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Science Challenge 2021


Some of the entries from this year's Science Challenge.  Scroll down to see more brilliant entries. 

Introduction to this year's challenge

It may have been an academic year like no other, but we were determined that the disruption and social distancing requirements wouldn't stop us from celebrating primary science once again.  In partnership with The Francis Crick Institute and Wellcome, we adapted our Primary Science Challenge so that pupils could take part in their classrooms or from home.  The results are phenomenal!

As part of this year's Great Science Share for Schools, we gave pupils the theme of the climate emergency.  In recognition of the UK's hosting of COP 26 in November, we gave the young scientists of Camden the provocation: 'the world isn't listening'.

It’s clear that the global community isn’t taking decisive-enough action to respond to the climate emergency.

We want your responses to support us all to argue for change in our local, national and international communities.

Pupils were asked to undertake primary or secondary research at home, or primary research in their classrooms.  This gave them data unique to them and their experiences of the world.

The young people of Camden were allowed to respond in any way they saw fit: a poster, a presentation, a report, a video...  

We said that we would assess entries to the Challenge based on three criteria: 

  • Clear: concise presentation, specific vocabulary
  • Correct: accuracy, calculations, data sources
  • Creative: capture and hold attention; language; format

Teachers judged all the entries submitted for their classes, and then sent the best of these already fantastic efforts to us.  What you can see below are the best responses to 'the world isn't listening' from children in years 3, 4, 5 and 6.

This year's sponsors are:

  • Dr Maria Ocampo-Hafalla, Lab Manager for Education and Science Educator, The Francis Crick Institute
  • Louise Subberfield, Primary Programme Lead, Wellcome
  • Dr Thomas Barton, Primary Science Project Manager, Wellcome
  • Niymet McCann, Head of Science Faculty, Regent High School
  • Richard Harrison, Director of Community Engagement, Regent High School

The sponsors have shared their reflections on this year's challenge:

Maria said "At the Francis Crick Institute, we champion “Discovery Without Boundaries,” and this year’s Science Challenge truly reflects that spirit. Working scientifically and creatively, as well as communicating clearly and effectively, are crucial skills in addressing the global challenges we face today. I see these skills displayed in the children’s entries, and I applaud our Camden pupils, teachers and school communities for continuing to share and celebrate science in these extraordinary times.                              "This year’s theme was sustainability and the climate emergency, and our students’ ideas and investigations were innovative, interesting and inspiring. I’ve had the pleasure and privilege of co-developing and co-sponsoring our Science Challenge for the past five years, and I’m so very proud of everyone who’s taken part and embodied Greta Thunberg’s words that “no one is too small to make a difference.” 
"Congratulations to everyone who has taken part in this year’s challenge", emphasised Louise.  "The range of work shared, from topical investigations undertaken and reported by budding scientists to advisory posters and presentations of scientific understanding, was fabulous and inspiring.  Well done!"
Tom said of his first Science Challenge that "It has been a real privilege to be involved in this year’s Science Challenge.  The standard and variety of entries from the children has been excellent and I have really enjoyed viewing them all.  It was great to see so many Camden pupils engaging so thoughtfully with such an important topic and finding their own way of communicating their research and ideas about the climate emergency. Congratulations to all of you!"
"I am very excited to review the very high standard and outstanding work from all students," explained Niymet.  "Every piece of work represented has made the 'Science at Home' Challenge a very special event."
Richard noted that "The imagination of pupils across Camden is tremendous!  It is these imaginative impulses, along with accurate science, that will help the world to find a way out of the climate crisis.  We hope that the leaders gathering in Glasgow later in the year will take the time to look at the ingenuity of the responses from our borough's children.  That would lead to very exciting change."

This website is being launched on Tuesday 15 June 2021 to coincide with the Great Science Share for School's 'Great Science Share Day', when young scientists across the world will be celebrating the discoveries they have made during this year's Great Science Share.

The schools taking part this year are: 

Argyle Primary School, Brecknock Primary School, Brookfield Primary School, Edith Neville Primary School, Fitzjohn's Primary School, Hawley Primary School, Kingsgate Primary School, Netley Primary School, Primrose Hill Primary School, Rhyl Primary School, Richard Cobden Primary School, Rosary Catholic Primary School, St Mary and St Pancras CE Primary School and Torriano Primary School.

A huge thank you to all the teachers who have made it possible for their pupils to participate in the challenge this year, and to Maria, Louise and Tom for their inspiration and dedication to young people's active engagement and exploration in science.


Winning entries

The winning entries for each participating school are as follows.  Use the links to look at the fantastic pieces of work the pupils have produced.  Formats include posters, presentations, films and pieces of writing.

Argyle Primary School

Brecknock Primary School

Brookfield Primary School

Edith Neville Primary School

Fitzjohn's Primary School

Hawley Primary School

Kingsgate Primary School

Netley Primary School

Primrose Hill Primary School

Rhyl Primary School

Richard Cobden Primary School

Rosary Catholic Primary School

St Mary and St Pancras CE Primary School

Torriano Primary School

Congratulations to all of the winners, and a big well done to every one of the pupils who took part this year.  Science will do well in your hands!