Whizz Pop Bang Blog
four puppies playing

Whizz Pop Bang science magazine – virtual dog breeding game explained

Mini scientist Poppy explains how to play the virtual breeding game in the Purr-fect pets issue of Whizz Pop Bang science magazine.

Experiment with breeding different dogs together and see what colour the puppies are! Each dog has two copies of the coat colour gene. The black coat gene (B) is dominant and the brown coat gene (b) is recessive. This means that only puppies with bb genes will be brown, and all those with one or two B genes will be black.

What you do:

  1. Cut out the cards on page 19
  2. Choose a male dog and a female dog for breeding and lay their cards out on a table with the names facing up (you should have four cards)
  3. Randomly choose one card for each dog and record the puppy’s genes and coat colour in the table below
  4. Each litter produces four puppies so return the cards to the table, mix them up and repeat step 3 until you have recorded the genes and coat colours of four puppies
  5. Keep choosing different dogs to breed to see what colour their puppies will be

You should find:
Even though Daisy and Max are black, they can still produce brown puppies together, but Buddy and Bella will never produce brown puppies, even if they’re bred with a brown dog. Only Molly with Rocky will produce all brown puppies. Brown puppies are rarer than black so they cost more. This is why pet breeders often breed closely related animals with rare features together.

To play this game, buy the Purr-fect Pets issue of Whizz Pop Bang magazine from our online shop for just £3.75 with free UK delivery.

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WIN Paper Pets book with 10 pets to pop out and make!

WIN paper pets book

Today is National Pet day! The purr-fect day to launch our online competition to win one of four Paper Pets books, with 10 cute pets and their accessories to pop out and make. Each pet has a name, a house (or a perch for the parrot!) toys and even some food.

To enter this competition you’ll need your Purr-fect Pets issue of Whizz Pop Bang handy. Have you read about Charles Darwin’s pets yet? Tell us which of these animals he kept in the comment box below 👇🏽

Which pets did Charles Darwin keep?

a) newts

b) stick insects

c) pigeons

Enter by midnight on 30th April. Good luck!

Thanks to Quarto Kids for supplying four Paper Pets books for this Whizz Pop Bang competition.

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dinosaur-tracks-scotland

How does it feel to find a giant dino footprint? We talk to paleontologist Steve Brusatte to find out!

Did you hear about the huge dinosaur footprints discovered on the Scottish coast this week? We ask Steve Brusatte some very important questions about this awesome discovery…

Paleontologist Dr Steve Brusatte at the dinosaur footprint site on the Isle of Skye

Paleontologist Dr Steve Brusatte at the dinosaur footprint site on the Isle of Skye 

We’re lucky to have Steve on the Whizz Pop Bang boffin team (our panel of expert scientists who advise us on the latest scientific developments), so we asked him a few questions about the latest dinosaur print to be discovered on the Isle of Skye.

1. Are there words to describe just how exciting it feels to discover these tracks?

 It was a fantabulotastic feeling. I think that’s the best way I can try to put it into words! Because the moment of discovery is magical. When you find something that no human has ever seen before, something from hundreds of millions of years ago. It was actually one of my students who discovered these tracks. Davide Foffa is his name; he’s a PhD student, from Italy. I was very proud that my student found something so amazing!
davide foffa at footprint site

Davide Foffa, one of my students who actually discovered these tracks

2. Do you have a special dino discovery high five with your team?!
No! Although maybe I should invent one. Any ideas?
3.  If people want to go and visit the Isle of Skye can they see the foot print? Can they put their own foot inside the print?
Yes they can, although the tracks are located at a protected site, so they can’t be tampered with. If you go and see them, be careful not to damage them. They’ve lasted for 170 million years and we want them to last for a long time more. It is an amazing thing to put your foot inside a dinosaur track. It gives you a sense of just how big these dinosaurs were! The biggest tracks are 70 centimeters across, so about the size of a car tyre!

Want to know more about discovering dinosaurs? Order the Fossil Frenzy issue of Whizz Pop Bang science magazine and read all about how to find a dinosaur with Steve Brusatte! Visit our online shop to buy this issue for just £3.75 (free UK postage).

Whizz Pop Bang science magazine for kids Fossil Frenzy cover
Whizz Pop Bang science magazine Issue 14 dinosaur hunting with paleontologist Steve Brusatte

Whizz Pop Bang science magazine issue 14: Fossil Frenzy

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Whizz POp Bang science magazine for kids edible poo_5

Blurghhh it’s edible poo!

