TV Science Advisor

Qualifications

At College
Physics, Mathematics, Chemistry

Degree
Physics (Princeton University)

PhD
Particle Physics (University of Chicago)

David is a lecturer and TV science advisor.

“Until I worked on the show, I never knew so much thought, effort and talent into making a TV program,” says David, who advises on the hit US comedy show, The Big Bang Theory.

“The writers send me scripts in advance. I check that they’ve got the physics right.  Sometimes it’s something straightforward, like calculating how long it takes a bottle to drop down the elevator-shaft so that the sound effect can be put at the right time. Other times the writers want me to put something new in, and I end up writing the equations for time-travel using wormholes on Sheldon’s whiteboard”

David’s background is in particle physics. “After college, I studied physics at Princeton University, where I was hired to work as a research assistant at a cyclotron after my first year. I later carried out research at Fermilab’s Tevatron, which was the highest energy particle accelerator until the LHC at Cern came along.”

“I’m now a professor at UCLA and I really enjoy the balance between research and teaching. Interacting with students helps keep me on my toes. Lecturing is particularly rewarding, especially when students I have taught overtake my own knowledge and develop a new approach to problem I’ve been working on.”

“Young people might think that physicists work alone in a laboratory for days on end, and are socially inept, a bit like Sheldon from the show. But that is typically far from the truth. Even in the labs, we work in teams. We share our problems, results and ideas with each other – science can be very social.”

You can find more information about careers in physics by visiting www.physics.org

Friends of Millthorpe Summer Fair – Saturday 4 July

Come and join us on Saturday 4 July, 2 to 5pm for our 2015 Summer Fair and enjoy:

  • Live Music
  • Inflatable obstacle course
  • Tea and cakes
  • Beer and Pimms
  • Splat the teacher
  • Craft stalls

The sun always shines at the Millthorpe Summer Fair!

FoM Summer Fair 2015

Talk Less Teaching in the History Classroom

Sara Bowland and Ruth Lingard, joint Heads of History at Millthorpe, meets the Northern History Forum in ‘Ringing the Changes’ to present ideas for best classroom practice on Wednesday 29 April at Leeds Trinity University.

Ruth and I have been lucky enough to take part in a comprehensive series of Continual Professional Development opportunities at Millthorpe during the school year. Led by a team of Lead Teachers (including Ruth), a variety of workshops have been developed that aimed to invigorate and improve our classroom practice. Having taken part in various workshops, staff were given the time to try the new ideas in their classroom, modify them to suit particular subjects and then share these with other staff at a Teaching and Learning Training Day. It was great to see teachers from all department areas, with a varied amount of classroom experience under their belt, sharing great ideas and good practice.

The History Department spent time developing these ideas to suit their subject and as a result have developed lots of resources to focus on the various areas developed in the workshops. The History Department have been looking at using ‘Flip Learning’ with Years 9, 10 and 11, developing our use of questioning in the classroom and really taking the time to embed the idea of ‘Talk Less Teaching’.

We had so much success with this approach in our classrooms that we took the opportunity to present the ideas to over 50 other History teachers at the Northern History Forum. This event, organised by the Historical Association, attracts hundreds of enthusiastic History teachers. This term the forum was called ‘Ringing the Changes’ and Ruth and I were pleased to be on the programme alongside the likes of Ben Walsh, History GCSE textbook author and adviser to Channel 4 Schools on the History in Action series.

Talk Less Teaching Presentation

The focus of ‘Talk Less Teaching in the History Classroom’ developed generic ideas presented to us by Lyndsey Parr (RE department) and was designed to share with other history teachers, ways in which to encourage the holy grail of independent learning in the classroom.

As a department we knew that we all liked to talk too much whilst our students listened passively. The session explored the methods and techniques we have used to make our students do the talking rather than ourselves. The session was jam packed with practical ideas to use in the classroom and was met with positive feedback from the other teachers.

