On the move cover

The secrets of stinging nettles: natural navigation with Tristan Gooley

The August edition of Whizz Pop Bang: ON THE MOVE is about amazing migrations and is packed with the science behind all sorts of incredible journeys made by animals and humans!

Inside, we chat to Tristan Gooley, a natural navigator who looks for nature’s clues and works out how they can help us to find our way. Learning more about this fascinating skill is a brilliant way to engage children with the natural word – keep reading to learn a nifty tricky you can teach them when you’re outdoors together.

We asked Tristan to explain a little about his unusual job:

“Every single plant, every single animal, even every single cloud is telling us something about what’s going on around us. I’m a nature detective, trying to solve each clue. I don’t look for specific things that are interesting or amazing: instead, I wonder what the signs around me can reveal. Sometimes it’s a plant showing me which way is north, or a stinging nettle telling me I’m near a town. It’s so much fun!”
Tristan Gooley in Whizz Pop Bang: ON THE MOVE

Tristan Gooley, Natural Navigator

If you’re wondering how to keep children entertained on a long walk or how to help your child connect with nature, here’s a tip from Tristan all about the secrets of stinging nettles:

If you teach children a trick that is related to their experience of the wild then you could grab their attention

Find an area with both stinging nettles and white dead-nettles:

White dead-nettle
Stinging nettle

Ask the children what the white dead-nettle is – they will probably guess ‘stinging nettle’. Most kids can identify this before any other wildflower, because it has a big impact on their experience of the outdoors!

Next, show how brave you are by running your hands up and down the white dead-nettle, then dare them to do the same. Once they realise that white dead-nettles are different to stinging nettles, they take an interest. They understand that the white flower is the important clue to which one stings, and that’s something worth remembering!

It also tends to stick as this is a great trick for showing it off to other kids!

Nature appreciation that leads to fewer stings AND the ability to show off? That’s a recipe for getting kids interested!

Find out more in this brilliant blog post about engaging children with nature. Want more tips like this? Head over to Tristan’s website to discover all sorts of intriguing ways to read nature’s clues – they’re guaranteed to liven up a long walk with children!

Read more about Tristan’s fascinating job in Whizz Pop Bang: ON THE MOVE – it’s in our shop now.

On the move cover

Whizz Pop Bang is a top-quality, gender-neutral, advert-free science magazine for families everywhere. Each issue is packed with experiments, activities, amazing facts, puzzles, jokes, riddles and more. Find out more here!


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Kit list for Whizz Pop Bang 61: ON THE MOVE

Find out about some of the most amazing animal migrations on Earth in the brand-new edition of Whizz Pop Bang: ON THE MOVE!

Come on an epic journey to investigate the science of migrations and travel. This issue, we’ll…
🐦 Build a welcoming bird bath
🧭 Make a compass in a jar
🌊 Investigate the impact of oil pollution
🐯 Learn how animal tracking devices work
🦜 Craft a brilliant balancing bird

Plus experiments, jokes, riddles, quizzes, competitions and more! Sign up by 4th August 2020 to receive this issue. 

Here’s a list of the extra bits you’ll need to complete every activity this month. As ever, there is loads of science fun to be had, even if you don’t have every single thing on the list. Let’s get going! 

Here’s a printable version of this month’s kit list 👇


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Whizz Pop Bang Coral Reef cover

Watch a Caribbean reef octopus change colour!

Want to watch an amazing octopus video? Using special skin cells called chromatophores, Caribbean reef octopuses can change colour at high speed to blend seamlessly into their coral home. This allows them to sneak up on prey and hide from predators.

See one in action here!

Discover more awesomely amazing coral reef residents in Whizz Pop Bang: REMARKABLE REEFS, available in our shop now!

Whizz Pop Bang Coral Reef cover

Whizz Pop Bang is a top-quality, gender-neutral, advert-free science magazine for families everywhere. Each issue is packed with experiments, activities, amazing facts, puzzles, jokes, riddles and more. Find out more here!


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Whizz Pop Bang Coral Reef cover

Make an edible coral polyp

Have you been reading about coral polyps in Whizz Pop Bang’s REMARKABLE REEFS edition?

This video shows how you can make your own edible polyp using banana, biscuits and sweets. Yum!

Find out more in REMARKABLE REEFS, available in our shop now!

This is great activity for schools teaching Animals, including humans and Living things and habitats at Key Stage 2. If you’re looking for science activities linked to coral reefs, give it a try!

Whizz Pop Bang is a top-quality, gender-neutral, advert-free science magazine for families everywhere. Each issue is packed with experiments, activities, amazing facts, puzzles, jokes, riddles and more. Find out more here!


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FREE science activities for year 2 and P3!

Now that schools are closed, have you become a home educator overnight? Whizz Pop Bang is the world’s most awesomely amazing kids’ science magazine, bursting with hands-on experiments, facts and fun, and we want to help you and your children with the huge transition that many of us face.

Here are some FREE science activities and experiments to help you entertain, excite and educate your year 2 child! You’ll find reading comprehensions about harvest mice and crabs, find out how to grow a grass head pet while learning about seed germination, discover how to make plastic from milk and create a working wind turbine!