We’ve been inundated with your photos of edible poo!!!! The PLOP-TASTIC poo issue has been the most popular issue of Whizz Pop Bang, proving (as if any parent or teacher needed proof) that kids really do love talking about poo!

WARNING! DO NOT look at these photos whilst eating, or if you’re easily offended by the sight of very realistic poo on a plate…

Intrigued about the ingredients for edible poo? Buy the PLOP-TASTIC poo issue of Whizz Pop Bang science magazine from our back issues shop and let the poo-themed fun begin!

Whizz Pop Bang science magazine poo issue

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Michael Rosen

Celebrating World Poetry Day 2018 with Michael Rosen’s science poems!

‘Some Thoughts about Eggs: Changes 3’ from ‘Centrally Heated Knickers’ by Michael Rosen (©Michael Rosen, 2000)

‘Some Thoughts about Eggs: Changes 3’ from ‘Centrally Heated Knickers’ by Michael Rosen (©Michael Rosen, 2000)

What is World Poetry Day?

World Poetry Day is a time to appreciate and support poets and poetry around the world. It is held on March 21 each year and is an initiative of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Many people around the world celebrate World Poetry Day on or around March 21 each year. Government agencies, educators, community groups and individuals get involved in promoting or participating in the day. World Poetry Day is an opportunity for children to be introduced to poetry in classrooms. It is a time when classrooms are busy with lessons related to poetry, in which students examine poets and learn about different types of poetry.

Who is Michael Rosen?

Michael Rosen

Michael Rosen is a poet, a very funny poet who has been writing poems about all sorts of things for as long as we can remember (that’s at least 35 years!). His poems are really quirky, always amusing and particularly good at taking a sideways look at everyday things in life. This poem about eggs is taken from ‘Centrally Heated Knickers’ a book of poems about science and technology. You can follow Michael on Twitter and find out what he’s up to. He does school visits too!

Centrally heated knickers by Michael Rosen

Discover the weird and wonderful world of martians, woolly saucepans and centrally heated knickers in 100 poems about science and technology from the delightfully irreverent, Michael Rosen.

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Stephen Hawking celebrates 50th year as Cambridge fellow

Stephen Hawking: a super scientist, spaceman and a Dad

Stephen Hawking floating in a zero-gravity jet undertaking parabolic dips to simulate space conditions over the Atlantic.

Stephen Hawking floating in a zero-gravity jet undertaking parabolic dips to simulate space conditions over the Atlantic

Who was Stephen Hawking, and why was he famous? As budding scientists themselves, your children are bound to ask questions about the man in the wheelchair with the strange voice. And rightly so, for this is a man to be talked about and remembered for so many ground-breaking discoveries in science.

On the way to school yesterday morning, as we heard the news of Stephen Hawking’s death, my children asked why he died. This is a perfectly reasonable question, and one I answered with suggestions as I didn’t know exactly why he had died. We listened to the news reader and tried to make sense of a man who defied the doctors’ words and went on to live for an ‘extra’ 53 years.

“Although there was a cloud hanging over my future, I found, to my surprise, that I was enjoying life in the present more than before. I began to make progress with my research,” Stephen said.

 

“My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all.”

 

Alok Jha explains why black holes are doomed to shrink into nothingness then explode with the energy of a million nuclear bombs, and rewinds to the big bang and the origin of the universe. From The Guardian.

A brief timeline of Stephen’s life and career

  • Stephen Hawking is a British theoretical physicist, he was born on January the 8th, 1942.
  • Hawking has made many important contributions to the fields of cosmology and quantum gravity. He is also well known for his bestselling book ‘A Brief History of Time’.
  • Helped by the success of his book ‘A Brief History of Time’, Hawking has released other books aimed at making his work accessible to a wide range of people, these include ‘The Universe in a Nutshell’, ‘A Briefer History of Time’ and ‘George’s Secret Key to the Universe’, a children’s book with a strong focus on science.
  • Hawking has worked extensively on the subject of black holes, providing theories for their behaviour, including the idea that they emit radiation.
  • Hawking suffers from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a type of motor neuron disease that has left him almost completely paralysed.
  • Some of the awards Hawking has received for his work include the 1979 Albert Einstein Medal, the Order of the British Empire (Commander) in 1982 and the 1988 Wolf Prize in Physics.

