Top tips for teaching primary science, from Dr Leigh Hoath

Dr Leigh Hoath is Editor of the Association for Science Education’s Primary Science journal. Her work reaches out to teachers across the whole age phase of primary schools in order to try to support engagement and interest in science. Her interests lie predominantly in improving learning and teaching in Primary Science, pedagogy and working in the outdoor setting.

Dr Leigh Hoath’s top tips for teaching primary science:

  1. Be Bold
  2. Make it relevant
  3. Talk to people in the science industry, in business and make use of the educational outreach science museums offer for schools

One of the easiest ways to make science relevant for kids, whilst keeping to the curriculum, is to subscribe to a magazine like Whizz Pop Bang. Our subscriptions for schools allow children to independently read up-to-date news articles every month about things that are happening in their world, as well as the big news stories written in a way to inform children, without worrying them.

To accompany each issue of Whizz Pop Bang magazine, there’s a library of online resources for schools, all planned and ready to download and teach – with a handy kit list of inexpensive household items to carry out the investigations.

Teachers can deliver hands-on science lessons that are both fun and hands-on for children, getting a ‘deep dive’ experience they’ll remember.

“Using Whizz Pop Bang has revitalized our science teaching. The quality of the resources are first class and particularly support cross curricular links through the reading comprehension activities. We have found these to be particularly useful at the upper end of KS2 where science can be used as a vehicle to support SATs, making use of skills of inference and deduction based on relevant scientific topics. In addition the planning offers exciting practical ideas, particularly useful to teachers who are not scientific specialists. The children absolutely love carrying out the real-life experiments.”

Sally Cowell, Head teacher at Shaw Ridge Primary school, Swindon

How to get the most out of one issue of Whizz Pop Bang science magazine

Mr Tyler, a Year 2 teacher at Great Moor Community Infant School in Stockport, answers the question ‘how can teachers help to get kids and parents more involved in science?’ He came up with a simple answer that’s really easy to implement!

Each month, when Whizz Pop Bang arrives in his classroom, Mr Tyler creates a new Whizz Pop Bang scrapbook.

The children take it in turns to bring both the scrapbook and the copy of Whizz Pop Bang magazine home for the weekend so they can have fun doing a STEM activity, reading the magazine or just doing the puzzles. The children love writing in the scrapbook and proudly sticking in their photos, experiment results and observations. It’s not compulsory, it’s not homework – it’s all about having fun with science at home – and kids, parents, teachers and even Ofsted are loving it!

Toby Tyler, Teacher at Great Moor Infant School in Stockport

Mr Tyler also uses the tag #WPBShare on Twitter to proudly share his class’s Whizz Pop Bang achievements – check it out and tweet us your class’s science achievements too @whizzpopbangmag

Teacher’s reviews for Whizz Pop Bang!

The Whizz Pop Bang Pee Power issue is proving a big hit! We’re loving this review posted by a teacher on facebook…

“I told one of my classes of girls that following the very popular issue all about pooh the latest issue is all about wee. They were very excited. Where but in a science lesson can children talk about wee and pooh? A few months ago we were testing acids and alkalis using pH paper and I mentioned that a couple of years ago one girl tested her urine. Quite a few hands went up to volunteer to do the same, so of course I let a couple of girls go off to the loo with plastic cups. And instructions not to spill them on the way back! My girls love WPB; they can read them if they finish their science early or if we have a few minutes. Most popular with 6 year olds for some reason!”

Madeleine Holmes

Looking for ways to build girls’ confidence in science?

“The positive work that Whizz Pop Bang does to challenge and break down gender stereotypes has really hit a chord with the girls in our school. They love everything about the magazine, from its gender balanced covers to the articles and practical ideas that appeal to them and especially the features on contemporary and historical female scientists and engineers.

Every issue features female scientists discussing their jobs, and there’s rarely a month goes by without girls in my class asking about how you get in to engineering, or become a fossil hunter. The content and the presentation are really helping to open primary school-aged girls’ eyes to the huge variety of careers they could follow and helping them realise that there is no such thing as a job women can’t do!

