Activity Details

The workshop includes a range of separate activities targeted at either Physics or Computer Science teachers, plus some common activities aimed at a general STEM audience. It will be led by Dr Alex Weddell, a Lecturer in the School of Electronics and Computer Science.

For Physics teachers:

  • ‘Photonics Explorer Kit’ hands-on activity. A kit and supporting materials, valued at approximately £150, will be provided free-of-charge to attendees!The Photonics Explorer activity is designed to equip teachers with a full class kit of experimental material and educational resources for teaching photonics, the science of light. The photonics kits are given freely to schools and paid for by industry, but only in conjunction with a teacher training course. This workshop and the teacher’s kits are sponsored by the EPSRC Future Photonics Hub based at the University of Southampton. The Photonics Explorer kit has been developed by an international team of teachers and experts from 11 EU Countries and has been tested with nearly 2,000 students in seven EU countries.The kit contains the following:
    • 10 sets of aluminium mirrors, colour filter sets and plastic lenses
    • 10 LED modules with red, green and blue LEDs
    • 10 eyesafe Lasers and 5 m polymer optical fibre
    • 10 diffraction gratings and 20 polarisers
    • 10 foils with slit and double slit for optical diffraction experiments

    This activity will be run by Pearl John, Public Engagement Leader in Physics and Astronomy. For more information about the Photonics Explorer Kit please visit the EYESTvzw website.

    Photo of red circuit board

    The “Music Mixer” circuit board

  • Music Mixer circuit board hands-on activity. Teaches core electronics concepts for A-level Physics students. One circuit board and supporting materials will be provided to each attendee, with the opportunity to apply for a free classroom set valued at over £300 (limited quantities available). The teaching tool is centred around a ‘Music Mixer’ circuit that combines two audio signals, for example music from their mobile phones, encouraging students to control the volume by experimenting with different electronic components, learning about electronic sensors (e.g. LDRs) and resistor dividers. The design exposes all components and demystifies electronics for the students. The board also has dedicated sections for determining Planck’s constant by measuring and plotting the voltage and current through four different-coloured LEDs, and experimenting with capacitor discharge.

    This activity will be run by Dr Daniel Spencer, a Lecturer in the School of Electronics and Computer Science, who also developed the board. For more information about the Music Mixer please visit the Music Mixer kit page.

  • Increasing the Variety of Activities in A-level Physics
    Trevor Plant of the IOP’s Stimulating Physics Network in conjunction with the Maths and Science Learning Centre will deliver a session entitled “Increasing the Variety of Activities in A-level Physics” and provide an update on the IOP.

Two teachers working at a computer

Computer Science activity at 2016 event

For Computer Science teachers:

  • Logic & Arithmetic circuit board hands-on activity. An experimental activity teaching the boolean algebra and digital logic parts of the A-level Computer Science syllabus. A full classroom kit with 15 circuit boards valued at over £500 and supporting materials will be made available free-of-charge to all attendees.

    This activity will be run by Dr Geoff Merrett, an Associate Professor and Director of Outreach for the School of Electronics and Computer Science. For more information about the Logic & Arithmetic Kit please visit the Logic & Arithmetic kit page.

  • Raspberry Pi based activities, focusing on Big Data & Functional Programming, and Interrupts. Supporting materials will be provided free-of-charge to attendees).

    This activity will be run by Dr Jon Hare, a Lecturer in the School of Electronics and Computer Science.

The programme will also include:

Group of teachers and a lecturer on a tour of nanofabrication lab

Nanofabrication centre tour at 2016 event

  • Opportunities to network and share best practice, including a `bring and show’ session during a lunch break.
  • A keynote lecture on applications of STEM in a University research environment, from one of our leading academics.
  • An interactive session on improving diversity in STEM, training on `People Like Me’ including a resource pack being provided free-of-charge.
  • An insight into University admissions “from our point of view”, by our admissions team.
  • Tours of our world-class research facilities, including our £100m nanofabrication centre and photonics labs.

Registration is currently open, but a very limited number of places remain:
A-level Computer Science teachers:
A-level Physics teachers:

Alternatively, UK-based A-level Physics teachers may attend a one-day training session focussing purely on the Music Mixer circuit boards:
Music Mixer one-day CPD training (Thursday 12 July):
Music Mixer one-day CPD training (Friday 13 July):

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