Young scientists put to the test

Year 8 students at High Tunstall College of Science who impressed in a chemistry competition at Teesside University
Year 8 students at High Tunstall College of Science who impressed in a chemistry competition at Teesside University

HARDWORKING students put their chemistry knowledge to the test when they took on nine other schools in a hotly-contested science competition.

Four Year 8 pupils represented High Tunstall College of Science at the Salters’ Festival of Chemistry at Teesside University.

And talented Kaylyn Keenan, Evie Watts, Jessica Foster and Holly Salvin were all absolutely delighted to be named as runners-up, just missing out on top spot.

The popular competition was designed to test not only the students’ chemistry knowledge, but also their teamwork and evaluation skills, and was split into two different challenges.

The first task for the youngsters, the Salters’ Challenge, was to take on the role of forensic scientists in a murder investigation.

They were given six unknown substances, and had to use their chemistry skills to identify the powders and liquids in order to discover the culprit.

The students then took on the university challenge, and had to create a rainbow of colours using acids, alkalis and different indicators.

Melanie Siddell, assistant headteacher at the school, in Elwick Road, said: “The girls didn’t really have any confidence going into the competition, but they did an absolutely fantastic job.

“When the prize-giving began we all sat bacl, ready to applaud the top three schools, so you can imagine our shock when they announced High Tunstall in second place. It was a brilliant achievement.

“The girls were presented with their certificates and won a chemistry prize for the college.”

Mrs Siddell added: “It was a brilliant day all round and the girls really enjoyed it. It was extremely beneficial for all the youngsters involved.

“Before the prize-giving ceremony we were treated to a display of chemistry demonstrations, which both surprised and amazed us.

“At one point the whole room shook from an explosion.”

Budding scientists from across the country took part in the competitions.

In total, 47 Salters’ Festivals of Chemistry were held at universities throughout the UK and Ireland.