The focus on historical scientific figures such as Agnes Arber, Florence Nightingale and Rachel Carson has encouraged girls in my class to engage in independent research into significant female scientists of the past and their contributions. It’s also sparked debates in class about why, historically, there are so few prominent women in scientific fields and, most importantly, what they want to do to change this. Whizz Pop Bang has inspired many of the girls in our school to think about and consider careers that they would never have been aware of otherwise. We have seen a marked increase in girl’s interest in, and engagement with, STEM subjects. This year our science club was 70% girls and 8 out of 12 of our Science Lab Technicians were girls.”

Paul Tyler, Mearns Primary School, Glasgow

Supporting upper KS2 with SATS…

“Using Whizz Pop Bang has revitalized our science teaching. The quality of the resources are first class and particularly support cross curricular links through the reading comprehension activities. We have found these to be particularly useful at the upper end of KS2 where science can be used as a vehicle to support SATs, making use of skills of inference and deduction based on relevant scientific topics. In addition the planning offers exciting practical ideas, particularly useful to teachers who are not scientific specialists. The children absolutely love carrying out the real-life experiments.”
Sally Cowell, Head teacher at Shaw Ridge Primary school, Swindon

Science ideas for gifted and talented groups

“I originally ordered Whizz Pop Bang for my then 7 year old. At the time, I was a microbiologist with a real passion for science and wanted my children to have the same passion and natural curiosity. Following the birth of my second child, I retrained as a primary school teacher, specifically Early Years. My passion for science never left me and I like to use science investigations with my class of 4 and 5 year olds to promote cross curricular learning and natural curiosity. I also run the Gifted and Talented group for which I also use ideas and investigations from Whizz Pop Bang. Recently we made the straw DNA model. The children loved it. The investigations can be tailored to any age group from 4 – 12. I absolutely love it.”

Mrs Sara Thomas, Holy Rosary Catholic Primary School, Burton upon Trent


Find out how Whizz Pop Bang can transform science in your school with our monthly magazines, and new downloadable science and reading resources! Visit our schools page for more info and to download a free sample pack.

EYE SPY! A close-up look at the science of sight


Inside this issue of Whizz Pop Bang science magazine you’ll find all sorts of ways to trick your eyes, learn how microscopes work and you can even have a go at making some fantastic 3D glasses.

LEARN HOW TO WRITE YOUR NAME IN BRAILLE: Ever wondered how blind people read braille? In this issue we teach you the braille alphabet so you can learn how to write your name. How long will it take you to remember the pattern of dots that create the letters in your name?

YOU WON’T BELIEVE YOUR EYES! Learn how eyes work, then play some tricks on your peepers with our speedy science activities.

SILLY SCIENCE: How do creatures who live in the dark sense their surroundings? Find out about six creatures who live in the dark and have developed some amazing ways to sense their environments, find food and avoid danger.

HOW STUFF WORKS: Take a close look inside a microscope, and enter the competition to win a pocket microscope!

SENSATIONAL SCIENTISTS: Read all about Patricia Bath’s medical inventions and how they’ve restored sight to thousands of people.

Loads of awesome eye-deas to keep your budding young scientists entertained! Visit our online shop to buy this issue for just £3.99 with FREE UK delivery. Got a question about Whizz Pop Bang or subscribing? Check out our FAQs or get in touch by emailing our friendly customer services team: hello@whizzpopbang.com

Whizz Pop Bang reader Elsa supports Annabelle’s Challenge charity with magic envelopes

We often receive requests for prizes, and we love to help where we can. Last week we received a handwritten letter from Whizz Pop Bang reader Elsa, who is nearly 8, asking for help supporting her event to raise money for the charity Annabelle’s Challenge.

We’re super impressed with Elsa’s letter and determination to support this charity. She’s even included a plan of how magic envelopes work, top job Elsa!

And we’re delighted to be helping Elsa with her magic envelopes campaign… we look forward to hearing from the lucky Whizz Pop Bang winner. Good luck to Elsa and her friends, doing a fantastic job helping to raise money for people with vascular EDS.

Annabelle’s Challenge is the UK charity for Vascular Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (vascular EDS), a rare life limiting genetic disorder. The charity raise funds for research, awareness campaigns and offer support and advice for people living with the condition. To find out more visit https://www.annabelleschallenge.org

Celebrating World Book Day with a free book token inside Whizz Pop Bang!

Whizz Pop Bang science magazine for kids QUAKE RATTLE AND ROLL

We’ve teamed up with World Book Day to give Whizz Pop Bang readers a free book token in our Active Earth ‘Quake, Rattle and Roll’ issue!