There are so many good ideas that different teachers and departments can share with each other, we’re lucky that we have been given the opportunity and time within school to develop our methods in this way and it was a real privilege to be able to then share what we had adapted with other schools at the Historical Association forum.

Sara Bowland and Ruth Lingard
Joint Heads of History

Poker Player

Qualifications

A-levels
Maths, Physics, Geography and Biology

Degree
BSc Physics with Astrophysics

Liv uses the skills that she learned studying physics to help her play poker at the very top level.

“People always say to me, ‘you did this amazing degree, why are you wasting it playing poker?’ My answer is, ‘I’m not wasting my degree; it’s what enables me to be a fantastic poker player.’ Poker’s a game about making complex decisions, under pressure, in a short period of time. There are so many variables that you have to filter through to make the correct decision – well, that’s what physics is all about – and that’s what has helped me when I am playing on the tables for millions of dollars.

“I chose physics at A-level because it was my favourite science, the most challenging and fascinating subject. I also knew that it’d give me a wide range of options for university and careers. And my advice for anyone choosing their A-levels is to do at least two “tough” subjects such as maths or science. Almost all employers look for that as it shows an ability to think analytically.

“After I graduated from university I did not know what I really wanted to do, although I knew I didn’t want to continue into research science. I saw an advert for a reality TV Poker show, with the tagline ‘Can you use your deception and skills to win £100,000?’.I thought it sounded like fun, so I entered and they taught us how to play poker. After I met some professional poker players and saw how they lived, I thought, “wow, this is an awesome job – that’s what I want to do. And I’ve done pretty well at it. So far I’ve won over 2 million pounds playing poker.

“That’s the beauty studying of physics – you can apply the skills you learn to so many areas. Many of them, like poker, are not so obvious until you try them.”

You can find more information about careers in physics by visiting www.physics.org

Millthorpe Election – and the winner is…

Millthorpe students and staff turned out to vote in their own general election today to see what Millthorpe thinks. Students and staff were encouraged to attend one of three polling stations set up around school during break or lunchtime. As with the policies vote which took place during form time, the choice was between one of the five main political parties:

  • Conservative
  • Green Party
  • Labour
  • Liberal Democrats
  • UKIP

It was a landslide victory for Labour with the Green Party in second and the Conservatives third. The full results are as follows:

13%

Conservative

23%

Green

44%

Labour

8%

Lib Dems

12%

UKIP


The voter turnout was 51%.

Millthorpe Election – Party Policies

During the last two weeks students have been looking at the polices from the five main political parties: Conservative, Green Party, Labour, Liberal Democrats and UKIP and voting on which policy they prefer from each party.

Students were given a Policies Booklet which was deliberately anonymous to remove any brand image or personality associated with the parties and to view the policies on their own merit. Each student then voted for which of the five policies they preferred on the areas of; Economy, Europe, Health, Environment, Education, Crime, Democracy and Foreign Policy.

The results from the students’ vote along with the policies are below.

Economy

12%

Conservative

16%

Green

23%

Labour

28%

Lib Dems

21%

UKIP

  • Aim to balance the structural current budget 2017/18 and set a course to reduce the National debt. Make deficit reduction fair by ensuring high earners and the wealthiest pay their share. Commitment to paying off the debt by taxing wealthiest more.
  • Increase public spending again in line with growth in the economy once the budget is balanced. Spending on public services provided by the Government.
  • Raise the personal allowance to at least £12,500, cutting your taxes by an extra £400. People can earn £12,500 without being taxed, saving everyone money.
  • Ensure that those with the highest incomes and wealth are making a fair contribution by: introducing a banded High Value Property Levy (the ‘Mansion Tax’) across the UK on residential properties worth over £2 million. Greater tax paid by people living in properties worth £2 million or more.
  • Help keep house prices and rents affordable by aiming to boost house building to 300,000 a year. More houses.
  • Invest in major transport improvements, like HS2, and infrastructure to create a ‘Northern Economic Corridor’ a focus for growth, innovation and prosperity across northern England and continue. High Speed Railway connecting London Euston, the English Midlands, North West England, Yorkshire.
  • Invest to make the UK a world leader in low carbon cars, energy efficiency and hi-tech manufacturing.
  • Continue to reform business tax to ensure it stays competitive, making small and medium-sized enterprises the priority for any business tax cuts. Reducing tax for small businesses.

