Jabir Ibn Hayyan Celebrated at the Berlin Science Week 2019

1001 Inventions Engages with Berlin Primary Students

Berlin, 8 November 2019:  As part of this year’s edition of the Berlin Science Week, 1001 Inventions organised “Journeys from Alchemy to Chemistry” educational programme at selected Berlin primary schools. The Berlin Science Week celebrates annually science and scientific discoveries through hosting numerous events to foster the exchange between researchers, institutions and the broader public.

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“1001 Inventions: Journeys from Alchemy to Chemistry” programme brought the wonders and joys of science to young audiences. During a full school week – between November 4 and November 8 – 1001 Inventions’ team in Berlin visited six primary schools and engaged with over 750 children.  This programme was made possible in Berlin thanks to the kind contribution of the Ernest Solvay Fund, managed by King Baudouin Foundation.

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To organise a full immersive programme for students, 1001 Inventions team transformed classrooms at visited schools into an inspiring space for the children to enjoy an exciting educational experience. At each school, students start their journey by watching the animated video, by Professor Jim Al-Khalili, renowned scientist, author and broadcaster. “Journeys from Alchemy to Chemistry” short video introduces children to the fascinating world of science from over one thousand years ago. It brings to life the contributions to the foundations of modern chemistry by lesser-known pioneers from ancient cultures and civilisations including the remarkable work of the 8th century pioneering polymath Jabir ibn Hayyan, also known as Geber.

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Following the film students participate in engaging activities, themed on chemistry and its applications, led by a creative team of science explainers. Through casting their own soap bars, for instance, children learn about ancient recipes and techniques of soap production, practices of personal hygiene, and the science behind foam and bubbles. By carefully observing dry ice experiments, and joining a hands-on activity on making goo, children understand the properties of solids, liquids and gases in a fun, playful way. The children leave the workshops after being introduced to basic concepts of chemistry and learning that science exists not only inside labs, but makes up an important part of their everyday lives.

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Towards the end of their experience students meet the Jabir ibn Hayyan mascot who shares further information about the programme and how students could access the ‘Educational Workshops’ guide with a variety of themed activities. Such educational resources allow children to continue their learning journey with their teachers and parents beyond the event.

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1001 Inventions launched “Journeys from Alchemy to Chemistry” in January 2019 at UNESCO headquarters in Paris as part of the opening ceremony of the International Year of the Periodic Table of Chemical Elements (IYPT2019). It was the anchor event of the China Science Festival in Beijing and was also part of the All-Russian Science Festival in Moscow. The educational programme aims to engage young people around the world to inspire a future generation of chemists and scientists while promoting diversity and cross-cultural understanding.

Learn more on: www.1001inventions.com/chemistry

About Jabir ibn Hayyan (722 to ca 815)

Jabir ibn Hayyan spent most of his life in Kufa, Iraq, where he devised and perfected sublimation, liquefaction, crystallization, distillation, purification, amalgamation, oxidation, evaporation, and filtration. He developed precise measuring equipment, and discovered sulfuric, nitric, and nitromuriatic acids, all now vitally important in the chemical industry. His research and publications, including the Great Book of Chemical Properties, The Weights and Measures, The Chemical Combination, and The Dyes, opened the way for modern chemistry and guided scientists during the following centuries.

Source: 1001 Inventions: The Enduring Legacy of Muslim Civilization (Reference 4th Edition, Published by FSTC Limited UK, 2017), [Chapter 3, Section 8: Chemistry].

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About the Berlin Science Week

Berlin Science Week is an international gathering, bringing together people from the world’s most innovative scientific institutions to celebrate science, to connect and engage with the local and international science community and the public. It is dedicated to the dialogue between science and society to inspire a deeper understanding of our world.

Berlin Science Week fosters interdisciplinary exchange and encourages participants to connect and learn from each other. The future of digital identity, medicine or work, food security, the relationship between man and machine, the politics of inequality, art and science, or climate change economics.

In 2019, Berlin Science Week took place between 1 and 10 November, and presented and discussed highly relevant topics in over 130 events across the city. Over 20.000 attendees took part. For the first time in 2019, Berlin Science Week Campus at Museum für Naturkunde Berlin was the central hub of Science Week.

Berlin Science Week is supported by the Governing Mayor of Berlin, Senate Chancellery – Higher Education and Research and is coordinated by the Falling Walls Foundation.


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About the 2019 International Year of the Periodic Table of Chemical Elements (IYPT2019)

On 20 December 2017, the United Nations General Assembly during its 74th Plenary Meeting proclaimed 2019 as the International Year of the Periodic Table of Chemical Elements. Based on the 202 EX/Decision 43, the IYPT2019 was adopted by the UNESCO General Conference at its 39th Session (39 C/decision 60) to highlight the contributions of chemistry and other basic sciences to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The IYPT2019 is an IUPAC initiative and administered by a Management Committee consisting of representatives of the initiating organizations, UNESCO and a number of other supporting international organizations.


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About 1001 Inventions

1001 Inventions is an award-winning, British based organisation that creates international educational campaigns and engaging transmedia productions aiming to raise awareness of the contributions to science, technology and culture from the Golden Age of Muslim Civilisation.

1001 Inventions has engaged with over 400 million people across the globe working with a network of international partners, including UNESCO, National Geographic and leading academics to produce interactive exhibitsshort films, live shows, books and classroom learning materials that are being used by hundreds of thousands of educators around the world.


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