Friday, 25 October 2013


Esher College hosted a real Celebration of student’s work once again on 22 October. The annual Nuffield Research Placement Scheme’s display and celebration of the summer projects was held for the last time with all 46 students researchers talking about their placements to some 100 visitors. The Vice-Chair of Surrey County Council attended along with special guest Mark Havler from Surrey Wildlife Trust, who spoke about the importance of students participating in fieldwork and collecting data. Surrey Wildlife Trust had certainly benefitted over the years from their work and hopefully this can continue. Mark has personally supervised many students over the years – this year, 6 students completed project with his help and support. SATRO Patron Jon Tickle expressed his admiration for the standard of work achieved by the students which, he said, was of an even higher standard than last year! Many students are contributing to publications through their supervisors, who have said that they prefer a month of a Nuffield students to a year’s work from an undergraduate!

Michael Overy from Epsom and Ewell High School, and Hannah Banks from Tiffin Girls School were presented with a certificate for best project for 2013. All students received the Gold CREST Award!

Building Strong Foundations

An opportunity to build stronger links with their local school was offered to parents at St Peter’s RC Primary School when SATRO delivered a Mega-Structures Challenge on 21st October. An novel evening activity it brought together parents and their children in an exciting construction workshop, in which mixed teams had to design and build a shelter large enough to accommodate at least 3 of the teams members. The challenge provided a unique opportunity for children – and their parents – to develop skills in communication, planning, design and teamwork. 11 teams involving some 65 participants created different shaped structures made out of rolled paper sticks. The event was supported by a volunteer from Atkins Global plc, Peter Walbridge, who gave a short introduction on his job as a civil engineer. Great fun was had by all and the teachers were delighted with the outcomes and overall success of the evening. Many positive comments were received at the end of the workshop:

”It was fun way of learning about engineering and also we all learnt to work as a team” - parent
“It made me want to become an engineer” – pupil

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Brightening the Science Curriculum

Year 1 and Year 2 pupils at Heather Ridge Infant School had an illuminating day of science, in which simple circuits were incorporated in lighthouse models and different objects were tested for their floating or sinking properties. The pupils were introduced to new concepts which developed their creative thinking, fault-finding and practical skills. The children learnt a lot during the day and the teachers were pleased with the knowledge and enthusiasm of the SATRO team.

This event was funded through the generous support of Cllr David Ivison.

Maths Wizards Take Shape at The Duke of Kent School

Three days of Fun Maths took place at the Duke of Kent School in Ewhurst.  On the first two days classes from Years 4 through to Year 10 undertook the challenge to complete as many puzzles as possible within a time limit.  The third day was an Open Day for the school so parents and children combined their talents to solve the mathematical tasks.  All sessions were well received and presented an opportunity for the participants to test their knowledge and develop new skills. 

Comments included: “Now I really like maths thanks to you”;  “It made me think outside the box… it was a good challenge”;  “It was very good to do some maths with my son and enjoy it!”

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Teams ready to go on the Cisco Red Button Challenge

Friday 18 October - teams from nine schools were briefed on the challenge at Cisco’s offices at Bedfont Lakes. They will spend the next five months working with Cisco mentors on their apps before returning to have them judged – generous prizes await the winners. Derek Nottingham spoke about the importance of STEM and arts subjects. Pete Rai, also from Cisco, encouraged teams to include some programming. Three teams unable to attend will be briefed this week and meet their mentors after half term.

Friday, 11 October 2013


SATRO’s engineering volunteers were out in full force when they visited Reigate Priory Junior School. All 660 pupils experienced a practical, informative workshop which provided them with an opportunity to investigate new skills. Ranging from “Is packaging fit for purpose?” to “How does an electric circuit works?”, the children learnt lots of new ideas from the experts.

Teachers were delighted with the activities: “[pupils] had to use investigative skills – a very good challenge”; “What a fantastic day! Both children and teacher learnt lots whilst having fun

Children’s comments included: “It has improved my confidence about science” “it has inspired me to do more at home” “I learnt to keep on trying if it does not work first time

This two day event was kindly sponsored by Councillor Peter Lambell.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Pole Position for SATRO!

We were delighted to be joined by over 20 innovators and entrepreneurs this morning at a Business Breakfast hosted by Mclaren at their stunning headquarters in Woking.

With the support of David Munro, Chair of Surrey County Council, SATRO presented our work to a dynamic and enthusiastic audience. We were all then treated to a tour of the historic championship cars and trophies. Thanks to all who took part – next stop, Monaco!