Famous Stephen Hawking quotes include:

  • “There ought to be something very special about the boundary conditions of the universe and what can be more special than that there is no boundary?”
  • “I don’t believe that the ultimate theory will come by steady work along existing lines. We need something new. We can’t predict what that will be or when we will find it because if we knew that, we would have found it already!”
  • “For millions of years, mankind lived just like the animals. Then something happened which unleashed the power of our imagination. We learned to talk and we learned to listen.”
  • “It is a waste of time to be angry about my disability. One has to get on with life and I haven’t done badly. People won’t have time for you if you are always angry or complaining.”
  • “I don’t think the human race will survive the next thousand years, unless we spread into space. There are too many accidents that can befall life on a single planet. But I’m an optimist. We will reach out to the stars.”

What was it like having Stephen Hawking as your Dad?

Lucy Hawking describes the moment her famous scientist father, Doctor Stephen Hawking, was asked by a child – what happens if you fall into a black hole?

“As a child you could ask any question you wanted – and get a reply,” she said.

Lucy Hawking talking about her father Stephen Hawking

Lucy Hawking talking about her father Stephen Hawking, and where the idea for a children’s story book originated from

One of the many books written by Lucy and Stephen Hawking:

George’s pet pig breaks through the fence into the garden next door – introducing him to his new neighbours: the scientist, Eric, his daughter, Annie, and a super-intelligent computer called Cosmos. And from that moment George’s life will never be the same again, for Cosmos can open a portal to any point in outer space . . .

Written by science educator Lucy Hawking and her father – the most famous scientist in the world – and illustrated by Garry Parsons, George’s Secret Key to the Universe will take you on a rollercoaster ride through space to discover the mysteries of our universe.

Stephen Hawking quotes your kids will like…

On the universe: “It would not be much of a universe if it wasn’t home to the people you love.”

 On persistence: “However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don’t just give up.” – at an Oxford University Union speech in 2016.

On curiosity: “So remember, look at the stars and not at your feet.” – at the Sydney Opera House in 2015.

 On space: “May you keep flying like superman in microgravity.” – to NASA astronauts in 2014.

Stephen Hawking celebrates 50th year as Cambridge fellow

Photo credit: Dan White/Gonville & Caius/PA Wire

 

 

‘Look up at the stars and not down at your feet. However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at.’ Stephen Hawking’s words are an inspiration to us all regardless of our age, abilities or dreams.

Stephen Hawking, 1942- 2018

 

 

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Win this icon

WIN! A signed copy of The Matilda Effect by Ellie Irving

The Matilda Effect three copies

We’ve got three signed copies of The Matilda Effect to giveaway!

Matilda loves science and inventing. Her heroes are Marie Curie, Leonardo da Vinci and Thomas Edison, and one day she wants to be a famous inventor herself. So when she doesn’t win the school science fair, she’s devastated – especially as the judges didn’t believe she’d come up with her entry on her own. Because she’s a girl…

To enter this competition tell us what Marie Curie helped to develop, was it…
a) x-ray
b) blu-ray
c) sting ray antivenom

Answer below in the comment box 👇🏽 by midnight on 31st March 2018.

 

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British Science Week 2018

How to celebrate British Science Week 2018!

British Science Week is a ten-day celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths for kids, families and schools everywhere. Get inspired and join millions of mini scientists experimenting and having fun learning about the awesome world of science.

This year British Science week is 9th to 18th March, so it’s time to get organized with your science activities!

We’ve got loads of ideas to bring science week to life in your school, so let’s get started. You will need your Whizz Pop Bang magazines (not a subscriber? Order back issues here at £3.75 per mag including delivery) and access to a colour photocopier.

Whizz Pop Bang scrapbook

Whizz Pop Bang share homework sheet

This idea came from primary science teachers Kathryn Horan and Toby Tyler. Every week a couple of the children in the class take home a Whizz Pop Bang magazine to share with their families.

For this you will need a scrapbook and a plastic wallet for each magazine. Prepare an instruction sheet to go with each one:

Welcome to our Whizz Pop Bang scrapbook!

There are no specific rules about what you should do with the magazine, you could…

  • Write about what you found particularly interesting
  • Draw or stick in photos of any experiments you did
  • Write in any additional research you have done
  • Write a review of the magazine
  • Read it together with older or younger siblings
  • Try out some of the experiments
  • Enter any competitions
  • Tweet what you have done to the magazine’s Twitter account, @whizzpopbangmag
  • Write and send a letter in to the letters page
  • Carry out some more research around the topics in the magazines

Whatever you do, we’d love to hear about it at school, so be sure to let us know or add something into the scrapbook. Have fun!

