NDNA is staging a mass fizzy rocket launch at nurseries across the UK for British Science Week.

Children all over the country will be counting down and seeing their home-made missiles whoosh into the sky in this simple activity on Tuesday 14 March.

This fun with vitamin tablets and their plastic tubes will have a serious purpose – to switch young minds on to science.

Pictured are children at Eureka! Nursery, Halifax, West Yorkshire, trying out the experiment ahead of British Science Week. This is the first time that British Science Week has focused on early years with a specific activity aimed at under fives.

NDNA picked out the activity as it is both exciting and easy to organise, costing only about £1, the cost of an own-brand pack of effervescent vitamin tablets.

Just fill 1/3 of the empty tube with water, drop a tablet in, put the lid on, stand it on its lid and stand well back. After a few seconds the top will pop off and the tube will shoot into the sky.

Purnima Tanuku OBE, Chief Executive of NDNA, said: “We’ve found that children love performing this experiment and learning about how carbon dioxide is released when the tablet reacts with the water, building up the air pressure until the tube bursts open.

“Nurseries can extend the fun by encouraging the children to decorate the tubes with their rocket designs and try out different temperatures of water and numbers of tablets.

“It’s just one of many experiments suitable for under 5s in NDNA’s Inspiring Your Little Scientists publication. A risk assessment and trial run should always be completed first.”

Mrs Tanuku continued: “Nurseries are uniquely placed to support children to discover science through play so they are engaged and motivated to learn and think critically for themselves.

“Nurseries can sign-up online to show their interest and be in with a chance to win a copy of NDNA’s ‘Inspiring your Little Scientists’ publication. NDNA is also encouraging nurseries across the UK to share their photos and videos of the experiment on social media, using the hashtag #NDNAMassBlastOff.”

Maria Rossini, Head of Education of the British Science Association (BSA) said: “Thanks to our collaboration with NDNA, this is the first year we have had a specific focus on Early Years groups in British Science Week.  

“We’re really excited to be coordinating a mass-participation flagship event of this scale with nurseries across the UK, and are looking forward to engaging children, parents and practitioners throughout the day and making science more accessible for Early Years.  

“NDNA has been a really valuable partner in helping us develop activities for our very first Early Years activity pack.  We can’t wait to see all the excitement generated when children launch their rockets!”

British Science Week, organised by the British Science Association, takes place between March 10 and 19. For more information from NDNA on British Science Week go to www.ndna.org.uk/britishscienceweek

About the British Science Association

The British Science Association (BSA) believes that science should be part of – rather than set apart from – society and culture, and is owned by the wider community. Our programmes encourage people of all ages and backgrounds to engage with science, become ambassadors for science, and ultimately to be empowered to challenge and influence British science - whether they work in science or not.
Established in 1831, the BSA is a registered charity that organises major initiatives across the UK, including British Science Week, the annual British Science Festival, regional and local events, the CREST Awards and other programmes for young people in schools and colleges. The BSA also organises specific activities for professional science communicators, including a specialist conference and training. For more information, please visit: www.britishscienceassociation.org
About British Science Week
British Science Week is a national celebration of the best of British science, technology, engineering and maths - featuring fascinating, entertaining and engaging events across the UK. To plan, register or attend an event, visit: www.britishscienceweek.org
British Science Week (10-19 March 2017) is organised by the British Science Association and supported by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, 3M and Yakult UK.