Scientific Processes

To enable students to be effective scientists we must first of all discuss the processes that encourage this to happen.

  • How does this happen in your school?
  • Do staff agree on certain processes?
  • Do some people not value science at all?
Here is one interactive model to evaluate
(from the University of Berkeley)

Thanks to Malcolm Wilson and Adam Foster for some of the ideas used on this page

 See example course programme below. Contact Richard if you would like this course delivered in your school.

28th Nov 2014

Inspire people

Animation created using AnimateIT App

Sharing Science

To be a good scientist you need to be able to 

  • research ideas
  • develop ideas
  • discuss ideas
  • share your ideas and findings
This can be done using books, internet searches, discussion forum, social media, blogs and wikis. To share ideas when using iPads you need tools such as a cloudstorage or apps such as Showbie

Helpsheet by Richard Smith

Science at Home

Encourage students to talk to their family about science. Provide simple instructions to make the project non threatening. Videos can also be used to get a project started.

You can embed videos (without the adverts on) to a local web page or live website/VLE

eg The 2 can puzzle (via poundten Youtube)

Use of Greenscreen

The use of a fabric, monocolour screen allows any background to be created from a photograph or video. This allows scientific contexts to really come alive.

A company called Serif provides teachers with a FREE copy of their great software Movieplus Here are 13 ideas from them.

I also use some very easy to use software from Kulian called I Can Present (for PC or Mac).

An easy to use app for the iPad is by Do Ink

Dissecting Things

Everyone likes taking things apart or cutting things up. However, it can get a bit gory. Here is a popular app for you to try.

Frog Dissection (now includes life cycle information and a quiz) £1.69

You can also see inside the human body with a range of apps. Here is one we have found. My Incredible Body .You can navigate the body, for example from the nose in to the lungs.


Often in school we show the student a  picture and explect them to understand the principles behind the science. However, it is much more effective to allow them to play and explore the context. This is called simulation. Here are some good examples. They encourage exploration of a subject or topic area

Tick Bait's Universe Free Lite or £1.99

Snapshot of the universe £2.99

Algodoo £2.99 (Lesson Plans)

Little Alchemy Free for PC or tablet

Scale of the Universe 2 (needs Flash)

Universe Sandbox


Building Circuits (includes symbols) £0.69

Book Authoring

Create your own science magazines or books using apps and software such as

Book Creator App. (embed video and audio) Comic Life App + Software  PC or Mac +Ideas across the curriculum

iBooks Author for iMac


Create your own video clips (see 2 can puzzle), share these within school or publicly via

Use other people's content


Certain apps make use of the cameras inbuilt camera, microphone and gyroscope

What's My Heart Rate uses the camera

Decibel 10th uses the microphone

Globilab uses inbuilt iPad sensors

Sparkvue uses inbuilt iPhone or Ipad sensors


Record conversations linked to scientific investigation or events in school that are linked to science.

Use the free software Audacity to upload content as a podcast that can be subscribed to. Embed this into a website.

Augmented Reality

Uses software to recognise a special shape in front of a camera. Once recognised by the software movement of the shape allows a 3D image to be manipulated.

Download content to mobile devices and then trigger them with codes that can be displayed on worksheets. Examples include Second Sight (eg  Awesome Animals) and Aurasma

Time Lapse

1. Using a camera to capture lots of  still images that can be played in sequence. Richard has a Genius 1500 you can borrow for school use.

2. Sequencing pictures to create a video. Think of 10 scientific words linked to this sequence by talented photographer Ciaran O'Connor.

3. Analysing other people's time lapse films

4. Using an App on a tablet such as an ipad that takes images and sequences them. My favourite is AnimateIt. Here is an example from the creative Holmer Lake School, Telford.

Space Exploration

We need to get students doing a lot more than copying & pasting from the web and regurgitating information from books. This blog post from Prof. Steve Wheeler give ideas.

Lets encourage them to explore. 

1. Twitter Philae2014 (pics/graphs/data/ideas)

2. Microsoft WorldWideTelescope

3. Analysing Films: eg Interstellar


Most young people seem intrigued by dinosaurs. Their size, diet, history, movement, names all offer intrigue. Resources:

Visit our Igloo to explore amazing places.

Dinosaur Apps reviewed here by 'Best Apps'

I am a text block. Click on me to drag me around or click a corner handle to resize me. Click the settings icon (it's the left one, looks like a cog) to change this text. You can type new text into me or cut and paste text from somewhere else. Click outside of me when you're done and any changes will be saved.

Climate Science

Chasing Ice

3D Printing

Apps for design from Autodesk