York Cares: Robots and tasting quality chocolate

York Children’s University CU in the City was back last month with a third series of exciting and interactive events. From the science of chocolate to the chemistry behind fireworks, we learnt all kinds of new things.

The programme, which has proved extremely popular since its launch last February, had great success once again with over 300 children and their families attending sessions over the course of a fortnight.

The free events, primarily aimed at 7-11 year olds, were led by academics from various departments at the University of York as well as members of York’s business community.

Professor Jon Timmis, Director of the York Robotics Laboratory at the University, led a session entitled ‘Can robots be our friends?’ at which attendees learnt all about our computerised ‘friends’ and got to see some of the University’s amazing collection of robots. The robots displayed some hidden talents, including an excellent ‘gangnam’ style dance routine.

Another event that proved popular was the chocolate inspired event entitled ‘Be the next Willy Wonka!’ We joined experts from York Cocoa House who revealed some of the secrets behind chocolate-making, including using all five senses to check whether the chocolate is ‘good’.

One parent said: “My child thoroughly enjoyed the hands on activities, and taking the lolly home is great! Robots last night was fantastic too!”

Sophie Jewett, Managing Director, York Cocoa House said: “I got involved with York Children’s University because I felt it was really important for businesses across the community to work with children and help prepare them for what the world of work might be like and encourage them to get out and learn things that they might not necessarily realise that they’re learning from.”

The CU in the City events are part of the CU programme that runs all year round. Children who participate in the programme collect stickers in their CU passports for participating in extra-curricular activities. Every year, a graduation ceremony takes place at the University of York for children who have achieved 65 hours of extra-curricular activity.

If you missed us this time, be sure to get involved and come along to the next series of CU in the City sessions taking place in June this year.

For more information on events or how to get involved in York CU visit: www.childrensuniversity.co.uk/york