 

Inspirational scientists posters

Whizz Pop Bang science magazine for kids Ibn al Haytham

Cover the classroom in posters of inspirational, sensational scientists! In every issue of Whizz Pop Bang there’s a double-page spread focusing on famous scientists who made history with their discoveries and inventions. Photocopy the spreads and pin up to inspire your pupils!

 

Interview with a real scientist…

Whizz Pop Bang interview with a nanotechnologist

Find out what real scientists do in their everyday jobs on our interview pages. We’ve interviewed over 30 scientists ready to inspire girls and boys to be our scientists of the future! To buy a back issue visit our back issues shop.

Issue 1: Becky Smith, Chocolate scientist

Issue 2: Karen Ladenheim, Robotics scientist, Stanford University

Issue 3: Lynn Whitfield, Bat ecologist

Issue 4: Dr Steve Brusatte, Palaeontologist, Edinburgh University

Issue 5: Rob Lambert, Antarctic explorer and polar scientist

Issue 6: Tim Peake, Astronaut

Issue 7: Susan Cheyne, Conservation biologist (orangutans)

Issue 8: Misha Lotto, young scientist, Blackawton Bees Project

Issue 9: Josie Campbell, Vet

Issue 10: Shane Cronin, Volcanologist (New Zealand)

Issue 11: Jennifer Andon, Entomologist

Issue 12: Dr Maddalena Bearsi, Marine biologist

Issue 13: Prof Robert Winston, Medical scientist, Imperial College

Issue 14: Sarah Shelley, Fossil hunter

Issue 15: Helen Czerski, Bubble scientist

Issue 16: Abbie Hutty, Mars Rover engineer

Issue 17: Lara Aknin, Psychology professor (gift-giving)

Issue 18: Emma Burke, Penguin aquarist

Issue 19: Ian Gilby, Primatologist, Tanzania

Issue 20: Caoimhe Doyle, Foley Artist, sound effect engineer

Issue 21: Amy Dejong, Food scientist, University of Wisconsin

Issue 22: Payton Barnwell, Nanotechnologist, Florida Polytechnic Uni

Issue 23: Dave Goulson, Bumblebee biologist

Issue 24: Huw James, Science adventurer

Issue 25: Alex Hildred, Maritime archaeologist

Issue 26: Cierra Martin, Seed guardian

Issue 27: Toby Gemmill, Orthopaedic vet

Issue 28: Dr Sheyna, Martian (sort of)

Issue 29: Richard Stammers, Visual effects artist

Issue 30: Andres Ruzo, Geothermal Scientist

Issue 31: Lisa Elser, Gem cutter

To buy a back issue (for just £3.75 inc delivery) visit our back issues shop.

10 Awesomely Amazing…

Whizz Pop Bang 10 Awesomely Amazing Unusual Harvests

Every issue of Whizz Pop Bang science magazine looks at 10 awesomely amazing things on that month’s topic. Looking at engineering as part of the year of engineering? Take a look at ENGINEERING EXTRAVAGANZA (issue 16) with 10 Awesomely Amazing bizarre buildings, including a toilet-shaped building in Korea! Studying the human body? Check out SPECTACULAR SKELETONS (issue 27) and the 10 Awesomely Amazing bionic body parts, from 3D printed prosthetic hands to ancient Egyptian artificial toes. Is your topic plants this term? Kids love reading about the 10 Awesomely Amazing harvests from around the world in our SUPER SEEDS (issue 26), did you know there are chillies that melt latex gloves?

 

Quiz Pop Bang

Whizz Pop Bang science quiz

All Whizz Pop Bang magazines are packed full of science puzzles and a quiz to test your pupil’s science knowledge. There are also word searches, jokes, riddles and brain teasers for every age and ability. Turn wet play into a festival of science fun and games!

Experiments!

There are hundreds of simple hands-on science experiments and activities in Whizz Pop Bang magazine, and for each one we outline what you need, what to do, and you will find making it ideal for primary school teachers who may not have a science background. Perfect for curious kids and teachers looking for simple science ideas! Check out our bulk discounts for schools here and celebrate British Science Week 2018 with a Whizz, Pop and a Bang!

 

GSS-logo-final-04

What is The Great Science Share?

Following on from British Science Week there are several events going on around the UK. Use these ideas for your Great Science Share; a national campaign to engage young people in sharing science with new audiences. 

PIONEERED IN MANCHESTER – MAKING A DIFFERENCE UK-WIDE

You can get involved as a School, STEM Educator, STEM Organisation and Business.

Features include:

The Great Science Teachmeet

The Business of Science Conference

The Great Science Share for Schools Campaign

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Whizz Pop Bang logo round

Whizz Pop Bang magazine competition to WIN a pack of eco straws!

