Noisy Toys Workshops United Kingdom

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Stephen Summers

07766 517711

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Areas served:

South East, London, East of England, East Midlands, West Midlands, Yorkshire, North West, North East, Wales, Scotland, South West


January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December


5 to 7 years, 8 to 10 years, 11 to 13 years, 14 to 16 years, College, University

The science of sound, Become part of an electrical circuit, feel one thousand watts of bass through your fingers and send lentils flying in the air with the power of amplified sound!

Listed under: Design and Technology | Music | Science | School Workshops | STEM | Making | Science

What are our Workshops like?

These workshops are a culmination of ten years of Noisy Toys workshops in schools and at STEM events. They have been specifically designed for a classroom setting with clearly structured targets and outcomes, and also draw on our extensive experience of engaging young people’s enthusiasm at public events. We believe that elements of play, experimentation and exploration are invaluable tools to learning, and we have the experience to combine these elements for a unique educational experience.

Workshops and shows are led and performed by Stephen Summers who is a qualified teacher and an experienced Science Communicator, workshop leader and performer.

As well as countless workshops and assembly shows in schools across the country, these workshops have been featured at many national events and institutions including: The Big Bang Fair (national & regionals), UK Maker Faire, several mini Maker Faires and MakeFests, Museum of Science and Industry (Manchester), National Media Museum (Bradford), Manchester, Edinburgh, Cheltenham, Wrexham Science Festivals, the British Science Association and many others.

What does a typical school workshop visit include? 
A typical day at a Primary or Secondary school will often consist of an introductory Bass in Your Face assembly show, followed by workshops for the rest of the day. Other options are for an extra workshop instead of the show, or finishing with a show. Schools often use our visit to start a topic on sound or electricity. We often adapt the content to suit specific topics, so please get in touch to discuss how we can suit your requirements best.

Making & Tinkering
Students work in groups and are led through stages of constructing mini Noise Machines step-by-step, but then get a chance to develop their creations (helping themselves to extra resources) to experiment with -and refine- the sounds that are produced. They are encouraged to problem-solve when things stop working. Is it a broken connection, a dead battery or a short circuit? They are shown how to test and fix themselves, with help on hand if needed. All kits use low-power batteries and so it’s safe to use our fingers to connect live circuits; safely working with electricity and tools is addressed.

Sustainability & Upcycling
We look inside the magic boxes of electronic products, re-evaluating our relationship too them and taking back control. We discuss the environmental and social consequences of the disposability of consumer electronics and ask what can be done. All of the resources that we use are very cheap or freely available and we show young people how easy it is to start experimenting without needing to spend money or produce waste.

What we offer

Noisy Toys workshops perfectly combine creative and scientific content with an emphasis on sustainability. In every workshop there will be laughter, a sense of wonder and discovery, experimentation, some unexpected surprises, and lots of weird noises including booming bass and squeaky noses. To make our noise machines we have to understand some of the basics of circuits and vibrations. We get to experiment, play, work in groups and problem solve. Creative thinking will be essential, but so will technical skills and theoretical understanding.

Standard workshops are available for KS2 & KS3, with bespoke workshops available for older groups.

Please refer to our website for specific information about workshops aimed at KS2, KS3 and other groups: http://noisytoys.org/what-we-do/workshops/

"The children were fascinated. It is science they will all remember because they enjoyed it so much."  -Liz Clover, Head teacher, Park Road Primary School

Main Educational themes
- Sound and vibration; sound waves, longitudinal & latitudinal waves, frequency and amplitude
- Circuitry; working with basic components, resistance & conductivity, current flow
- Electromagnetism; electromagnets used in loudspeakers, electro-motors used in fans, using circuits to alter magnetic fields in order to move physical objects
- Design & Technology; making, designing, adapting, properties of materials, use of electricity for functional purposes
- Sustainability; built-in obsolescence, recycling and upcycling, 
- Music; found sound, building, evaluating and developing instruments, using music technology, working in groups to improve our music

“It was really engaging and lots of fun as well as insightful about the science of sound. Stephen is a natural entertainer and teacher and it was one of the favourite workshops of the day by far.” - Heather Beames, Deputy Head, Gildredge House

Group Sizes Catered For

Upto 30.

