Scott Walker, Ogden Outreach Officer at Keele University has been busy designing and building some new physics workshops. His latest creation is a workshop entitled Build Your Own Lego® Colorimeter.
“There were a number of drivers behind the development of a practical workshop like this,” explained Scott. “In particular, there is a known ‘black box problem’ among KS5 students and first year undergraduates. These students are able to operate complex science equipment by simply pressing a couple of buttons, but do not fully appreciate the underlying science.
“By removing this ‘black box’ and instead asking students to make and test their own equipment, I hope they will better engage with the science and technology, and gain a deeper and broader understanding of the underlying physics principles.”
Scott delivered the first Lego® Colorimeter workshop to BTEC Applied Science students at the City of Stoke-on-Trent Sixth Form College last month. “In pairs and groups of three, the Year 12 students all managed to successfully build a Lego® Colorimeter,” says Scott. “There were a wide variety of designs, some very opulent!”
At the end of this month, Scott will be delivering the workshop at the MakeFest Stoke event. “More than 500 members of the public are expected to descend on the City Central Library,” enthuses Scott. “The goal of this event is to bring awareness to local people of the world of creative and technology-based opportunities right on their doorsteps. It will be interesting to see how this activity translates to a shorter, drop-in format!”