Kent Science Resource Centre
Schools Activities in Kent Science Resource Centre
KSRC is equipped with two teaching laboratories that can each hold twenty students. We have a diverse range of biological and chemical equipment and reagents, and are able to offer enrichment activities or curriculum related activities to suit school needs.
Example activities we have run are:
DNA / CSI days – students use electrophoresis to separate DNA into bands to distinguish which suspect was at the crime scene. They can also extract their own DNA to take home.
Drug Discovery Workshop
This is a microbiology workshop where students handle Streptomycete bacteria and use some basic microbiological techniques. It mimics a process used in industry to screen bacteria for antibiotic production and show antibacterial activity against another possibly disease causing organism.
Please note that schools can apply for funding to support this and other Microbiology work through the Society for General Microbiology, Microbiology in Schools Fund which can provide funding of up to £1000 for Microbiological activities. Please click here to apply. To apply for this grant, schools need to have schools corporate membership which currently costs £10. Click here for an application form.
Students use Mung Beans to isolate and assay the enzyme alkaline phosphatase. They use techniques in cell disruption, centrifugation and spectrophotometry. We can look at activity at a number of different temperatures and pHs and students generate data that they can take back to school for further analysis. This experiment fits well with both the A level and BTEC science syllabus.
Students are able to use paper, thin layer, and size exclusion chromatography using simple apparatus to demonstrate the principle of chromatographic separation of mixtures. We also have gas chromatographs and high performance liquid chromatography systems that can be demonstrated or which students can use.
Health and Safety Workshop
The Kent Science Resource Centre laboratories are set up to industry standards with health and safety signage, personal protective equipment, three types of fire extinguisher, emergency showers and a chemical store etc. Students are able to carry out a quiz to find signs, identify them and explain the reasons they are there. This can be linked to a simple scientific experiment where students write their own risk assessment if required.
These workshops can be tailored to fit with GCSE, A level and BTEC curriculum needs.
Triple Science Network
Julie Coleman is the network leader for schools in the area. Our remit is to offer support to schools to increase uptake of triple science by students who will benefit. This will include support for schools who already offer triple science and schools who do not but plan to offer it in the future. More information can be found on the Triple Science website or by contacting Julie on 01795 599588.
We will be offering CPD in collaboration with local experts and in partnership with the Science Learning Centre South East.
Edexel Level 3 Extended Project
We are able to offer support to schools offering the Extended Project A level, particularly to those students who wish to do hands on, experimental laboratory work. We can help with choosing a topic and with experimental design so that students will be able to generate accurate and reliable data using modern equipment unlikely to be found in schools.
Teacher and Technician Continuing Professional Development
We run a number of courses for teachers and technicians in collaboration with the Science Learning Centres, Royal Society of Chemistry, CLEAPSS and the University of Kent. Please see our events calendar for courses coming up in the near future. If there are areas of CPD where no courses are currently available locally please contact Julie Coleman at KSRC and I will do my best to organise delivery to suit local needs.
We can run bespoke courses to demonstrate the equipment at KSRC to teachers and technicians. These staff will then be able to use the resource centre to deliver their own lessons without the expense of paying for an additional tutor.
The Kent Science Resource Centre is located on Kent Science Park where there are around 40 bioscience companies ranging from start up companies to large employers. While it is not often possible to arrange tours of companies, we have in the past invited industry speakers to talk to students on schools visits to KSRC, and while we cannot promise that industry will repeat these activities, we are very happy to act as liaison to try to set up this collaboration.
In addition, the staff and tutors used in KSRC have experience of working in both industry and academia and can offer informal careers guidance and information to students. We are always willing to answer student questions.
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