Europe

18%

Conservative

26%

Green

27%

Labour

19%

Lib Dems

10%

UKIP

  • Membership of the European Union is in Britain’s national interest, for jobs, trade, investment and co-operation on issues like cross-border crime and terrorism. But the EU needs reform, so we will make the hard-headed, patriotic case for reform in Europe, not exit from Europe. Changes to EU rules, not leaving the EU.
  • Reform the European Union to make it work better for Britain, reforming free movement so that people coming to the UK have to wait two years to receive out-of-work benefits.
  • Guarantee that no powers will be transferred from the UK to Brussels without an in/out referendum. No EU rule should replace British ones without a public vote.
  • Use our veto power over future EU accession to insist on longer transitional controls when new countries join the European Union. Greater consideration and control over countries joining the EU.
  • Change EU deportation rules to make it easier to send home EU citizens who commit crimes in the UK.
  • Reforms to the EU budget to ensure it is focused on delivering jobs and growth.
  • National parliaments to have more of a say in EU policymaking. National governments (like the UK) to have more influence on EU decisions and policies.

Health

16%

Conservative

9%

Green

24%

Labour

33%

Lib Dems

18%

UKIP

  • We will always ensure access to the NHS is based on need and not on ability to pay and that NHS remains free at the point of delivery. The NHS will be free and accessible to all.
  • Provide £1bn further real terms investment in the NHS each year until 2017/18, followed by sustained increases in funding once the deficit has been eradicated – making real terms HNS funding at least £3bn higher per year by 2020, meeting the needs set out by the Head of NHS England, Simon Stevens. Increase the money invested in the NHS on the recommendation of the Head of the NHS.
  • Equal rights for mental health patients to get treated just as fast as people with physical health problems. Treat mental health patients as fast as physical health patients (i.e. treatments for illnesses such as heart attacks and operations).
  • Do more to tackle the causes of ill health, including promoting healthy eating and exercise, making people aware of the dangers of smoking and excessive consumption of alcohol and other drugs, and helping to improve mental health and well-being. Promote how to eat healthily and make people more aware of the dangers of alcohol and other drugs.
  • Encourage GPs to work together to improve access and availability of appointments, including out of hours.
  • Invest in research and set ambitious goals to improve outcomes for the most serious life-threatening diseases like cancer and long-term conditions like dementia. Spend more money researching illness and disease such as cancer and dementia.
  • Introduce a £250 ‘Carer’s Bonus’ so carers can take a proper break every year.
  • Implement a cap on the cost of social care so the elderly don’t have to sell their homes to pay for care. Make a limit on how much the elderly have to pay towards their care so that they don’t have to sell their homes.

Environment

16%

Conservative

19%

Green

36%

Labour

12%

Lib Dems

17%

UKIP

  • Ambitious, legally binding targets for carbon reduction – including the decarbonisation of our electricity supply by 2030, and full implementation of carbon budgets. Commitment to green energy and reduced carbon emissions.
  • Global targets for reducing carbon emissions with regular reviews towards the long-term goal of what the science now tells us is necessary – zero net global emissions in the latter half of this century. Signing up to global elimination of carbon emissions.
  • Make Britain a world leader in low carbon technology and green jobs, creating a million new high technology, green jobs by 2025.
  • Strengthen the Green Investment Bank with borrowing powers, ensuring it is better placed to support investment in small and medium green businesses seeking to grow. Greater support (including lending) for environmentally friendly businesses.
  • We will improve energy efficiency and insulate at least five million homes over the next ten years.
  • We will prioritise flood prevention and introduce a new climate change adaptation plan to help us properly prepare for the effects of a changing climate.
  • We will protect animal welfare – ending the inhumane and ineffective badger cull, maintaining the ban on hunting with dogs, and introducing a ban on wild animals in circuses.
  • We will protect our forests, keeping them in public ownership, and bring nature closer to people by making public access to green spaces a priority.

