Norwich Science Festival learning programme

It’s not every day that a school lesson is full of bangs, fireworks and explosions, but that’s exactly what students can expect from the headline Norwich Science Festival learning show. 

‘Fireworks – Real Science or Just Bangs?’ will provide plenty of spectacular explosive action, but also delves into the science, technology, engineering and mathematics behind such displays. Matthew Tosh, the internationally recognised pyrotechnician and presenter behind the show, said: “If you think this is a chemistry show, then think again! There are physics, biology and psychology aspects too, which all combine with the artistry. I’ll be using specialist indoor pyrotechnics and yes, people enjoy the bangs, but it is the unexpected power of the pyrotechnic whistle that often gets audiences talking.”

This headline learning show takes place at OPEN Norwich on Wednesday 17 October, with shows for KS2 and KS3 students, and for home-educated learners and youth groups. It is part of Norwich Science Festival’s learning programme (15–17 October), which also features events where students can create clouds, go on a journey of sound, draw with light, or engage with rap science. The programme engages students with STEMM subjects – science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine – through fun, stimulating workshops and shows. The events, for schools, youth groups and home-educated learners, take place at host venue The Forum and partner organisations. Plus, for schools that find it difficult to venture out, there’s a special ‘Science in Schools’ strand where the best STEMM providers bring science to the classroom. Teachers are also invited to join in a free, informal early evening ‘TeachMeet’ event (Friday 12 October) full of fun and inspiring ways to teach science. Plus, as part of the main Festival, there’s a special Women in Science panel where key women scientists and academics discuss how to encourage the next generation to be the scientists of tomorrow.

Sarah Power, Learning and Events Manager at The Forum, said: “We can’t wait to learn about the science behind fireworks in this exciting event. If schools, youth group leaders and home-educators are looking for something different, stimulating and educational, this is the perfect show for them.”

The Festival is a partnership initiative involving many organisations from across the region, coordinated by The Forum, Norwich, with headline sponsorship from Anglian Water, and additional learning sponsorship from Developing Experts. 

For more information about this years Norwich Science Festival, including how to book, visit