Year 10 student Saskia reports from The Gifted and Talented Conference which took place recently at the Royal High School in Bath

The Gifted and Talented Conference began with a bang (quite literally!) with a practical chemistry demonstration, ‘Gases in the Air’, from Bristol University lecturer Dr Jonny Furze. The boom of exploding hydrogen balloons and the hazardous beauty of liquid nitrogen had us all mesmerised. We were intrigued with the everyday wonders of chemistry surrounding us.

Dr Jonny Furze bringing chemistry to life

Often magic and maths are not immediately associated with each other. However, mathematician and public speaker Ben Sparks enlightened us to their strong relationship. After performing some astonishing illusions in his ‘Magical Maths’ talk, the fascinating mathematics working impeccably behind the scenes was an eye opener.

Bristol University lecturer, Dr Richard Cole, took us back in time to ancient Rome with his talk on ‘Politics and Propaganda from Rome to Trump’. This thought provoking talk gave us insight into politics over two and a half thousand years ago, alongside those of the present day.

An inspiring talk entitled ‘Creativity in Times of Crisis’ from Jennifer Scott, Director of Dulwich Picture Gallery, connected to very current feelings and thoughts on how to keep creativity alive and flourishing. This vibrant finish to the conference left us with newfound energy for ourselves and our passions, helping us to overcome calamity and gloom.

Year 10 students enjoying the conference

Year 10 were very fortunate to experience this conference in real life; the speakers were with us in the Memorial Hall at RHS, and we had the great privilege of livestreaming this event to numerous GDST schools across the country and seven other local schools.