Education

15%

Conservative

24%

Green

22%

Labour

25%

Lib Dems

14%

UKIP

  • Invest every penny we can in education from cradle to college – nursery, school, apprenticeships and college – so all our children get the chance to live out their full potential. Investment in varied educational pathways for children.
  • Make 20 hours of free childcare a week available for all parents with children aged from 2 to 4, and all working parents from the end of paid maternity leave (9 months) to 2 years by 2020. Greater support for working parents. Maternity pay from 9 months to 2 years.
  • Introduce a Parent Guarantee that all teachers in state funded schools will be fully qualified or working towards Qualified Teacher Status and a minimum curriculum entitlement with a slimmed-down core national curriculum, which will be taught in all state-funded schools. This will include a ‘curriculum for life’ including financial literacy, citizenship and age-appropriate sex and relationship education. Commitment to qualified teachers. Greater emphasis on citizenship in schools.
  • Extend free school meals to all children in primary education. Ensuring that school food standards apply to all schools, including academies. Maintaining high standards for school meals.
  • A two thirds discount bus pass for under 16-21 so they can afford to get to college and work.
  • Develop the skilled workforce needed to support growth with major expansions of high-quality and advanced apprenticeships, offering vocational education on par with academic qualification backed up with new sector-led National Colleges. Promotion of vocational routes in education and new colleges to focus on specific areas.
  • Expect all universities to support the national goal of widening participation across the sector. This will include running summer schools and setting up mentoring programmes between students and schools pupils. Greater links between universities and schools.

Crime

7%

Conservative

30%

Green

38%

Labour

16%

Lib Dems

9%

UKIP

  • Put visible neighbourhood policing back in its rightful place – at the heart of our communities, with a Local Policing Commitment that gives a guaranteed minimum level of neighbourhood policing, so people have confidence to report crime and confidence that criminals will not escape justice. More police in your community.
  • Bring in new and tougher professional standards in our police service, with officers guilty of serious misconduct struck off. Police who do break these rules will lose their jobs.
  • Abolish Police and Crime Commissioners and put the savings back into frontline policing instead, saving 1,000 police officer jobs that otherwise would have been lost in 2015/16. More police officers.
  • Create the country’s first ever Victims’ Law to give victims of crime new entitlements to minimum standards of service as well as the ability to hold those services to account when standards are not met. New law to protect victims of crime.
  • Tackle violence against women as a priority, with compulsory sex and relationship education in schools and support for refuges.
  • Ensure more perpetrators of anti-social behaviour are required to make good on the damage they have caused, rather than endless cautions, which just get ignored. Punishment related to putting right the crime.
  • Ensure that prisoners spend time out of their cells undertaking work or training. Reforming offenders.