Whizz Pop Bang Eco straw giveaway

Following on from our #LastStraw survey we’ve got some super cool eco straws to giveaway! Ditch the plastic – reusable and biodegradeable straws are the future!

The UK is easily the biggest user of plastic straws in Europe, with an estimated 8.5 billion thrown away each year, according to a study by Eunomia Research & Consulting. This compares with 4.8 billion in Germany, 3.2 billion in France, 2 billion in Italy and 1.1 billion in Denmark.

TO ENTER our giveaway, write the shocking number of plastic straws that are thrown away in the UK each year in the comment box below 👇🏽

Closing date is 10th March 2018. Thanks to Seraphina’s Kitchen, Little Cherry and Bambaw for supplying these awesome eco straws.

 

What are the alternatives to plastic straws?

We’ve rounded up some environmentally friendly choices of straw to have at home or to whip out of your bag next time you’re out and about!

Bamboo strawsBambaw_ecofriendly_alternatives_to_plastic_straws

These are reusable, biodegradable drinking straws, made from whole bamboo, which is an easy to grow, sustainable crop. These eco-friendly straws can be used in hot and cold drinks and they don’t taste of anything. Available from Bambaw in packs of 12, and every pack comes with a cleaning brush. Enter our giveaway to win a pack of Bambaw straws!

Metal strawsSenhai_metal_straws

Senhai sell a set of eight stainless steel metal straws (available with a bend for those who want an angle in their straws!). They come in different colours, with a two cleaning brushes in a cloth bag, and are dishwasher proof.

Glass strawsStrawGrace_ecofriendly_alternatives_to_plastic_straws

 

 

 

 

 

StrawGrace sell handmade, incredibly hardy glass straws that come in packs of five. These cool straws are BPA free, eco-friendly, dishwasher safe and shatterproof. Each packet comes with a year’s guarantee – this is the same glass that’s used in labs all over the world and in Pyrex dishes so it’s safe and strong.

Silicon straws

Seraphinas kitchen_ecofriendly_alternatives_to_plastic_straws

Seraphina’s Kitchen make reusable coloured straws from silicone in two different sizes; one for juices and a larger one for smoothies. They’re all BPA free, lead and phthalates free and you can clean them with the brush that comes with each pack, or put them in the dishwasher. Enter our giveaway to win a pack of Seraphina’s silicone straws!

Paper straws

little cherry paper straws

If you’re after colourful fun paper straws for your child’s party check out Little Cherry Eco Party Supplies, so many styles, designs and colours to choose from! This is most definitely your one-stop shop for all things party ware, get your party rocking eco style with all their environmentally-friendly tableware. Enter our giveaway to win a pack of Little Cherry paper straws!

 

Vegware PLA Straws

vegware-straws

How about a bioplastic alternative?  Vegware PLA Straws are made from corn that would otherwise go to waste. Its proper name is polylactic acid (PLA) and it’s used by Vegware to manufacture drinking straws, as well as other utensils and coffee cups. While plastic straws take between 100 and 1,000 years to break down in landfill, conventional enzyme action is enough to decompose PLA straws in under 12 weeks, so they can go in your bin with the rest of your food waste.

TO ENTER our giveaway, write the shocking number of plastic straws that are thrown away in the UK each year in the comment box below 👇🏽

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little miss inventor

Little Miss Inventor Challenge!

LittleMissInventorChallenge

Eeek! Much excitement here in the office today, as we’ve just been told about this awesome competition for our younger fans…

A competition is being held to celebrate the launch of Little Miss Inventor and it’s offering children the chance to have their invention immortalised in the Mr. Men and Little Miss series! How cool would that be?!? 😎

The newest addition to the classic series, Little Miss Inventor uses her brainpower and creativity to think up inventions to help her friends. The competition’s winning invention will be drawn into an upcoming Mr. Men Little Miss Book. A shortlist of five inventions will also be displayed at the launch of Little Miss Inventor at the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester on March 24th.

To enter, fans aged 3-7 just need to visit the website mentioned in the picture, download the drawing sheet and come up with an invention to help Mr. Bump avoid accidents. Once they have drawn and labelled their invention it just needs to be scanned or photographed and uploaded to the dedicated website.

The competition is open between 29th January and 25th February 2018, and entries will be evaluated based on imagination, usefulness and creativity.

The competition is run in partnership with Little Inventors, an organisation dedicated to helping bring the ideas of children to life.

So, come on! Get your thinking caps on and get inventing!!

😀😀

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