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 Doc Brown's Chemistry

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Whitby Community College Science Department 1993 (photo Keith Deason)

Mike Harrison, Keith 'tech' Deason, Phil Brown, Roger Parsons, Mike Rothwell, Effie Andrews, Alan Bentley

John Verrill, Shirley the 'tech', Sue Spencer, Pete Wallace, Nick Pike, Joan Lister

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Primary Science Fair "Rockets, Aliens and Star wars"

Whitby Community College Summer 2001

Advanced Chemistry Page Index and Links

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Dr Phil Brown's Education, Qualifications and Experience

  • ()c) doc bHND in Chemistry, 1969 (and gained part I of the GRIC degree)

  • Full Graduate of the Royal Institute of Chemistry, GRIC, London, 1969 (now incorporated into the Royal Society of Chemistry)

  • PGCE post-graduate teaching certificate, St Katherine's, Liverpool, 1974

  • ()c) doc bStarted teaching from Easter 1975

  • PhD Physical Chemistry, Liverpool, England, 1976

'Work Experience'!

  • ()c) doc bIn 1957, out of the final junior year of Whiston, Halsnead Primary School class of 45, two girls went to the Prescot Girls Grammar School, and the rest of us were dispersed to various surrounding secondary schools!

  • At Whiston Secondary Modern School for Boys, a kind and thoughtful Chemistry teacher, Mr Fairclough, gave a lazy pupil some chemistry projects to do and that pupil started working and never looked back! until retired!

  • After leaving school at 16 I worked in the analytical laboratories of Ward Blenkinsop, manufacturer of fine chemicals for the pharmaceutical industry. At the same time I studied for the ONC in chemistry via day release and night school at Widnes Technical College (now Halton College) in South Lancashire near Merseyside.

  • Also at 'Widnes Technical College',  I was a student on the first HND sandwich chemistry course in the country (1962-1965). It was the best chemical education I ever received with work placements at Berk Ltd, Essex (flame retardant development for plastics), Distillers Products, Speke, Liverpool (analytical analysis) and ICI Research, Runcorn (herbicide synthesis). I'd love to meet again any of my lecturers from that time, I wonder where they are? are they alive!?

  • I completed by GRIC degree at the Harris College Preston (1968-1969, now part of the University of South Lancashire) and had a great life at Liverpool University doing a PhD in the "Pyrolysis and Combustion of Polymers" in the Donnan Laboratories in the Department of Physical, Inorganic and Industrial Chemistry (1969-1973) followed by the PGCE teacher training course at St Katherine's College, Liverpool (1973-1974).

  • I am a highly experienced Science teacher of GCSE Chemistry and associated Earth Science, GCSE Physics and Advanced Level Chemistry. I started teaching at Shadsworth Comprehensive School, Blackburn, in April 1975 and first encountered those dedicated people who keep the education business progressing as well as ticking over.

  • ()c) doc bI moved to Whitby in January 1978 and for 25 years until retirement in 2003, No2 and then Head of Chemistry at Whitby Community College which is a 14-18 'comprehensive' school serving the seaside town of Whitby in North-East England. By the very nature of the teaching job, it will have its ups and downs but working at Whitby has proved overall a most satisfactory 25 years of professional life and I've never really yearned to leave Whitby and the beautiful North Yorkshire Moors.

  • I've been blessed to work with many dedicated and highly competent colleagues over the years in a college that continues to develop and serve the needs of the town of Whitby. The College has now achieved 'technology college' status and the first electronic blackboards have arrived in science and so hopefully, I will contribute to some 'screen' resources!

  • The Salters Advanced AS/A2 Chemistry course was started in 1998 by myself and Dr Sue Morgan (a prior Salters enthusiast) and we both regard the course very highly. The course has a thoroughly up to date approach to teaching chemistry and its modern applications. The course is quite demanding on both students, and teachers! but its a great course and well worthwhile doing.

