South Downs Sci­en­tist

We are all sci­en­tists from the day we are born...

Sussex Life - - Promotion -

If you visit Dorset House School in Bury, near Pul­bor­ough, you will no doubt meet Paul Keane in his lab and it is likely that he will share these thoughts with you. Paul has been Head of Science at this co-ed­u­ca­tional prep school for more than 25 years and his in­fec­tious en­thu­si­asm for his sub­ject is as strong as ever.

Whether teach­ing com­plex chem­i­cal equa­tions to Year 8 pupils or pond dip­ping with younger chil­dren, Paul is con­stantly ask­ing ques­tions and lis­ten­ing to his pupils’ views - en­cour­ag­ing ev­ery­one to take part in shar­ing the joy of science.

Hav­ing stud­ied at univer­sity in Dublin, Paul worked and trav­elled ex­ten­sively in Africa where he was in­spired by the wide ar­ray of wildlife. Dur­ing his time there, he even man­aged to sur­vive be­ing top­pled out of a boat by a hippo!

It was on his re­turn to the UK that Paul de­cided to share his ex­cite­ment for science with the next gen­er­a­tion.

Dr Pa­trick Val­lence, the Govern­ment Chief Sci­en­tific Ad­vi­sor has re­cently stressed the fact that we live in an in­creas­ingly sci­en­tific world and that in all ar­eas - in­clud­ing Data Science, Robotics, AI or medicine, col­lab­o­ra­tion is vi­tal.

At Dorset House, this skill is honed in many ar­eas of the school as pupils, of­ten across dif­fer­ent Year groups, work to­gether - not just in aca­demic sub­jects but also in drama, mu­sic and sport. In the Science lab, lessons are brought to life through ex­per­i­ments. This gives those with a more prac­ti­cal ap­proach, the op­por­tu­nity to work with a part­ner who may be bet­ter at putting things down on pa­per.

At open morn­ings, prospec­tive pupils and par­ents are able to sam­ple some of the fun - in­clud­ing the ex­plod­ing jelly baby (it lets out a loud ‘scream’ as the glu­cose burns).

Science is not re­stricted to timetabled lessons though: the lab is avail­able for stu­dents at break times and the Year 8 pupils have ex­tra Science lessons in the evenings as their Com­mon En­trance ex­am­i­na­tions ap­proach.

This year, Dorset House pupils re­ceived com­men­da­tions from Brighton Col­lege, Hurst, Marl­bor­ough and Welling­ton for their ex­cel­lent exam re­sults. These in­cluded top marks in Physics and Chem­istry.

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