Sheffield pupils aim to power the future in national competition final

Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.
Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.
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Bright sparks from a Sheffield school put their ingenuity to the test in the national final of a science competition.

Five pupils from Silverdale School in Ecclesall travelled to London as finalists in the Shell Bright Ideas Challenge.

Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.

Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.

Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon and Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas took on teams from 11 other schools at the Olympic Park, as they were challenged to imagine a creative solution for the cities of tomorrow.

The Sheffield pupils came up with the idea of curved solar dishes that could pivot to catch and concentrate sunlight. Their idea impressed the judges and although it did not win, they still secured £1,500 for their school to support science, technology, engineering and maths – the ‘Stem’ subjects.

The competition final took place on Friday at Make the Future London, a festival of ideas and innovation.

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Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.

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Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.

Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.

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Geography teacher Nef Papaspyrou said: “Our pupils were extremely excited about the opportunity of going to Make The Future London and being able to experience first hand some of the projects Shell has been developing to tackle future energy demands.

“On the day, pupils enjoyed taking part in a large variety of activities, with highlights including zorbing to produce energy, trips to outer space and the launch of the Eco-marathon.

“On the way back home, they told me how privileged they felt having taken part in the Bright Ideas Challenge and how much they cherished the experience, including the trip to London.”

Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.

Faye Armitage-Sherman, Finlay Blackwell, Beth English, Maya Gordon, Ivan Hamshaw-Thomas, from Silverdale School in Sheffield, take part in Shells new schools competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge, at the Olympic Park in London.

During their visit to the Olympic Park, the pupils were given a VIP experience and had the chance to see some of the world’s most innovative energy ideas brought to life through interactive experiences and hands-on experiments.

Highlights included live shows from the Science Museum, coding workshops and a football challenge hosted by Brazilian football legend Pele on a pitch that generates power from footsteps.

They were also front row spectators at Shell Eco-marathon, the world’s longest-running student competition featuring efficient cars of the future.