This is the CHaOS demonstrator website, mainly intended for our student volunteers. Click here if you were looking for our main front page.

CHaOS Experiments

Experiments sorted by name (ascending)

The page below lists all the CHaOS experiments currently in use. Use the selection box to filter experiments by subject area. Note that there is significant overlap between subject areas - many engineering experiments could easily be classified as physics, medical experiments as biology etc.

Please note a slightly more complete list of experiments exists here

Sort by name (descending)

Animal Cognition

A challenge to get people thinking about animal intelligence

Intelligence tests for animals.

Animal skulls (including primate skulls)

Looking at different animal skulls to compare them and see how they differ.

Why do some animals have really long beaks? Why do others have really big TEETH? With our collection of animal skulls, you can find out how different animals evolved to suit their habitats - and how you are a lot more similar to them than you might think!

Build a Tree

Talk about the different parts of a tree whilst building one out of craft materials

Chromatin Pipecleaner Models

Explore the world of epigenetics, using pipecleaners and corks to model DNA and the chemical changes done to it to turn genes on and off.

Humans have 19,000 genes. How are only certain genes turned on in each cell so that brain cells express brain genes, but not heart genes and vice versa? Here we make fun chromatin models to explore epigenetics.

Creepy Crawlies

Looking at a variety of small creatures that you can find in your garden

Insects, worms, bugs and more: what lives in your garden? Get up close and personal and see for yourself!

Please note: This experiment is not used on the summer roadshow

Drosophila

This experiment aims to introduce kids to a wonderful model organism, the Drosophila fruit fly.

You'll have seen some of these fruit flies before: these cool and beautiful little creatures have shown us how genes can be inherited (by following patterns of features like eye colours), and how genes work.

Please note: This experiment is not used on the summer roadshow

Epidemiology CHaOS plus!

Show kids how disease dynamics, with a model of Citrus Canker spreading through a population of orange trees

Exploring the concept of disease spread and biological modelling.

Kiwi DNA

Breaking open cells of a kiwi fruit and making the DNA inside visible to the human eye

In this experiment we get DNA out of living cells in kiwi fruit. The DNA can be made fully visible to the human eye - no microscopes or magnifying glass needed! Done in less than 5 minutes in front of your eyes.

Microbes: bacteria

Cuddly bugs, props from a lab, and a hand-washing experiment

Bacteria are living things made from only one cell. You've probably heard about how they cause disease, but you might not know about some of the friendlier ones that are useful to us. Come and investigate our extra large cuddly microbe collection!

Microbes: parasites

Get up close an personal to some parasites (well, preserved slides), and find out more about them...

Parasites are a massive problem for global health, particularly in the developing world. Find out more about these creatures, who get a bit too close for comfort!

Microbes: viruses

Cuddly viruses and a few models too

Viruses are tiny particles that infect animals and plants - causing infections like chicken pox. Come and have a look at our cuddly viruses and hear more about what they do!

Microscopes & Cells

Examining a variety of objects under a microscope, including a variety of slides

All sorts of things can be viewed down a microscope! This might include the biology lesson classic of an onion skin, the shapes of salt and sugar crystals, the eye of the insect you found in your tent, a drop of puddle water...

Mini-beasts

A variety of sea life and freshwater animals observed using microscopes
Please note: This experiment is not used on the summer roadshow

Model cells

Box of model cells

You'll often see these model cells helping to explain other biology experiments, but one day they may get their own solo careers...

Pipe-cleaner neurones

Making model neurones from coloured pipe cleaners!

Neurones are cells in your brain, that connect to lots of other neurones. Make some brains cells yourself with brightly coloured pipecleaners and the expert help of one of our demonstrators.

Plant evolution & pollinator game

Plant evolution timeline and matching plants with their pollinators

Plants

Plants - looking at germination, their structure and how they produce energy by photosynthesis
Please note: This experiment is not used on the summer roadshow

Pond Life

A selection of organisms from a local pond or rock pool
Please note: This experiment is not used on the summer roadshow

Xylem

Showing one of the transport systems in plants.

Combine food colouring with water transport in stem and flowers- you can then see where all the water goes!

Please note: This experiment is not used on the summer roadshow

Yeast & bread making

The idea is to look at how yeast grows and how it relates to bread making. It involves getting the kids to make bread dough.

Like all the best biology experiments, this is hands-on and messy! See what happens when you add living yeast to a bread mix, and don't forget to come back a bit later to see what's happened to your dough!