Our experiments are designed for children from 6 to 12, but this list of experiments is particularly perfect for year 2, P3 (Scotland) and 6-year-olds and 7-year-olds as they tie in with the relevant National Curriculum objectives and topics.

The reading comprehensions included here were designed to be read at A3 size, so text may appear too small when printed at A4. They work really well on a tablet or monitor, or you may need to print them on two pages of A4 if your printer allows. 

If you have any comments or questions about our free year 2 science experiments and reading comprehensions, please leave a comment for us. Or do you have any science homeschool ideas or general home educating ideas for 6- and 7-year-olds? We’d love to hear from you!

Find loads more science activities, puzzles and games in our award-winning monthly kids science magazine, Whizz Pop Bang!

Harvest mice reading comprehension

Read all about the smallest rodent in Europe, the tiny harvest mouse!
Find out how they are related to other rodents, how much they weigh, what they use their tails for, how they protect themselves from predators, where they build their nests and what their babies are called. 

This downloadable reading pack includes: 
– A reading spread about harvest mice for you to print or for your child to read on a tablet.
–  Reading comprehension question sheet and answer sheet

Topic links: Year 2 living things and habitats, P3 Biodiversity and interdependence


Seed germination: grow your own plant pet!

Grow grass pets to learn about what seeds need in order to grow.  Design and make your own grass head pets, then discover what plants need in order to grow!

You will need:
Soil or compost
2 tbsp. grass seed
Old nylon tights
Plant pot or bowl
Elastic bands
Googly eyes, felt or beads
Needle and thread or glue

Bonus activity: how to walk like a cat!

Find out what’s special about how cats walk.

Topic links: Year 2 plants and P3 biodiversity and interdependence


Make your own plastic

Explore making plastic from milk (casein plastic) in this fun free science experiment using household items.

You will need:
Milk
White wine vinegar
A sieve
Paper towels

Bonus activity: Try out a leak-proof bag

These activities are taken from Whizz Pop Bang’s Awesomely Amazing Science Club – download the entire pack here!

Topic links: Year 2 Materials and P3 Properties and uses of substances


Crabs reading comprehension

Read about the ultimate recyclers of the seas, crabs! Discover why these cool crustaceans have an exoskeleton, how they walk and more!

This downloadable reading pack includes: 
– A reading spread about crabs for you to print or for your child to read on a tablet.
–  Reading comprehension question sheet and answer sheet.

Topic links: Year 2 living things and habitats, P3 Biodiversity and interdependence

Make a wind turbine

Print, cut and craft a working wind turbine!

You will need:
Printable template (below)
A paper straw
A wooden skewer
A stapler and staples
A few beads that are large enough to thread onto the skewer
Sticky tack

Bonus activity: upside-down glass experiment

This activity is taken from Whizz Pop Bang’s Awesomely Amazing Science Club – download the entire pack here!


Are you home educating children in other year groups? Then you might find these posts helpful:
Free science activities for year 3 and P4
Free science activities for year 4 and P5
Free science activities for year 5 and P6
Free science activities for year 6 and P7


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Princess Leia hologram could soon be a reality!

Star Wars fans will remember the 3D hologram of Princess Leia projected by R2-D2. Now, British scientists have developed a way of making holograms that can be seen, heard and felt! Here’s a video of this new technology in action:

Have you been reading about holograms in Whizz Pop Bang: POLAR SCIENCE? Pretty amazing, aren’t they? Read more about this story in the Polar Science issue – on sale now!


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Dreaming of a green Christmas…

Are mountains of festive plastic tat making your Christmas feel a little less than magical? Being an eco-warrior, a super-parent AND Father Christmas can be exhausting stuff, so we’ve sought out some present ideas that bring more cheer and less guilt.

Looking for plastic-free gifts, ethical present ideas, green gifts and other ways to have a green Christmas and make a difference at his time of year? Keep scrolling…

JUNKO modelling kits

Junko junk modelling kits, from £9.99, www.planetjunko.com

Make junk into toys with this super-creative, eco-friendly toy! Each kit contains a variety of accessories (including wheels, paddle wheels, floats, rubber band drives and more) along with plenty of clip-on and magnetic fixings that can be combined to turn household junk into almost anything you can imagine.

Invented by a dad who wanted to avoid throwaway plastic toys, Junko is fully reusable and made from recycled plastic in England. Its system of clips, magnetic fixings and accessories take junk modelling up a notch, encouraging imaginative play, problem solving and serious FUN! 


Whizz Pop Bang subscription

Whizz Pop Bang subscription, from £20.99, www.whizzpopbang.com

Want to give the gift of science wonder every month of the year? A subscription to Whizz Pop Bang magazine sends science learning and fun rocketing through your letterbox, every single month, with no plastic tat in sight! ⠀

And as if that’s not enough…⠀
🌳 Printed with vegetable inks on paper from FSC/PEFC suppliers
🌳 Delivered in paper envelopes⠀
🌳 Advert-free⠀
🌳 Activities and experiments often reuse household items (like the content of your recycling box and shed!)⠀


Wyatt and Jack Junior

Parrot mini tote, £19, wyattandjackjunior.com

Wyatt and Jack create accessories from donated and abandoned inflatables on the Isle of Wight, and they’ve just launched a junior range!


