Win by Working Scientifically

How to develop the scientific skill set and win fantastic prizes for the science department

Overcoming the misconceptions and reservations many students have about studying science can be a challenge.  In fact, the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) still indicates a significant STEM skills deficit in the UK.

To make a real difference, students need to be fully engaged in a hands-on project they see as relevant.  One in which they are actively solving problems.  One in which they develop a sense of personal achievement.

The Real STEM Competition is designed to achieve this for up to 72 pupils in a day and is delivered on the school site – so there is no travel required.  Six teams of six pupils compete in a double lesson session that is repeated for a different group after break or lunch – minimalising disruption to the timetable.

A specialist team run the event and as the lead presenter is a hugely experienced science teacher there is no need for school staff to be present – allowing class teachers to supervise other lessons, effectively saving the cost of a cover teacher for the day.  Of course, teachers can always choose to observe their students compete and then apply the proven strategies to future lessons.

‘Space Pioneers’ is the exciting theme for this year’s competition – which reinforces and expands upon KS3 & KS4 curriculum content within a thrilling scenario of the mission to Mars.

Every competitor will build advanced electronic sensors, using semiconductor components, to represent features of a Mars Lander.  Then they will conduct redox reactions using microchemistry (the reduction of Copper Oxide with Hydrogen) to represent the analysis surface materials in areas of scientific interest around the landing site.

Most importantly, students will develop a wide range skills specified by the Working Scientifically criteria.  They will do so as part of a team, against tight deadlines and in a game-like context – which not only makes the experience relevant and challenging but maximises engagement.

Schools entering the competition will receive performance reports for every participant and a free copy of the Caving Conundrum activity, which applies the approach to the marble chip investigation.

Every participant will receive a certificate of achievement listing the skills developed and members of the winning team will be awarded a commemorative medal.  If the highest score is one of the top scores by Science Week 2018 the school can win a full-day workshop each term for a year, a further Double STEM Workshop or STEM Box 1 – full of fabulous activities to run with multiple classes.

The competition is a superb addition to upcoming activity weeks, holiday schools and transition days.  For further information or to enter your school – you can visit the website, email or call 01603 520866.

The Social School Award

Does your school use social media to connect, promote and engage with parents, the wider community and the global community?

If the answer to any of these activities is ‘yes’ then your school might qualify to go for the new Social School Award which launched last week at the Lancashire Association of School Business Managers conference.

Benefits to your school include

  • recognition, prestige and celebration for its innovative communication and engagement work in reaching out to the community and world using social media in different ways
  • being part of a realistic assessment process, designed by school social media education specialists, designed to challenge and help your school to do even better
  • being given examples of good practice from a range of school settings
  • the opportunity to get connected with other like-minded schools
  • receiving the Social School Award plaque, website graphics and press release.

To get started and find out if your school could qualify to apply follow the quick 5 step self-evaluation process at

Our contact details are available on the website but you can also email us via or call 01772 657 100 .

Thanks in advance,

The Social School Award Team

Connect • Promote • Engage

Free Textbooks for the new A and AS Mathematics Syllabuses

Send for a FREE copy of each of the new Aiming High Books for A & AS Level Mathematics

The Aiming High Mathematics textbooks for C1&C2, C3&C4, M1, M2, M3&4 have been very popular with both mathematics teachers and students and have contributed to excellent exam results.

Four new textbooks have been produced for the new A- and AS- Mathematics syllabuses, based on the textbooks listed above:

PURE MATHEMATICS BOOK 1   – Topics 1-13   (An A-Level Mathematics Course)

PURE MATHEMATICS BOOK 2  –  Topics 11-20 (An A-Level Mathematics Course)

PURE MATHEMATICS BOOK 3  –  (An AS-Level Mathematics Course)

MECHANICS                                      –   (both AS- and A-Level Mathematics Courses)

The MECHANICS book has an unusual structure:
Topics 1-6 are for both AS-Level and A-Level students.
Topics 7-10 are just for A-Level students.
It took many weeks to get this structure right, but the result was well worth the effort.