  • Most of the courses and training I had undertaken in the last years of my career have been directed towards Salters AS/A2 level chemistry and ICT. I' was awarded the UK threshold 'bonus' for teaching quality, the following upper spine 2 point and 2 recruitment points as a bonus!

  • I did not feel particularly old fashioned in my approach to teaching i.e. use of ICT and the 'Salters' approach to AS/A2 Level chemistry. I worked on the school intranet and my 'embryonic' but growing BT chemistry internet website called "Doc Brown's Chemistry Clinic". There are extensive notes and quizzes for KS3 and GCSE Chemistry. The AS/A2 side of the website awaits major development but the organic chemistry naming and structure sections have been highly praised by the Salters team based in York University and represents a tiny fraction of what I can accomplish through this medium in the long-term.

  • When teaching the GCE advanced Salters AS/A2 Chemistry sets at Whitby, all students were on email support. The WCC 'chemo memo' went out every week and all expected to use my main website regularly. They could send homework and coursework to me for marking and correction. In return they get a Chemistry Sunday bulletin for the following week, an "ask Jeeves service" and of course 'reminders' of deadlines! Parents thought it was great!!!!!

  • Although I'm retired (with a little 'r') from contractual employment Whitby Community College, I have no regrets at all about being a teacher, and cannot think of a more worthwhile job in society.

  • Judging from the appreciative response to my website work, I'd better keep going on it and keep on putting new wine in old bottles!!! and its an appropriate contemporary medium to put 43 years of learning and teaching chemistry experience!!! Over 500 other websites back link to "Doc Brown's Chemistry" and there is much work to do particularly on the Advanced Level AS-A2 (US grades 11-12) pages.

  • As well as working on the website for free, I did science supply teaching cover for Whitby Community College, Caedmon School, Stokesley School and Pickering School and question databases Crocodile Clips-Crocodilia, Promethian and the BBC Bitesize revision site!  I've marked A level chemistry papers for Edexcel and OCR-Salters and KS3 Science SATs. I still did do private tuition locally in North Yorkshire and Cleveland areas.
  • My latest 'adventure' is to join The Dalesmen Singers in the spring of 2011, the Dalesmen are a male voice choir based in the village of Danby on the North Yorkshire Moors and we perform in a variety of venues and help raise money for charities and church funds.
  • I continually walk the North Yorkshire Moors and visit as many interesting places in the UK and Ireland as possible and all trips are faithfully recorded with a digital camera and all are presented with brief notes via North Yorkshire Moors

 

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 and recently a pleasure to be affiliated to "A Ray of Hope UNESCO Youth Ambassador for the Culture of Peace"

Advanced Chemistry Page Index and Links

  • ()c) doc b Interests

 1st THE FAMILY

Becky, Molly, Ros, Me and Mark

2nd, in any order: Walking (egg Yorkshire Dales left), listening to music, archaeology and of course educational chemistry computing as exemplified by this website


Some of my last Advanced Level Chemistry Groups: Year12 AS set and Y13 A2 set and finally

My last GCSE Science-Chemistry-Physics Class at Whitby Community College 2003 (bye bye 10DE1)

Final mugshots of some of you! Science Set 10DE1 and tutor group 12WPB 20002-2003

My last ever contracted GCSE Chemistry lesson: (1) revision of the principles of electrolysis via acidified water, collect the gases together under soap solution, apply lit splint!!!, (2) The 'sparky' Thermit reaction (Al + Fe2O3), (3) burning magnesium in carbon dioxide, explain black specks and crackling! (CO2 made from conc. HCl and powdered limestone - just had to revise rates of reactions!), 1st repeat of (1), (4) flame colours from Na, Li, Ba, Ca etc. to explain firework colours and how we id elements in stars, (5) The Harry Potter Dragon experiment ( A NEW ONE!) - igniting floating clumps of natural gas in soap bubbles - brought the house down (fortunately, just literally, ok J K Rowling!), and couldn't resist a deafening (open windows please, hands over ears) 2nd repeat of (1). 

Advanced Chemistry Page Index and Links

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