Books!

They’re made of paper (find out more about FSC standards for paper production here) and they can inspire a love of learning, and sometimes some knowledge of the natural world, too. We’ve put together a list of our top science reads for kids here, if you fancy popping some science under the tree this year.


Origami animals kit

Origami animals kit, £6.99, ecovibe.co.uk

First up is an amazing shop dedicated to plastic-free gifts: EcoVibe. From craft kits to lunch bags, building blocks to origami kits, this website promises an easy conscience for all of Santa’s elves. It’s worth having a peek at their adult self-care range too – you might need some TLC after all that shopping!


Seedbom

Tiger Seedbom, £3.50, www.kidly.co.uk

Throw it and grow it with these easy-gardening seedboms (packed with native wildflower and herb seeds in peat-free compost). There’s even an accompanying books, There’s a Tiger in the Garden, if you’re buying for a younger child (age 4-7). We also love the Make a Pizza for the Birds kit – tasty treats for little tweeters!


Dino Snores sleepover

Dino Snores for Kids sleepover, £65 per person, www.nhm.ac.uk

Prefer dinosaurs to reindeer? If you’re looking for something that most definitely won’t get lost under the bed, the Natural History Museum’s dino-snores sleepovers offers a thrilling experience to wander the corridors of the pre-historic after dark. Explore a torch-lit trail, make a dinosaur t-shirt and watch a science show. That’s a present they certainly won’t forget!


Adopt an animal

Adopt a polar bear, from £3 per month, www.wwf.org.uk

Have your kids asked for a puppy for Christmas? How about a polar bear instead? The WWF offers a huge range of animals to ‘adopt’ for Christmas, without the extra hassle of walkies, litter trays and vet bills! From £3 a month, (or from a £36 one-off payment), your little animals will receive a fact pack and regular updates on how their animal is faring in the wild. Upgrade to £5 per month and they’ll get a soft toy of your chosen animal, too! Best of all, your well-earned money will be spent directly on helping the species.


Image: Shutterstock

Words: Nell O’Neill


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Looking for science Christmas present ideas for kids?

Are you looking for Christmas presents for your grandchildren? Or perhaps your children’s grandparents are asking for Christmas present ideas? Maybe you need science present ideas for your nieces and nephews, or for any other small science fans in your life?

If you’re looking for science kits for kids, we’ve got the perfect solution: Whizz Pop Bang science magazine for children is the gift that delivers science wonder through the letterbox every month! Packed with exciting activities, eye-opening facts, puzzles, jokes and more with features written by science experts, it’s the present that keeps on giving all year round!

But that’s not all… We’ve also launched a lab-load of extra goodies this year, perfect for popping under the tree to inspire scientists-in-training to start experimenting! Science presents for kids are right here…

Grandchildren, godchildren, nieces and nephews can be tricky to buy for. Read our handy science gift guide and give the gift of curiosity this year!


Under £10: Science stocking fillers

Choose from dozens of back issues in our shop, £3.99 each

An issue of Whizz Pop Bang: £3.99


The Whizz Pop Bang Science Joke Book: £6.99


Whizz Pop Bang bundle (three issues): £9.99


Under £15: A pipette of treats

Y’s Wonder Club Pack (a large science scrapbook, 70 stickers and an enamel pin badge): £11.99


Whizz Pop Bang binder: £14.99


Around £20: A beaker of curiosity

Whizz Pop Bang lab coat: £19.99


6 monthly subscription to Whizz Pop Bang magazine: £20.99


Whizz Pop Bang bundle (three issues)
PLUS Y’s Wonder Club Pack (a large science scrapbook, 70 stickers and an enamel pin badge)
TOTAL: £21.98


Around £30: A flask of facts and fun

6 monthly subscription to Whizz Pop Bang magazine
PLUS The Whizz Pop Bang Science Joke Book
TOTAL: £27.98


Around £50: An explosion of inspiration!

6 monthly subscription to Whizz Pop Bang magazine
PLUS Whizz Pop Bang lab coat
PLUS The Whizz Pop Bang Science Joke Book
TOTAL: £47.97



12 monthly subscription to Whizz Pop Bang magazine
PLUS Y’s Wonder Club Pack (a large science scrapbook, 70 stickers and an enamel pin badge)
TOTAL: £51.98


Around £75: A lab-load of science!

12 monthly subscription to Whizz Pop Bang magazine
PLUS Whizz Pop Bang binder
PLUS Whizz Pop Bang lab coat
TOTAL: £74.97


The works!

12 monthly subscription to Whizz Pop Bang magazine
PLUS Y’s Wonder Club Pack (a large science scrapbook, 70 stickers and an enamel pin badge)
PLUS Whizz Pop Bang binder
PLUS Whizz Pop Bang lab coat
PLUS The Whizz Pop Bang Science Joke Book
TOTAL: £93.95


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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


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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


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