Cheshire puts budding boffins to the test at half-term Amazed by Science Festival

Earth, salt, slime and poo go under the microscope in May school break

Chester, 16 May 2018: Families are invited to put on their white coats and join in the Amazed by Science Festival (www.amazedbyscience.co.uk) during the May half-term school holidays, as secrets of science and technology are revealed across Cheshire. Here are five top days out for budding boffins:

1. Discover how poo helps the wildlife at Chester Zoo

Poo Science (27 May-1 June, 11am-4pm) delves into the world of endocrinology, aka monitoring animal hormones in faeces, to help creatures at Chester Zoo and for conservation in the wider natural world. Families can join the rangers in the Botanist’s Lab for this fun interactive workshop. Free with general admission, see prices here.

2. Make your own slime at Alderley Park

Kids can get down to the serious business of learning about polymers while having a whale of a time mixing up pots of slimy goo at Mad Science Presents Slime Zone & Flight Zone Funstations (31 May, 12pm-3pm) at Alderley Park Conference Centre. There’s also the chance to explore aerodynamics by creating a paper plane from a choice of six designs and sending it on a test flight to loop the loops. Plus fun experiments will be on offer at the Wacky Science Lab presented by Waters, pictured top left (31 May, 12pm-3pm). Free.

3. Recreate The Last Supper in clay at Lion Salt Works

Salt Science (29-30 May, 10.30am-4pm), revealing how the mineral is used in a variety of scientific experiments, will take place at Lion Salt Works, pictured top right, one of the UK’s last open-pan salt-making sites, now an award-winning museum. Meanwhile, Make a Little Leigh Terracotta Tile (1 June, 10.30am12.30pm, 2pm-4pm) offers the chance to spot the differences between an original painting and the intricate terracotta sculpture of ‘The Last Supper’ that appears on the reredos of St Michael & All Angels in nearby Little Leigh. Families can also try recreating a section of the scene in clay. Free, suggested donation £2.

4. Find out why boats float or sink at Anderton Boat Lift

The science behind the Anderton Boat Lift, an astonishing piece of Victorian engineering that bridges a 400ft wide and 50ft deep gap between the River Weaver and the Trent and Mersey Canal, will be the focus of two special sessions. Families can learn about which objects float or sink, make a boat and fill it with cargo at the Floating & Sinking Workshop (30 May, 11am-12pm). The Hydraulics Workshop (30 May, 1pm-2pm) is a practical investigation on how hydraulics power the lift. Free, booking essential.

5. Learn how to help preserve the planet at Jodrell Bank 

Operation Earth Hands-on Activities (27 May-3 June, 10.30am-4.30pm), part of a nationwide project that aims to encourage understanding of the environmental issues facing our planet, is one of nine events taking place during half-term at Jodrell Bank, pictured centre. Others include Bee Backpacks, a self-guided trail around the attraction’s gardens themed on the ancient craft of beekeeping, while No place like home: Live Science Show is filled with fun experiments and interactive demonstrations about the solar system. Free with general admission, see prices here.

Follow Amazed By Science on Facebook @amazedbyscience and on Twitter @amazedbyscience.

@Follow Chester, Cheshire & Beyond on Twitter @VisitCheshire, on Facebook at facebook.com/VisitCheshire, on Instagram at Instagram.com/visitchesterandcheshire and on YouTube at Youtube.com/user/MktgCheshire. Follow the blog at visitcheshire.com/ideas-andinspiration/blog.

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