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Pupils at St Werburgh’s and St Columba’s Catholic Primary School enjoying a ‘magic of chemistry’ workshop presented by Phil Sturla, from the University of Chester.

Staff from the Faculty, which is based at Thornton Science Park, have been visiting schools as part of their STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) outreach programme. They aim to inspire young people through interactive STEM workshops.

One of these workshops is the ‘Magic of Chemistry’, designed by Dr Andrew Fogg, Senior Lecturer in Chemical Engineering in the Faculty. It is an interactive and visually appealing show of chemistry demonstrations which highlights the different observations that can be made when performing chemical reactions, such as colour changes, changes of state, and different energy transfers.

Phil Sturla, a Technical Officer in the Faculty, recently visited St Werburgh’s and St Columba’s Catholic Primary School to engage the students in what chemistry has to offer. The Year 6 school children saw tap water change to pink, yellow and green as it was transferred from one seemingly empty beaker to the next. Other demonstrations included mixing two clear solutions turned into a coloured solid, which students were able to examine; and turning purple solution to clear solution when a lamp was shone on it.

Angela Lupton from the STEM Outreach team at Thornton Science Park said: “It’s always an absolute pleasure to take our STEM workshops to schools, and to see the fantastic reaction on children’s faces. Our goal is to inspire a generation of future scientists, and we like to think that these ‘magic shows’ help do just that!”

Kerry Prendergast, DDSL (Deputy Safeguarding Lead) and Pastoral Manager at St Werburgh's and St Columba's Catholic Primary School said: “The University delivered an informative demonstration that captured the children's imagination and inspired a generation of chemists. The kids loved it!”

The Faculty of Science and Engineering’s STEM Outreach team is always happy to visit schools in the Cheshire, Warrington and North East Wales area. To find out more and to book a visit, please contact: For more information, visit: our STEM outreach webpages.

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