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Famelab Finals

posted 10 Feb 2015, 01:59 by   [ updated 10 Feb 2015, 02:00 ]
Students at MBA brought science to life as they took part in a countywide competition which saw them explore a range of topics, including alcoholism and malaria.

Millbrook Academy held the finale of the FameLab competition on Friday, which saw a dozen Year 9 pupils give a three minute talk on science, technology, engineering or maths.

Last year Cheltenham Festivals launched FameLab, which is supported by EDF Energy. It aims to improve young people’s science communication skills.

Supported by their teachers, pupils at Millbrook Academy have spent weeks preparing their three minute presentations to explain a scientific topic of their choice.

Friday’s finale saw the pupils present their research to Year 7 pupils and to judges Philippa Claridge, Cheltenham Festivals’ manager, Dr Matteo Degiacomi, chemistry research assistant from the University of Oxford and Sarah Watts, vice-principal of the academy.

Philippa said: “This is a really great idea for so many reasons. We are seeing a shortage of scientists and engineers in this country. If young people do not get the opportunity to understand and learn in depth about science now, from a young age they will not make the right decision in the future.

“Primary schools make science fun but then pupils get to secondary schools and many do not enjoy it anymore.”

Pupil Megan Lewis-Watkins, 14, researched the effects of alcohol. During her presentation she explained the benefits and negative effects drink can have on a person and how many units should drunk by men and women.

She said: “I chose this subject because many people drink but not many know the health effects it can have on you. I hope my presentation will help people who suffer from a drink problem.

“I researched my information from the BBC website. A lot of time went into this, it took around three months to prepare my presentation. We had many lessons to help us. Our teachers chose a selection of pupils who they thought might want to take part, this was eventually narrowed down to a few of us.”

The winner from each school will receive a masterclass in communication training and a work placement in a local company.

FameLab Academy is a sister competition to Cheltenham Festivals’ FameLab and it is hosted in 26 countries.