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Dr. Phil Brown

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About Dr. Phil Brown

  • Rank
    New Member
  • Birthday 10/06/1945

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  • Website URL
    http://www.wpbschoolhouse.btinternet.co.uk
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Profile Information

  • Location
    Castleton, North Yorkshire, England
  • Interests
    Walking, archaeology, chemistry and educational computing.<br><br>After leaving school at 16 I worked in the analytical laboratories of Ward Blenkinsop, manufacturer of fine chemicals for the pharmaceutical industry. At the same time I studied for the ONC in chemistry via day release and night school at Widnes Technical College (now Halton College) in South Lancashire near Merseyside. <br><br>Also at 'Widnes Technical College', I was a student on the first HND sandwich chemistry course in the country. It was the best chemical education I ever received with work placements at Berk Ltd, Essex (flame retardant development for plastics), Distillers Products, Speke, Liverpool (analytical analysis) and ICI Research, Runcorn (herbicide synthesis). I'd love to meet again any of my lecturers from that time, I wonder where they are? are they alive!? <br><br>I completed by GRIC chemistry degree at the Harris College Preston (now University of South Lancashire?) and had a great life at Liverpool University doing a PhD in the "Pyrolysis and Combustion of Polymers" followed by the PGCE teacher training course at St Katherine's College, Liverpool. <br><br>I am a highly experienced Science teacher of GCSE Chemistry and associated Earth Science, GCSE Physics and Advanced Level Chemistry. I started teaching at Shadsworth Comprehensive School, Blackburn, in April 1975 and first encountered those dedicated people who keep the education business progressing as well as ticking over. <br><br>I moved to Whitby in January 1978 where I am at present, and for the last 20 years, Head of Chemistry at Whitby Community College which is a 14-18 'comprehensive' school serving the seaside town of Whitby in North-East England. By the very nature of the teaching job, it will have its ups and downs but working at Whitby has proved overall a most satisfactory 25 years of professional life and I've never really yearned to leave Whitby and the beautiful North Yorkshire Moors. <br><br>I've been blessed to work with many dedicated and highly competent colleagues over the years in a college that continues to develop to serve the needs of the town of Whitby. The College has now achieved 'technology college' status and the first electronic blackboards have arrived in science and so hopefully, I will contribute to some 'screen' resources! <br><br>The Salters Advanced AS/A2 Chemistry course was started in 1998 by myself and Dr Sue Morgan (a prior Salters enthusiast) and we both regard the course very highly. The course has a thoroughly up to date approach to teaching chemistry and its modern applications. The course is quite demanding on both students, and teachers! but its a great course and well worthwhile doing. <br><br>Most of the courses and training I have undertaken in the last few years have been directed towards Salters AS/A2 level chemistry and ICT. I've was awarded the UK threshold 'bonus' for teaching quality, the following upper spine 2 point and recruitment point 2 as a bonus at the end! <br><br>I do not feel particularly old fashioned in my approach to teaching ie use of ICT and the 'Salters' approach to AS/A2 Level chemistry. I worked on the school intranet and my 'embryonic' but growing BT chemistry internet website called "Doc Brown's Chemistry Clinic" . There are extensive notes and quizzes for KS3 and GCSE Chemistry. The AS/A2 side of the website awaits major development but the organic chemistry naming and structure sections have been highly praised by the Salters team based in York University and represents a tiny fraction of what I can accomplish through this medium in the long-term. <br><br>Although I'm now retired (with a little 'r') from from contractual employment Whitby Community College, I have no regrets at all about being a teacher, and cannot think of a more worthwhile job in society. <br><br>Judging from the response to my website work, I'd better keep going on it and putting new wine in old bottles!!! and its an appropriate contemporary medium to put 40 years of learning and teaching chemistry experience!!! Over 300 other websites link to "Doc Brown's Chemistry Clinic" and there is much work to do particularly on the Advanced Level AS-A2 (US grades 11-12) <br><br>As well as working on the website, I now do science supply teaching cover for Whitby Community College and private tuition.
  1. Dr. Phil Brown

    A Level Chemistry E-Mail List??

