Bulletin 210 complete

1 Editorial

Science Sux – An article about the public perception of science and science teaching and what we can do to improve matters.

2 News & comment

SSAC’s vision for science; Additional finding from Scottish Executive; Stuart Farmer’s study of the resourcing of physics departments.

3 Safety responsibilities and management

Safety in practical classes should be left to the experts to manage.

3-5 Wood dust and health surveillance

An explanation of health surveillance (what it is and when it is required) relating to staff being exposed to dust from woodworking.

6 Flicker and photo sensitive epilepsy

A small section of the population is susceptible to epileptic fits being brought on by flickering lights. Some control measures are suggested.

7-10 Colour mixing

Demonstrations of colour mixing can be vastly improved by replacing traditional illumination with new powerful LEDs called lumileds.

10 Auroral displays

After recent impressive aurora displays, we offer some tips to observe the next one.

11-12 Blue-bottle redox reactions

Some lower hazard variations of this classic demonstration that do not require corrosive sodium hydroxide.

Erratum – In Table 1 in the ‘small scale’ column, the volume of 0.1M copper)II) sulphate used should read 3 cm3 and not 12 cm3

12 Magical mushrooms

How to grow oyster mushrooms in the classroom

13 Index to Bulletins  201-210

16 Trade News

Soda lime; Microwave & UHF apparatus; Film graticule strip; Pestles; Freshford gas regulator servicing; Electronic projects from Rapid; Visual accelerometer.

Bulletin 211 complete

1 & 12 Editorial

Educational organisation, a menagerial (sic) approach

2-5 Safety guidance on radioactivity

SSERC has written a set of papers on different aspects of health and safety guidance regarding working with radioactive materials.

6 Recirculatory fume cupboards

An overview of recirculatory fume cupboards and their effectiveness.

8 SCOTS Online

Scottish Chemistry Online Teachers’ Service (Scots website) is launched

8 Gas Cartridge air rifles

A change in legislation and how to adapt.

9 Fixed wiring colours have changed

A guide to the change of colours in wiring of electrical appliances and how classrooms might be affected.


An introduction to the Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations (2002)

10 Microbiology & biotechnology at levels E & F

Revision of the guidelines and some ideas for activities that can enhance the teaching of this in the classroom.

12 Safety

Enzyme investigation using catalase; Socket outlet testers

Bulletin 212 complete

1 Editorial

It’s a’ geek tae me! – A call for more plain English in technical writing.

2 Safety: Accident with a pinhole Camera

Accident with an S1 girl using a pinhole camera and a candle. What went wrong and how to prevent it.

3: Safety: Hero’s engine explosion

A report on an explosion of a glass Hero’s engine.

3 Safety: Griffin paper electrophoresis kit

a trial of this apparatus which turns out to have dangerous , unshrouded sockets.

4 Chemistry Summer School

Review of the successful Chemistry Summer School at Edinburgh University.

5 ISE 5-14 – Planning Spreadsheet

A planning spreadsheet to help busy teachers. Available for download from the SSERC website.

6-8 Chemistry: Crystal growth and Liesegang rings

A look at this fascinating area of chemistry with some tips and tricks for getting the best results.

8 Physics: S1/S2 electronics

A review of the MFA & JJM Angus Board

9-10 Physics: Sodium absorption spectrum with a while lumiled LED source

The D lines of the sodium absorption spectrum can be displayed reliably and easily with the aid of a high-power, white-light LED source such that the demonstration can be carried out in daylight.

11 Biology: Let’s Count

Using haemocytometers to count cells

12 SSERC AGM / Open courses

Bulletin 213 complete

A Risk Assessment Special

1 Essential Tools

A graphic showing some of the useful resources that will help.

2-6 Assessing Risks

A guide to the risk-assessment process

6 “Reasonably Practicable”

A definition and discussion of this important Health and Safety term.

7-8 Not proven

A discussion of a recent HSE prosecution after an accident in a chemistry lesson, in England.


Further information in these regulations affecting work with flammables as announced in Bulletin 2011.

9 Using computers safely

A summary of SSERC’s upcoming guidance.

10-12 Investigating compost formation

A description of procedures on which to base a series of investigations on biodegradation and compost formation.

12 Risk assessment for compost formation

An exemplar risk assessment using our recommended method.

An exemplar risk assessment using our recommended method.