To get your free book simply cut out your voucher and take it to your local bookshop (find your local participating bookshop here) and swap it for one of the TWELVE (exclusive, new and completely FREE) World Book Day books. For more details about the £1 book for Ireland click here.

Or, if you’d prefer, you can use your book token to get £1 off any full price book instead. And if you’d rather get an audiobook, that’s fine too! It’s your choice, just as long as the book or audiobook costs at least £2.99 (or €3.99 in Ireland).

Then all YOU have to do is take your book home and enjoy it! 📙

The £1 books are also available in braille, large print & audio via Guide Dogs and RNIB. For braille and audio call 0303 123 9999 and for large print call 0118 9838275. The World Book Day book tokens are valid from Thursday 28 February – Sunday 31 March 2019.

Thanks to National Book Tokens and lots of lovely book publishers and booksellers, World Book Day, in partnership with schools all over the country, will be distributing more than 15 million £1 World Book Day book tokens to children and young people (that’s almost one for every child/young person under 18 in the UK and Ireland).

Share a story with a budding scientist on World Book Day! We know our readers love reading about science, so we’ve put together our top 7 science stories for kids

The Matilda Effect by Ellie Irving

When Matilda discovers that her astrophysicist Granny once discovered a planet, she’s furious that her sneaky boss has tried to take the credit. Will our science-loving hero get to the Nobel Prize ceremony before the award goes to the wrong person?

The Matilda Effect by Ellie Irving

The Infinite Lives of Maisie Day, The Many Lives of Albie Bright and The Jamie Drake Equation by Christopher Edge

The Infinite Lives of Maisie Day  The Many Worlds of Albie Bright  The Jamie Drake Equation

This gripping series uses physics, astronomy, maths and more to tell fantastic, science-packed-stories with more twists than a bowl of fusilli pasta.

The Great Rocket Robbery by Frank Cottrell-Boyce

Great Rocket Robbery- Jacket

This £1 World Book Day book puts a fun, fictional spin on the story of Laika, the dog who went to space.

Moth by Isabel Thomas

Moth by Isabel Thomas

A beautiful picture book exploring evolution through the story of the peppered moth, written by Whizz Pop Bang’s resident science expert, Isabel Thomas.

The DNA Detectives series by Dr Mandy Hartley

The DNA Detectives DNA detectives Smuggler's Daughter

The heroes of this crimes series use DNA and forensic science to solve mysteries and uncover incredible secrets.

Have you got a favourite science story? Tell us all about it, we love a good book review!👇🏾

10 Awesomely Amazing recycling heroes!

Whizz Pop Bang magazine recycling heroes

Big shout out to our 10 Awesomely Amazing recycling heroes in our RUBBISH SCIENCE issue!

♻️♻️♻️♻️♻️♻️♻️♻️♻️♻️

1. Melati and Isabel Wijsen who set up Bye Bye Plastic Bags
2. Sammie Vance with her recycled plastic buddy benches
3. Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu who set up soleRebels designing shoes from old tyres
4. Ryan Hickman, age 9 runs his own recycling company
5. Aaron Westbrook 3D prints prosthetic limbs from recycled plastic
6. Anna Bullus who set up Gumdrop ltd making shoes with pink soles from recycled gum
7. Esther Bird campaigned to stop single-use plastics being used at her school
8. Julia Bray, Ashton Cofer and Luke and Natalie Clay converted styrofoam cups into activated carbon
9. Zymal Umer set up Zee Bags to make gift bags from recycled newspaper
10. Amy and Ella Meek from Kids Against Plastic campaign to help families, cafes and councils to be ‘Plastic Clever’

So inspiring to see so many kids taking the initiative, the future’s looking greener everyone! 👍🏽

What age is Whizz Pop Bang for?

What age range is Whizz Pop Bang magazine for? We’re often asked this question, and the answer is it really depends on the child. As a guide we say our magazines are written and designed for 6 to 12-year-olds, however the best way to see if it’s suitable for your child is to have a browse before you buy! It’s also worth having a read of some of the reviews from parents and grandparents who tell us the ages of the children they subscribe for.

Have a flick through our Planetary Adventures issue here 👇🏾

If you have any questions about Whizz Pop Bang visit our FAQ page, send us an email or call us on 0330 2233790. We’re always happy to hear from our customers!