Materials, Resources & Information Provided

Resource packs will be available from early 2018, please get in touch if you would like to know more: http://noisytoys.org/ 

Photography, Filming & Audio Restrictions

Photography, Filming & Audio are permitted, no restrictions.

Education Officer Information

Stephen Summers. 07766517711. 

Pricing Information

£400 day rate

£250 half day rate

£200 assembly show (no workshops)
+ travel at 40p per mile return from West Yorkshire. 

Accommodation costs may be required for very distant jobs. These will be avoided or minimised as much as possible, especially if camper van parking is available.

First Aid Information

Our Team are fully first aid trained


“Thank you for the fantastic ‘Bass in your Face’ workshop which both students and teachers here at Gildredge House School enjoyed immensely. It was really engaging and lots of fun as well as insightful about the science of sound. Stephen is a natural entertainer and teacher and it was one of the favourite workshops of the day by far.” - Heather Beames, Deputy Head, Gildredge House

“I worked with Steve (Noisy Toys) as part of the Media Museum’s ‘Make Some Noise’ festival. This involved Steve delivering a host of sound based content in local schools, as part of our school engagement programme. Using a variety of multi-sensory tools and techniques, Steve establishes the principles of sound whilst alerting pupils to its wonders. His sessions are fun, inquisitive and open-ended. Moreover, they encourage pupils to explore sound beyond the classroom. This is fundamental to his practice: Noisy Toys spark passion in sound. Of the many schools that we visited, I could see pupils eyes (and ears) being opened to the subject. I am very happy to recommend Steve and Noisy Toys.” - Mr Iain Hendry, Audience Developer, National Media Museum

"The young people who experience it and experiment enthusiastically with the sound making devices all gain a greater understanding of how sound works and have fun learning."  - Jason Butcher, Ucan.TV / Deputy Head Egerton High School (EBD)

“The experimenting with sounds and noises was mesmerising to the young people and was stretching their minds with technical invention. If any artform is designed to get young people thinking outside of the box then this one will." - Deborah Curtis, The House of Fairy Tales

"Our children had a fantastic time learning about different types of circuits and how to make a wide variety of sounds from different materials. Steve was an excellent teacher and the children responded very well to the interesting activities throughout the session. I would fully recommend Noisy Toys to any primary school who would like their children to learn more about electricity and sound production"  - Richard Street, Deputy Head, Bilton Grange Primary

“Steve provided a day of workshops on the Science of Sound at a ‘Science in a Nightclub’ event that I was coordinating during National Science and Engineering Week. His workshops were very well received and I would have no hesitation in using him again or recommending him for similar events” -Claire Willis, Inspiring Science Coordinator, Science Learning Centre North East

“All classes really enjoyed it especially the hands-on nature of the activities. It was lots of fun and allowed everyone to get involved in playing with sounds and making music together. The sessions were adapted for each age group so everyone benefited from it. I have no hesitation in recommending Steve and Noisy Toys.” - Carole Marret, Music Coordinator, Button Lane School

More Testimonials available on our website: noisytoys.org/ 

Other Information

Workshops are led Stephen Summers who is a qualified teacher with over ten years experience teaching, leading workshops and performing stage shows as a Science Communicator at STEM events all over the country.

Several other workshops are available, including:
- The Unmaking workshop; we dismantle old electronics to obtain our resources. It’s a lot of fun, we get better at using tools and we learn how things are made, by breaking them!

- Music is Maths; lots of rhythmic number games using our bodies and voices. No resources needed.

- Hack the Games; using home made retro games consoles built around reconditioned laptops running on all open sources software, we learn various aspects of coding to improve and adapt the games (led by Mick Chesterman).

Location Information

Anywhere in the UK.

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