• iceberg
  • boy with flowers
  • checking water quality
  • planet eclipse
  • rangitoto trees
  • kids with test tubes
  • kids with earth
  • snowy mountains
  • Rainbow Clouds

    Refraction and diffraction of light through ice crystals in the clouds

  • Philippa On The Ice

    Philippa On The Ice Philippa Werry at an Antarctic research camp 2016

New Zealand Science Teacher

Learning in Science

Dr Bunhead all set for science festival

Brace yourself for some seriously fun science.

If the world’s biggest indoor cloud sounds interesting to you, you might want to head to Dunedin this July.

This year’s New Zealand International Science Festival is taking place from 5-13 July. Along with many fun and engaging science activities and events, the programme boasts shows by “Stunt scientist” Tom Pringle, otherwise known as Dr Bunhead, an energetic Edinburgh-based science educator.

Tom says he’ll be “joyriding through the world of science using an anarchic blend of wow-factor demonstrations, bringing audiences face-to-face with the silly, crazy, dirty, dangerous, and magnificent side of science.”

Along with the aforementioned indoor cloud, expect to see a record-setting spud bazooka, liquid-nitrogen-cooled stunt bananas, and chocolate-powered flamethrowers, together with “heaps of other science stuff that your teacher never did in school”.

Also planned are shows and workshops for kids, adults and school teachers alike, in addition to a special performance for a Pasifika audience that he is “very excited about”. 

“My shows are especially suitable for anyone who hates (or hated) science at school, and in each show I tease out some science explanations behind the everyday experiences and objects that we take for granted,” says Tom Pringle. 

Festival Director Chris Green, who saw him perform at the Edinburgh Science Festival in 2013, said Dr Bunhead’s events are in keeping with the New Zealand International Science Festival’s message of ‘leave boring behind’.

About the New Zealand International Science Festival

The New Zealand International Science Festival is a biennial event that was first run in 1998. Each festival involves international guests, national experts and a wide range of interesting events to inspire and educate.

The events are run with the help of around 40 volunteers, and thousands of visitors from all over the country take part in the festival activities.

The NZ International Science Festival is a not-for-profit organisation which aims:

  • To promote and celebrate science, technology and the natural environment to a wide general audience, and show that science is exciting, fun, and accessible
  • To encourage young people to consider science, technology and environmental studies as positive career options 
  • To show the relevance of current developments in science and technology to our daily lives
  • To promote the high quality and achievements of New Zealand scientific research.

The festival programme – including Dr Bunhead’s events – will be officially announced in late May, with tickets on sale from early June. Announcements of other key international guests will be made in the coming months. 

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