Each head of sixth form is invited to send for a FREE COPY of each of these texts.
Just email me
at or ring me on 01428 717113

What can you do with these free texts?
You have my permission to use the material in these texts to supplement any other A-Level Maths texts that you are using, within your school only.  You can print off parts of these texts for your students use.
OR – you could purchase more of these texts for use with your students. A price list will be sent with the free textbooks.

Some information about Aiming High texts:

The original Aiming High A-Level texts were developed in the classroom with the enthusiastic aid of my students. Teachers’ can decide what they wish to teach but all the information students’ need is embedded in the text.  So, students who miss lessons, for whatever reason, do not miss any theory. All students, whatever their ability, are motivated to achieve the best grades they can.

Able students could – and often did – romp ahead of the rest of the class. Extension problems take students beyond the level of the basic techniques. If students want to aim for the higher grades, they are advised to tackle as much of the extension work as they can find time for. This includes A-Level examination-type questions. This is where the top grades are earned.

Kind regards,

Barbara (maths enthusiast, teacher, writer and publisher)


“Since Tom started using Education Quizzes, he has really started to sparkle.”

We have made Education Quizzes free for a whole year so that students like Tom can sparkle too

Despite all the revision tips, tricks and techniques, the best way to help your pupils to retain the knowledge that they have learned in their science lessons is by presenting them with the opportunity to use this knowledge on a regular basis.

However, since there is more than one topic area to cover in science, it can sometimes be a long period of time until a topic is revisited, by which time your pupils will have forgotten much of what they had previously learned.

Which is why we have produced an extensive library of science quizzes and made them free to use for a whole year, so that your students can test and revise their knowledge as frequently as they need and want to.

What’s more, Education Quizzes is ideal to set as homework tasks as it involves little to no PPA time – giving you more time to focus on planning and preparing future lessons and assessing the work of your students from lessons which have gone before.

To get a better idea of what Education Quizzes is all about, simply visit And to sign your school up for Education Quizzes for free for a whole year, go to

If you have any queries, you can easily contact us by sending an email to launches GCSE Maths website to help students with free online resources


A new GCSE maths website has been launched to help students struggling with the subject which is also mobile and tablet friendly.

GCSE maths is a mandatory core subject as well as being one of the most difficult. It is also crucial in terms of progressing onto A ‘levels and onwards to University which makes it is the main subject students and parents worry about.

Topics covered on the website include Numbers, Algebra, Geometry and measure, Probability and Handling data. The lessons have been structured in a way that make it simple and easy to follow. Past exam papers are available as far back as 2010 and the exam boards covered include AQA, EDEXCEL and Cambridge. The past exam paper section includes both mark schemes and examiner reports.

Other features of the free service includes a news section which is updated with the latest news on GCSE and iGCSE maths, a syllabus section on the Pearson, EXEXCEL and Cambridge GCSE variants and a blog section with hints and tips on how to prepare and succeed in GCSE Maths exams.



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Strawberries and cream!

Hello! Simon from Easy Peasy Plays here. With summer rapidly approaching, I just wanted to remind you that time’s running out to claim your £10.00 Amazon voucher 

Our Very Own Graduation


“Our Very Own…” range of plays are specially created to be fun-packed and easy to stage, with no lines to learn! Told with simple actions, brief narration, and super-simple songs, they’re the perfect showcase for your children – even if you’ve never put on a musical before!

Every play includes everything you need for the perfect show – book, CD, backing tracks, performance licence, karaoke videos… even a full money-back guarantee, so you’ve got nothing to lose!

And for a limited time, when you order any summer play we’ll send you a £10.00 Amazon voucher – woo-hoo!* Just click here for full details, but don’t delay – time’s running out…

Amazon voucher with every summer play

Any questions? Don’t hesitate to get in touch – we’re always happy to help.

Very best wishes for an easy peasy day!

Simon Horton

Simon and the team at

Easy Peasy Plays

* Terms and conditions apply. Click here for full details.

For, and on behalf of, Easy Peasy Plays.
Easy Peasy Plays is a trading name of Popcorn School Ltd, a limited company registered in England and Wales under number 8534985 and whose registered offices are located at 20-22 Wenlock Road, London, N1 7GU.