Noadswood Build a Refinery

June 27, 2014

This term Mrs Smith, a science teacher at Noadswood, joined a group of STEM Ambassadors from Fawley Refinery and Dr. Sarah Newman from Intech, Winchester to develop an activity to get more people involved with STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths).  The activity needed to be relevant to studies, prove beneficial to the students and compliment the school curriculum. Out of this process the ‘BART’ (Build a Refinery Today) activity was created.

The activity, which required pupils to work in teams of five, was launched and piloted at Noadswood in March with a class of year 8 pupils.  Each team member assumed one of five roles; Refinery Manager, Technical Manager, Operations Manager, Project Manager and Environmental Manager.  They were given a budget of £10m and were asked to work together over the course of four science lessons to make decisions based on their respective roles.  During the final lesson the pupils have to dress up in character and present their final decision giving consideration to all aspects including the environment, costs and overall projected profit.

The pupils thought long and hard about their decisions and really enjoyed the activity.  Seeing maths and science being applied in a fun way helps pupils understand the real life applications of these subjects.