Help for the home-schoolers: Boosting the appeal of school-age science experiments

For much of the past year, school-age children in the UK have been studying at home because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Parents had to become kitchen-table teachers with their sons or daughters as pupils in the “school of mum and dad.” It quickly became apparent, to anyone who did not know, that teaching is a specialist skill developed over years of training and practice. There are numerous challenges in providing educational support for children and parents could not suddenly become “experts in everything.”

Mum and dad needed help. And lots of it.

We were approached by one of our colleagues whose father, a retired teacher, had put together a booklet of simple science experiments, together with instructions and basic hand-drawn illustrations on how to conduct them. Our brief was to enhance the source material and to illustrate it in a way that would appeal to the target audience: kids stuck at home!

It was hoped that these simple experiments, which illustrate important principles in chemistry, physics and biology, would help keep kids entertained and busy. Each experiment could be set up quickly and required only objects that you could find around the house.

After brainstorming possible design and image styles, our team settled on a clean, but slightly comical, illustration style using caption boxes where appropriate. The fonts were chosen to complement the illustrations, again nothing too formal, so we selected a hand-drawn typeface. A dark background colour was selected to help the illustrations “pop” out of the page. The result, delivered to a tight deadline, was an interactive PDF document with very simple navigation.

You can take a look at it here.

Happy experimenting!

ServicesInteractive graphics, Design, Technical writing, Art direction, Editing

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