~~ Dept of Meteorology - University of Reading

Outreach Activities

I enjoy communicating science to others as a STEM ambassador, and have taken part in many different outreach activities. There is a reasonably up-to-date list below.

Activities within the University of Reading:

  • U3A visit, August 2014. I gave a presentation on my research on 'aircraft climate impact' to visiting groups from the University of the Third Age (Maidenhead and Wokingham branches).
  • Year 9/10 Met Day, May 2014. I ran the density current experiment in the Fluids Lab for the students. I have developed additional resources for this - a worksheet to allow the students to work through the experiment and perform some calculations. Also, to link the laboratory experiment to the real world, I use videos of real-life density currents, namely a dust storm over Phoenix, and also animations of sea-breezes from LIDAR.
  • Year 9/10 Met Day, May 2012, 2013. Kirsty Hanley and I ran the Richardson forecast factory for the students, with a re-designed worksheet.
  • Work Experience Day, February 2012, 2013, 2014. I ran a density current experiment for our work experience students.
  • Mathematics Day, December 2011, 2012, July 2013. I co-ran a Richardson forecast factory for year 12 students, for a total of approximately 60 students. I have developed a new, simplified worksheet for the students to use in this experiment. The activity was developed by members of the Meteorology Department at Reading (add links to materials.)
  • National Science and Engineering Week, March 2011. I ran the density current experiment for school groups.
  • University Public Open Evening, November 2010. Demonstrated the density current tank and rotating tank to members of the public.


  • The Holt School Wokingham, March 2014. Careers fair for whole school. We took hand-held instruments and the lightning detector.
  • Leighton Park School, December 2012. Ran a Climate change activity for sixth-form students.
  • Career's day at Kendrick Girl's school, Reading, November 2011. A team from the Met Department gave an interactive session on careers in meteorology, including a demonstration with the gravity wave tank.
  • Winnersh Primary School, March 2011. With Rob Thompson. We gave a talk on climate change to year 5.
  • Winnersh Primary School, March 2010. A team of four of us from the department spent a morning there. I designed an activity around tornadoes, including making a tornado in a bottle. The other activities were clouds, rainbows and climate change.
  • Careers fair, Loddon Valley Leisure Centre, for Wokingham schools.

Science Fairs and Festivals:

  • British Science Festival, British Science Association, September 2014 at the University of Birmingham. I successfully applied to run a stand on 'weather observing' in the hands-on section of the Young People's Programme of the Festival. I co-ordinated the science content and equipment for the stand, as well as dealing with the organisation and volunteers. The science content developed for this event was based around the lightning detector, and an infra-red camera, showing how we monitor and measure the weather from both the ground and from space.
  • Cheltenham Science Festival, 2010 and 2011. We demonstrated various activities including the density current, climate change roulette, a snowflake tank and our hand-held instruments.
  • British Association Festival of Science, 2009. Co-organised an activity for 14-16 year olds, designing a station in Antarctica.
  • British Association Festival of Science, 2008. Co-organised an activity for A-level students, learning about doing science in polar regions .

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