Future chemists and engineers donned their lab coats and safety googles when they spent a day experiencing the world of work for the first time.
Twenty-seven children from Redwood Primary School, in Sinfin, were invited to take a part in a series of activities – which included building their own rockets – at Lubrizol, in Hazelwood.
The youngsters, all from year five, were given a tour of the site before interviewing three members of Lubrizol staff in America, via video call.
They also conducted laboratory experiments which included scanning their hands with a 3D scanner and learning about sublimation by turning a solid object into a gas.
But the most popular element of the day came when students were invited to build a pop rocket from an empty film canister to find out what happens when there is a build-up of gas.
Ten-year-old Lisa Bird said: “The pop rocket was the best bit because it was fun to watch and I really enjoyed turning carbon dioxide into a gas.
“I would really like to work at Lubrizol now and so would my friend. We would all like to do more experiments at school after today. I’m on the school council so I am going to suggest it.”
The visit was part of the city council's Just Imagine Working Here scheme, which Lubrizol has been part of since the project’s inception four years ago.
Teacher Tim Priestley said: “Children don’t always understand why it’s important to work hard at school, so visits like this put that hard work into context so they understand what they are working towards.
“During the visit the children were asked who would like to be a chemist when they leave school and all but one put their hands up, which pleased me greatly.
“This was a fantastic opportunity to introduce our pupils to brilliant role models and show them how exciting the world of work can be.”
Quality systems manager at Lubrizol, Claire Hollingshurst, said: "This is a brilliant initiative which is designed to inspire a whole new generation of school pupils; allowing them to see the world of work, possibly for the first time, and encouraging them to study hard and raise their aspirations.
“Lubrizol does a lot of work with universities and colleges, with students who have already chosen a career path. But working with this age group allows us to sow the seeds for a science or engineering career.
“Children of this age are always enthusiastic, and we could see them soaking up the information we delivered. A lot of them asked how to get jobs here at the end of the session, so we look forward to welcoming them back again one day.”
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