain questions. I think Science Live will definitely help my grade come the exam season, and will hopefully lead me to a better mark.        By Matthew Parry

On the 25th of November my set one science group made the trek into Manchester to listen to the UK’s top scientists talk about one of their chosen subjects. At first I was sceptical, sitting in a lecture hall and listening to scientist drone on didn’t sound the most appealing to me, but I was wrong!  The lectures we had were so interesting, with lots of slideshows and exciting things. My personal favourite scientist was Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock. She spoke to us about the ideas that scientists are now developing about our universe, and one day, she said we could live on Mars! I enjoyed all of the lectures especially Professor Lord Robert Winston’s lecture on fertility and treatment for infertility, he was really funny and everyone there found his lecture insightful. It was really helpful that the chief examiner for science also gave a talk; I’ve got so many more ideas about how to tackle exam questions, now that I know what the examiner wants! Overall it was an amazing day out with the science group and I had a fascinating time, I was really glad for the opportunity to be lectured by world famous scientists! Thank you Miss!  By Louise Cowling

I really enjoyed all of the talks we had from Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, Prof Bruce Hood, Prof Andrea Sella, Prof Robert Winston and Prof Jim Al-Khalili.  Everything they had to say was really interesting and I was surprised how much I really enjoyed the day. I had three favourite scientists though, Dr Maggie Adrein-Pocock, Professor Bruce Hood and Professor Robert Wintson.

Dr Maggie Adrein-Pocock works at Astrium Ltd in Portsmouth, and manages a range of projects making satellite sub-systems designed to monitor wind speeds and other variables in the Earth’s atmosphere. She talked about the possibilities of living on other planets within our solar system, and even outside of our galaxy and what the other planets do for us. Maggie was extremely enthusiastic and her talk can only really be described as ecstatic and I particularly enjoyed Maggie’s lecture because of this, and I really like the idea of being able to live away from earth and the history of life on other planets within our solar system.

Professor Bruce Hood is Professor of Development Psychology in Society in the School of Experimental brucePsychology at the University of Bristol. He gave a lecture on our brain, called The Mind Machine. In this lecture, Professor Hood took us on a whirlwind tour of our brains and revealed many reasons why it is one of the most astonishing structures in the known universe. I really liked Professor Bruce Hood’s lecture, even though it was a little bit mind-boggling. I really enjoyed hearing about how our brains develop and how our brains can play tricks on us, never really letting us know exactly what’s going on inside our heads.

My personal favourite scientist was Professor Robert Winston. He is a medical doctor and distinguished scientist, particularly in in the area of human fertility.  Professor Winston was a pioneer of IVF treatment, meaning I kind of owe my life to this man! I really enjoyed his lecture, mostly because of his ability to communicate in a really engaging way. He made me laugh quite a lot. After high school, I’m planning on becoming a midwife, so his lecture appealed to me quite a bit. I loved learning all about human fertilisation. He also discussed genetically modifying embryos to eradicate inherited diseases, which was really interesting. He assured everyone that you don’t have to be really clever to be a scientist, you just have to be passionate about what you do, and have a team of people behind you that are just as passionate as you are.  By Sophie Cowling

Space … is it the final frontier?

Science Live was a scientific event that showed students of GCSE age how exciting and varied a life of science can be. It also gave us tips to exam preparation and how curiosity is the only attribute needed to work in science.

Dr Aderin-Pocock was the first speaker in science live. She wanted to tell us about the wonders of our universe and the possibility of us either living on other planets or even encountering strange alien life forms in galaxies far, far away. Dr Aderin-Pocock explained to us the nature of her work, how she helps create telescopes to survey our galaxy. From these observations, scientists have found that it may be possible to one day live on Mars. In fact, there is a company already working on sending people up in the future!

Professor Bruce Hood’s lecture focused on the brain (The mind machine) and how it works.He especially focused on how it tricks us. Our brain often falls for simple illusions, yet the professor says “it is a 3lb lump of tissue that is more sophisticated than any machine we can build today”.

The science of fertility was the main feature of Professor Lord Robert Winston’s lecture. The ethical issues behind genetically modifying embryos to eliminate birth problems were an important topic that left an important impression on all of us.

Professor Jim Al-Khalili – Any fan of Doctor Who has daydreamed  about time travel, the ability to travel forwards or backwards in time, this is a concept that was long ago banished to the realm of science fiction. However, the professor explained that not only is time travel possible, it has already been accomplished! Have you ever thought of alternate realities existing? This is another theory that scientists have been discussing for quite a while. Even movies (for example Star trek 2009) believe that it is possible to travel through a wormhole into the past of an alternate dimension. This was my favourite  lecture as I love science fiction.     By Lauren Coady

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