Thursday, 11 February 2016

The Daphnia group trip to the Royal Society Partnership Conference

By Y11 students - Sam Egan, Daniel Nuttall, Steven Simms and Hamdan Al-Zuhairi

Day 1

We left our school at 9:45AM. This was followed by a 15 minute bus drive to Liverpool Lime Street where we patiently waited for our train to Euston Station to arrive. We boarded the train at 10:45 AM where we took our seats and awaited our departure.  The train journey took 2 hours, meaning that we arrived in London at around 1PM. We eventually found our underground platform that would take us to the Natural History Museum. As we reached the top of the stairs we were immediately greeted by a large, Victorian building which towered over the structures surrounding it. This was the Natural History Museum.  

As we strolled through the main gates, myself and the rest of our group were overwhelmed by the prehistoric edifice. As we walked through the building’s wooden double doors, a large Diplodocus skeleton branched across the entire room. Over our 3-hour stay at the Museum we observed unique rocks and minerals such as amethyst and emerald, followed by rocks from both Mars and the Moon. We then ventured to the fossils exhibit where we were fascinated by shells and skeletons that had ages of up to 170,000,000 years old. This room consisted of objects such as prehistoric dinosaur fossils to a skeleton of an extinct Dodo Bird. After this we visited the rooms dedicated to Mammals. This consisted of small rodents such as raccoons to massive creatures such as Tigers and Blue Whales. We even had the chance to take a picture with renowned Scientist Charles Darwin. Unfortunately, the Dinosaur exhibit was closed due to reconstruction but we enjoyed our trip none the less.  

As soon as we left the museum we were back on the tube, searching for our overnight stay at Elephant and Castle. Our crowded train journey eventually ended and the group was back on the streets of London. After a ten minute walk we had arrived at our hostel. We dumped our bags in our rooms and swiftly headed down to get our dinner. After this, we headed back to our rooms where we went to sleep in preparation for the Royal Society conference the next day.

Day 2

We woke up at precisely 7AM in order to be packed and ready to go by 8AM. After a quick breakfast, we were back on the road, heading for the Royal Society Conference. After a long, compact train journey, the group arrived at Green Park Station, a walking distance from the Conference. Minutes from the Royal Society building, we had a perfect view of Buckingham Palace which mesmerized those who had never visited the Big Smoke before.

As the group entered the Royal society building we were astonished by the beauty and level of detail that went into creating this structure. A glistening chandelier hung over our heads and meticulous portraits of previous or current fellows of the Society where pinned to the walls surrounding us. People such as Professor Stephen Hawking who is alive today and others such as Robert Hooke (the first man to have a scientific journal published in 1665) are just a handful of names of those who were on those walls.We took our seats in the main dining room where we were introduced to the Royal society by the President of the organization, Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, along with 4 other fellows. After the hour-long session we went on to take part in 2 lectures. One of these lectures explained the history of the scientific journal and how the organization has evolved from having 1 journal is 1665 to over 22000 now. The 2nd lecture explained some of the once in a lifetime opportunities available when you have links to the Royal Society. It talked about how a number of people had the chance to visit the Amazon Jungle in Peru in order to collect scientific information on animals living there. After a 45 minute lunch break the presentations began. Other school projects ranged from investigating cosmic rays to building robots. Our thoughts and feelings before the presentation were a mix of excitement and nerves, however we overcame our fears and delivered the speech exactly as planned. After everyone had delivered their speeches we spent an hour explaining our project and finding out more about other schools’ plans during a poster session. 

After this we left the Royal Society building, grateful that the World-renowned association gave us the opportunity to visit their headquarters. We went on to take a quick walk down the road to visit both Downing Street and Buckingham Palace. We had the chance to take pictures in front of the Queen’s home and watch the Royal Guards Change shifts. We then meandered to Green Park station where we boarded the tube to return to Euston Station where our train back to Liverpool would leave in 2 hours at 18:40PM. Our group got a quick bite to eat before we headed to our platform where awaited our train’s arrival. The train took us back to Liverpool Lime Street by 21:00PM. We said goodbye to one another. It was the end of an incredible trip.

1 comment:

  1. What a fantastic Blog post and what a great experience for you all. It is so nice to see how you are stretching teh boundaries of school science!