Democracy

15%

Conservative

15%

Green

36%

Labour

28%

Lib Dems

6%

UKIP

  • Implement further devolution to Scotland, and apply a stronger statutory basis for devolution to Wales. More powers to Scotland and Wales.
  • Pass an English Devolution Act, handing £30 billion of resources, and powers over skills, transport and economic development, to city and county regions in England. More powers to local councils outside of London e.g. York.
  • Replace the House of Lords with an elected Senate of the Nations and Regions, to ensure that a much better spread of people from across the country have their voice heard in Westminster, and we’ll reform the House of Commons to better hold the Government to account and strengthen the public’s voice on legislation. Regions of the UK better represented in Westminster.
  • Give 16 and 17 year olds the vote – so that 1.5 million young people have the right to vote in time for May 2016, the first set of elections after the General Election – and make sure that schools, colleges and universities do everything possible for students to be registered to vote.
  • Devolve decisions on transport to local authorities working together across city and county regions, so they can bring together trains, buses, ferries and trams into a single network with smart ticketing. Give power to local councils to improve transport in UK cities and regions.
  • Repeal the current Government’s changes to campaigning rules (the so-called “Gagging Law”), which stop charities and campaigners speaking out, and will consult properly with charities, campaigners and the public to determine what reforms we need to put in place to ensure transparency and protect freedom of speech. Promoting freedom of speech from these organisations.
  • Extend Freedom of Information laws to cover private sector firms delivering public services. Members of the public could request information from these companies.

Foreign Policy

16%

Conservative

23%

Green

11%

Labour

26%

Lib Dems

24%

UKIP

  • Legislate to guarantee that the UK continues to meet the 0.7% aid spending of GNI target. Pass a law that guarantee’s the UK meets their commitment to spend 0.7% of the National Income on overseas aid.
  • Work with our partners in the EU, NATO, the UN and the Commonwealth to tackle security challenges and seek peaceful solutions to conflicts worldwide. Work with worldwide organisations to end conflicts/wars peacefully.
  • Act globally to tackle the threats of climate change and environmental degradation. Work at an International level to challenge climate change.
  • Improve the care of members of our armed forces by re-affirming the Military Covenant, improving mental health service provisions for serving personnel and veterans, and introducing a Veterans Commissioner. Support injured servicemen and women, especially by providing mental health support.
  • Maintain strong and effective armed forces, and set long-term budgets to procure the right equipment at competitive prices. Look to buy the right equipment at the right prices to support a strong armed force.
  • Lead global nuclear disarmament by reducing our stockpile of nuclear missiles. Retaining our Trident independent nuclear deterrent through a Contingency Posture of regular patrols, enabling a ‘surge’ to armed patrols when the international security context makes this appropriate. This would enable us to reduce the UK warhead stockpile and produce fewer Vanguard successor submarines, and would help the UK to fulfil our nuclear non-proliferation treaty commitments. Slowly reduce the number of nuclear missiles and reduce the stockpile of weapons and build fewer nuclear submarines.

Students and staff will also take part in a full ballot on Thursday 7 May.

Particle Physicist

Qualifications

A-levels
Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Maths

Degree
MSc Physics with Space Science and Technology (University of Leicester)

Ben works on the T2K experiment, doing research into neutrino oscillation. The experiment is based in Japan and scientists from several countries contribute.

“I always enjoyed science and physics in particular, so after my A levels I did a masters in Physics with Space Science and Technology. I’d advise anyone to stick with the subjects you enjoy – if you enjoy it, it will never seem like hard work. My degree also left me with the flexibility to change my mind about what I wanted to do. Eventually, despite having studied space science, I decided that I wanted to become a particle physicist.

“A typical day sees me attending global video conferences, writing computer code, and reading up on other research within and outside my experiment. My job also involves a lot of data analysis. I process and produce both real and simulated data and help transfer the information worldwide through a network of computers called the Grid. I then develop new methods of squeezing physics out of the data using statistical methods.

“As my work involves collaborating with scientists based in other countries, I often travel for work and have been to all sorts of amazing places around the world. I’d say that the best part of my job is the variety of problems to solve, the different people you meet and above all the places you visit worldwide.

“An A-level in physics lays a solid foundation for pretty much any career path you could hope to take. Physics is in everything around us as it describes the entire Universe in which we live. The problem solving and scientific skill set you will learn are coveted by all industries so if you do want your end game to be engineer, doctor, accountant, video game designer or scientist then start with physics. I have friends who took physics degrees who have gone on to all of these careers and many more jobs too.”

You can find more information about careers in physics by visiting www.physics.org