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Crushed Can

This is one you really should do for yourself. The video is way too long, but I like the fact that he uses such a big can and it serves to illustrate one of the problems with this demo – you just don”t know when the thing is going to go…

Penicillin

There are some great science films out there which are well worth showing to your classes. Unfortunately there’s not enough time to show more than one or two such films during the school year, so it would be really useful to have more short films to give a bit of background and history to the topics we need to teach – a kind of video version of those boxes you get in text books, which tell you a little bit of history or provide some biographical detail of a scientist.… Read more Penicillin

Rosie and the amazing technicolour test-tube

Here’s another video that might come in useful when teaching about acids and alkalis – Rosie Coates shows us her favourite chemistry demonstration involving a giant test-tube and some universal indicator solution. As well as showing us a fantastic demo, Rosie explains how the science of acids and alkalis can have important real-world applications. This is another video where it’s really worth hitting the “HQ” button on the youtube player after you’ve hit “play”.

Dolly the Sheep

A brief summary of the Dolly story, including an explanation of the science. The voiceover is a little annoying and it might be a little too brief, but definitely useful for teaching about cloning if the only other resource you have is a textbook. Watch Dolly the Sheep at EncycloMedia.com

The Big Bang, Briefly

I’ve been hunting for a good short film about the big bang but have yet to find one. I was hoping this film might be the one, but it doesn’t quite do the job as it doesn’t go into enough detail for me. However, it does (very briefly) explain some of the more interesting ideas Physicists have about the universe. It’s a good one to use for discussing the “true” nature of the universe…and the fact that nobody really knows. In case you’re interested, the scientist in the film is… Read more The Big Bang, Briefly

The Tree of Life

This short film, narrated by Sir David Attenborough, features a stunning animation that should be useful for teaching evolution at KS4. You’ll still need to show your students a diagram of the Tree of Life at some point, but this film does a great job of bringing such diagrams to life. You can download a high definition version of the film at the Wellcome Trust’s dedicated “Tree of Life” website where you’ll also find a bunch of other resources to help teach evolution, including worksheets and the transcript of the… Read more The Tree of Life

New Free Videos – help wanted

I hope to be filming some science demonstration videos over the next few months and I’d like to hear from teachers who would like to have a high quality video of a particular demonstration. My own opinion is that you should, where possible, do demonstrations live in your classrooms. However, there are some demos that are too difficult / expensive / time consuming to do which would be really useful to show students. Also, there are some great demonstrations done by live science performers which might be useful to have… Read more New Free Videos – help wanted

Acid Spraying Ants

I love teaching about acids and alkalis at KS3 because there’s quite a bit of fun practical work you can do – making an indicator out of red cabbage is an activity that Year 7 always seem to love. The textbook way of starting this topic is to talk about about acids and alkalis around the house… but this might be far more dramatic / interesting way to introduce the subject: The clip is from Smalltalk Diaries, a series of ten short shows about the lives of minibeasts.

Wake Up, Freak Out – then Get a Grip

I’ve already blogged about climate change videos but wanted to post this film by Leo Murray separately because it really is in a class of its own. It’s a beautifully animated, thought-provoking film, and one which I think students will enjoy watching. You can find the HD version here. There is some good science in the film, with clear explanations of mechanisms that cause climate change and of how we might reach a “tipping point”. (Leo provides a copy of the script, including references here.) However, it is an unashamedly… Read more Wake Up, Freak Out – then Get a Grip