Awesomely honest reviews for Whizz Pop Bang…

Boys with their SPY issue of Whizz Pop Bang science magazine for kids

Your reviews and feedback mean the world to us, so thank you to all these families who have taken the time to share their thoughts on Whizz Pop Bang, the awesomely amazing science magazine for kids!

“My 9yr old daughter has received her first copy and is thrilled with it. Excellent magazine. Word of warning though, I do unfortunately appear to have inadvertently learned stuff too due to her constant verbal updates whilst reading it. Be warned, it could happen to you!” 🤯
Gemma Dodgson

“I love the fact that women engineers and scientists feature so prominently. I hadn’t realised this was the case when I first subscribed, and originally subscribed simply because it looked like a fun way to get a greater exposure to science, but it really stands out for me. I also love the use of proper scientific terminology because it familiarises children to this language and makes science more accessible.”
Cat

“My daughter starts asking a week before it pops through our letterbox when will it be here. Best birthday present she’s ever received.”
Nicky Doyle

“My son said “Whizz Pop Bang is the best magazine ever, I love the jokes especially”
Ella Weaver

“My son reads it cover to cover! More than once! He even refers back to back copies. (The pile on the bed is huge!)”
Ed Bickerstaffe

“Fantastic magazine and helps so much with our daughters love of science”
Tracey Cook

“My daughter loves the magazine. She is really excited every month when it arrives. She wants to be a scientist when she grows up so that she can ‘change the world’ and that says it all really!”
Anna Hodgin

“We are a home educating family and I choose not to use the discount because I believe that it is already great value for money. We (age range from 34 – 5) all get excited when Whizz Pop Bang comes through the door. It gives us the opportunity to explore things/people that we may not have heard of before in a style that all of us can understand and use as a base to explore articles further. I personally enjoy ‘Animal antics’, ‘Interview with a science hero’, ‘how stuff works’, Ten awesomely amazing’ and Sensational scientists.”
Leech family

“It is an awesome magazine. As a mum I like that you email me a supply list before the magazine arrives. All three of my children love it ages 6, 13 and 15.”
Michelle

“I’m also a Childminder so I’ve kept all the copies so they can access all the back issues when topics arise at school. I imagine that the babies I mind will look at these in the years to come as well as my grandchildren.”
Caroline Francis

“My child took a copy to school and the teacher was so delighted he said he’d buy W.P.B too! 😁”
E. Yates

“I have been very impressed with WPB. My boys love receiving their own post (in such vibrant and environmentally friendly packaging) each month and can’t wait to open it. The experiments and articles are pitched at the perfect level and inspire them to think about topics that they might not otherwise come across. I will be continuing the subscription for their little sister when she is old enough, too.”
Rebecca Wale

“Whizz Pop Bang is an excellent resource that I have recommended to several parents and teachers. My kids look forward to receiving the magazine every month, and my son is currently reading this month’s out loud to me. Please keep up the good work!”
Cathy Campbell

“I’m an archaeological scientist. I want my son to understand why I love what I do; that science can be beautiful, and awe-inspiring, and fun. Your magazine forms a central part of this nefarious propaganda machine, so … thank you!”
Chloe Duckworth

“I love the accessible feel and the range of topics covered each month. I really appreciate the advance warning emails so I can prepare for forthcoming experiments”
Jo Jenks

“Our daughter loves receiving Whizz Pop Bang looks forward to it each month. She’s excited about science and a passionate feminist so it’s great that the magazine provides role models of women in STEM. We’re also impressed with the decision to use paper envelopes rather than plastic wrappers. Thank you.”
Sarah Giles

10 Awesomely Amazing Musical Instruments!

Inside the Christmas Jingle Bell Rock issue of Whizz Pop Bang magazine, we discover 10 awesomely amazing musical instruments; from the bizarre instruments made of fruit and vegetables, to this rather magical instrument that is played without even touching it… the theremin.

The theremin is a musical instrument that is played without being touched. Err, what? How does that work?! The electronic instrument uses an electromagnetic field around two antenna, and the musician disrupts this field with their hands to create a spooky sound. Watch this video of Ennio Morricone to discover the mysterious sounds this instrument can make 👇🏾

To see all the weird and wonderful musical instruments featured in this issue of Whizz Pop Bang magazine, order from our online shop. Magazines cost just £3.99 with FREE UK delivery.