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New Phiz Lab opens

Last week, Churchdown Village Junior School officially opened its new Phiz Lab – a specialist classroom for science to encourage practical, student-led investigations, which will sit at the heart of the Gloucestershire North East Ogden Partnership.

The new facilities were unveiled at a special opening where students from Churchdown Village Junior School and local secondary schools conducted the first physics experiments in the new Phiz Lab. There were 12 science stalls set up with students carrying out a variety of physics experiments in lab coats and goggles.

The evening also included two live Skype talks and Q&As with US-based science experts from Laser Interferomete Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) and CERN – the European Organisation for Nuclear Research. Representatives from both groups explained their ground-breaking work and answered questions from students, parents and teachers who were thrilled to learn about science in action in these real-world international link-ups.

The Phiz Lab means that teachers in the Gloucester area will now have a dedicated space to teach a range of practical science topics, giving students the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the exciting world of physics.

Maggie Boyd is a teacher at Churchdown Village Junior School and co-ordinator for the Gloucestershire North East Primary Partnership: “Three years ago, I asked my staff for a dream wish list for science. We jokingly said that having a separate lab would make teaching science so much easier, but at the time nobody thought it could really happen. Thanks to The Ogden Trust, however, we now have a fully equipped, high tech primary lab with everything we need for every lesson easily to hand. It is great to see children being self-sufficient with finding the equipment they need for experiments they design themselves. It's also a great base for our thriving science club and has made it much easier to host shared events with other local schools.”