By Peter Dearden 11/11/2015

Peter K Dearden

Hi folks, the current radio silence on this blog is due to Lab in a Box, our mobile science lab,taking all our time,. I thought I should update you on what is going on !

Lab in a Box is on the road and we are so very proud of our Big Blue Box.

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The opening at Kaikorai Primary School went with a bang and there was lots of “ooooo” and “aaahhhh” as the kids checked out the microscopes, the heart pumps, the Oculus Rift and the 3D printer amongst all the other wonderful science gear that packs tightly into the box.

The Otago Museum did us proud with a science magic show that left the kids a little damp and with ringing ears from the exploding 10 gallon drum of water. They LOVED it!

Then it was time to pack it up and send it off… to King’s High School in Dunedin, where it was used to teach rocket making (and launching) and optic science. The box held class after class of robust boys and it met the challenge (see the movie of rocket launch below).


Then the box went to the tiny Catlin’s town Owaka, allowing Catlin’s Area School pupils to play with light and look at the stars. The load was smaller and lighter but the enthusiasm is just as large. Ian Griffin from Otago museum gave a talk about astronomy and kids lined up to look at the moon and stars.


The next stop was Riverton, where the crew from the Marine Science Studies Centre wowed the locals with marine life and the making of seaweed chips.20151027_145324

Then on to Roxburgh, where Genetics Otago, Otago Museum and Landcare all spread the word of science at Roxburgh Area School. Landcare taught the school and community about moths, and the diversity of moths in New Zealand. GO talked conservation genetics, bees and other bugs, and the Otago museum set fire to things.

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Currently the box is in Wanaka for the International Year of Light, but this afternoon it will head over the alps to Whataroa and Greymouth. We then head back over the hill to the Stirling District A&P show, Kirwee, where Genetics Otago and the Bioprotection CoRE will do some neat science. The Great Ruud Kleinpaste will be in the box at Kirwee, so if you are in the area, come on down.


Finally our big blue box will head to Timaru, Karitane and back to Dunedin to sit pretty at the Otago Museum and the Dunedin Botanical Gardens. And then we all breathe and let Christmas roll over us.


Then 2016 starts and the bookings are flowing in already. We are delighted by Lab-in-a-Box, and we feel pretty good about the fact that you do too.


Check out what is happening in Lab-in-a-Box on our website – – or follow us on twitter on @labinaboxnz