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Y7 Maths trip to Oxford

Our 15 enthusiastic Year 7s really enjoyed the trip to Oxford on 12th July, with Year 8 having made the trip the previous week. Each group initially went to the History of Science Museum, where we saw one of the actual chalkboards written on by Albert Einstein to mathematically describe “Red Shift” and how the universe seems to be forever expanding. We then settled in to our workshop. This year we focused on Geometry and were lucky enough to hold some of the precious measuring tools (sextants, quadrants and gyrocompasses to name but a few) and how they were used at sea.

Each group then left the museum and in pairs used a quadrant to measure the angle between the floor and the top of the Sheldonian Theatre, designed by Sir Christopher Wren. With this information, together with a given length, we were able to return to the lecture theatre and draw a scale version of the tower. From this we were able to accurately suggest the height of the Sheldonian Tower to within 5cm, which isn’t too bad considering the age of the measuring tools and the method we used. Having spoken to our year sevens and eights, the general response was very positive and we will continue to run a similar trip next year.


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