    Put on The Education Forum July 24th 2004 Adrian Dingle A links An email list may be a good idea BUT listing good sites is also I do my best to find and list good sites, sorted from hundreds and hundreds at ... http://www.wpbschoolhouse.btinternet.co.uk/page02/page02.htm and at the end of page .... http://www.wpbschoolhouse.btinternet.co.uk...ev/AQAindex.htm which was written for my GCSE students. (and also page06, page07 and page12 which were for my Salters A level Chemistry students) I also try to link what I've written to any GCSE/IGCSE course containing chemistry! at http://www.wpbschoolhouse.btinternet.co.uk/page20/page20.htm BUT unfortunately it takes time to review and assess sites for their worth. Far too many links sites just list and list for ever without real appraisal. Also, I get very little feedback, particularly from busy teachers, as to how they or their students use my own site because FEEDBACK MAKES ME CHANGE THINGS and I invite via email on every page. The current 'debate' is on animations in quiz Q's, distracting or makes the page more colourful or lively, PLEASE have your say????
  2. Dr. Phil Brown

    Science Coursework

    Guilty on the 1st two counts BUT it is not the teachers fault, its direct result of two factors. (1) pressure to get good results - repeat what you know works and (2) and RARELY DISCUSSED, the demands to produce numbers to match criteria - rarely mentioned and wipes out 95% of all GCSE chemistry. Broaden the criteria with good 'moderated' mentoring the coursework itself will broaden. I must confess I've written two extremely well used web pages on the '1st two counts' they were meant to represent a combination of 4 good 'brainstorms' to represent the four criteria for students or new teachers. Opinion is divided on their 'cheat level' BUT I was a long way from what sites like 'revisioncentral' offer which I find disgusting, where you can buy whole pieces of coursework and free subscription if you supply 3 pieces of finished and good grade coursework. I wish it could be covered by the law!
  3. Dr. Phil Brown

    Chemistry is Dead

    Many students perceive chemistry and physics as being very hard A levels and often opt for biology which they perceive as the 'easy' science A level. Even after choosing chemistry I often had more than average drop out rates. HOWEVER in my last 7 years of teaching I'd changed to Salters Advanced Level Chemistry and although the recruitment did not improve dramatically the drop out rate became minimal. They loved the applied nature of the course (except the coursework - VERY demanding, but good for university entrants), the 'weakest' students hung in and 90-95% of all students passed and the biologists appreciated the 'biochemistry aspects' from Aspirin to enzymes to DNA. Most of my students went on to to a science/medical degree but rarely pure chemistry BUT most needed a good chemistry background. There is a need for students with A level chemistry background but they are more interested in applied acience eg medical sciences and forensic science. I hope there will not be a continued shortage of chemistry specialist but it could be difficult in the future with less pre chemists needed than when I was a student. When it came to teach A level chemistry I'm VERY glad of my traditional pure and industrial chemical education background from ONC night class to being on the very 1st HND chemistry sandwich course in 'Widnes Tech'!!! in the 60's and finally graduating with a 'GRIC', the 'professional' degree of the (as it was then) Royal Institute of Chemistry after 1 years full-time education. We need good pure chemists in education because I feel thery can apply themselves to any chemical situation required, as well of course, as having good teaching and communication skills.
  4. Dr. Phil Brown

    Introduce yourself here

    My Webpage Dr Phil Brown, ex Head of Chemistry, Whitby Community College, England who hopes "Doc Brown's Chemistry Clinic" will help any student around the world and is affiliated to the UNESCO project "Ray of Hope". It's a free to use, non-commercial, 'nuts and bolts' revision web site for CHEMISTRY. It is constantly evolving and expanding with a wide range of revision notes, quizzes and word-fills that were initially designed to support (1) UK KS3 chemistry (equivalent to USA grades 6-8), (2) any UK based KS4/GCSE/IGCSE syllabus containing any chemistry (equivalent to USA grades 8-10) and (3) UK based GCE Advanced Level AS-A2 chemistry (equivalent to USA grades 11-12). My main site is at www.wpbschoolhouse.btinternet.co.uk
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