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I’m a scientist… Physics Zone

Published: 12 May 2020

As part of the I’m a Scientist, Get me out of here programme of online school engagement, a new Physics Zone has been launched with funding support from The Ogden Trust.

The Physics Zone is an online, student-led science enrichment activity which connects students with physicists working in a range of roles, from industry, academia and the public sector. In the ‘ASK’ section, children can send in their science questions to any of the 111 physicists who are part of the programme and they will answer!

I'm a scientist stay at home graphic

Once a month, teachers can sign-up to bring their classes together for a 40-minute text-based chat session where they will be able to chat live with up to 10 physics professionals and with each other.

Students can ask questions about anything they like, whether that’s discovering a career path they’d never thought of or finding out what scientists are really interested in. Each week students vote for their favourite scientist based on who they think has answered their questions the best!

Taking part in the I’m a Scientist Physics Zone helps students to get a better understanding of what physics is, and who it is for (answer anyone!); they gain confidence in asking questions and they are interacting with real-life physicists. The Physics Zone is helping students to stay connected with teachers and with classmates and is keeping them engaged in the wonders of physics.

I'm a scientist stay at home graphic

“Live chats have been busy with so many questions for our scientists,” explains Shane McCracken who is leading the Physics Zone. “Students have been discovering everything from how a scientist started in their job to qualifications they’ve taken and what they had for breakfast. Students may even discover a future job they didn’t know existed! Already this week, school students and physicists have chatted about energy sources of the future, from fusion to Dyson spheres!”

The Physics Zone will be open until July 20. It takes two minutes to register and you can sign up now to take part and book your live chat sessions.

Part of an Ogden partnership? Sign up here.

Who it is for

Much of the activity is pupil-led (the students ask the questions they want to) so different age groups, ability levels, and backgrounds all get something out of it.

  • Ages from Years 5/P5 to Year 13/S6
  • Secondary schools, academies, special schools, pupil referral units and other non-mainstream educational settings
  • Youth groups such as Guides, Scouts and other community groups.

Equipment needed

All your students need is internet access. The live chats are text-based (no video or audio needed) and run through the I am a Scientist site.

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