British Science Week is the annual national celebration of all things scientific and celebrate we certainly did. Walking into chapel on Monday morning, the girls were greeted by music from two of their Physics teachers, Mrs Kingsland and Miss Vega.
The room quietened and the girls were very surprised as a bagpiper, in full regalia, piped in Mrs Harrison and Mr Rothwell before providing the accompaniment to the hymn. What was this all about? The theme for BSW17 was 'Change' and we had chosen to spend chapel exploring sound; what it is and how different musical instruments, including our voice box, generate sound. Sounds were visualised first on a virtual CRO but then, and much more fun, on the rubens tube. This device has 100 tiny flames coming off a 2m stretch of pipe and when you pass sound through the tube the flames form the shape of the waves. We used the rubens tube to show sounds at different pitch and amplitude and then watched the flames dance along to Ice Ice Baby. The girls were shown how different instruments produce sound and the bagpipes were used to show how the lungs blow air over vibrating cords. At the end of chapel the school were piped off to their lessons. It was a loud and fun start to the week.
Other events during the week included: a fabulous lecture by Professor Alice Roberts; a lecture for primary schools on The Taste of Chemistry; an evening of Astronomy; Brain Day with a neuroscientist; a dinner with some engineers from Dyson; workshops exploring the interface of science and art through photography and culminated in our second annual Great Biology (Science) Bake Off, judged by our resident Mary and Paul. Over the week, the caterpillars on our webcam for Metamorphosis Live have been busy too and turned into chrysalises – hopefully they will hatch before the holidays start! (Parents and girls can keep on eye on this on our live webcam by clicking here).
Over the course of the week, over 700 people in the St Mary’s, St Margaret’s and wider Calne community have been involved in an event at the school. The science team would like to thank everyone involved and are already busily planning for BSW18!