Lighting Up the Curriculum for Excellence

Inspiring the next generation of Engineers and Scientists


Summer Soldering Workshops

20th June 2023

35 teachers from 29 schools came to three soldering workshops across Scotland in May and June 2023.

Teachers took away Lighting Up Starter Kits and Rampaging Chariot robot kits from workshops held at St Sylvester's RC Primary School in Elgin, Dumfries House in Cumnock, and Edinburgh Laser Optics in Penicuik.

Comments included:

  • "Absolutely amazing - the best CLPL session I have ever attended!"
  • "The hands-on nature will ensure I 'can do' when back in the classroom."
  • "I was engrossed while figuring out the soldering and believe my pupils will be too."
  • "The supply of kits/resources is fantastic and removes a major barrier to getting this type of project up and running."
  • "Brilliant course. Very passionate + knowledgeable leaders!"

Thank you to the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) for sponsoring the kits that teachers took back to school, and to St Sylvester's RC Primary School, Dumfries House and Edinburgh Laser Optics for hosting the workshops.

Lighting Up Sacred Heart

16th December 2022

All pupils from P5, P6 and P7 joined us for a lantern themed Lighting Up workshop at Sacred Heart Primary, Penicuik on 16th December.

Lighting Up Priorsford

9th December 2022

22 pupils from Priorsford Primary learned to solder at Peebles High School on 23rd September, ahead of a visit to the Kivlin Lab at Edinburgh University on 9th December where they made many more electronic creations.

Lighting Up Ae

25th November 2022

Congratulations to five determined members of staff who succeeded in achieving their LUtCfE soldering accreditation at Ae Primary school on November 25th.

Meanwhile all 15 pupils created a Galaxy of Christmas decorations all ready to be 'litup'.

Eastgate Science Festival

16th September 2022

Celebrating the IOP Year of Glass...

Over 250 pupils from 6 schools attended the annual science event at Peebles Eastgate theatre.

Dr. Ayako Tani, who is currently the resident glassblower for Glasgow University, kindly returned to Peebles to demonstrate her amazing skill alongside fellow glassmaker and story teller, Robert Mcleod, who explained the techniques of industrial glassmaking.

Dr. Roger Hill explained how his design for a Ring Laser Gyroscope made of glass helped to guide the rockets that put the very first geostationary satellites into space. Volunteers who aimed 'rockets' at our 'asteroid' belt convinced everyone it's not easy!

Dr. Inga Dry and a team of brilliant cell biologists from the Roslin Institute rely on glass for their powerful microscopes. Several eager volunteers had their cheek cells collected and displayed on the big screen.

Dr. Alan Walker of Edinburgh University explained that glass was also essential for Nobel Prize winner and local hero CTR Wilson, who created the cloud chamber. He illustrated the importance of this equipment with his own home made cloud chamber, allowing everyone to see invisible cosmic rays which constantly rain down from space.

The day ended by 'raising a glass' when snippets from Prof. Annie Hill's lecture for the Orkney Science Festival let the adult audience into some secrets of creating flavours for the brewing and distilling industry.

Thank you to all the presenters, the enthusiastic audience and the ever helpful Eastgate staff who made this a brilliant day!!!


Over many years our Alien Light circuits have inspired children to be creative. No surprise to see them being used to lightup awareness for the children of Ukraine!

More photos on our Ukraine page.

Soldering Workshops Return

The first CPD soldering workshop since lockdown produced the familiar response in Midlothian "Brilliant"

Likewise the long awaited return to Dumfries House was greeted with overwhelming enthusiasm by all attendees. The workshop was kindly sponsored by the IET and IMechE Engineering Education Grant Scheme.

Free Top-Up Kits

Thanks to generous funding from the Institute of Physics, we once again have free top-up packs available for schools who have previously taken part in the Lighting Up project!

Contact Benjie Marwick Johnstone to apply. Hurry while stocks last!

Midlothian Teachers CPD Soldering Workshop

STEM Ambassadors Week in Scotland

Friday 4th February 2022

New start or refresher

Penicuik 10am-12pm, 1pm-3pm, twilight session 4pm-6pm.

Numbers limited following Covid restrictions but sessions will be flexible and tailored to your need. Please contact Benjie at if you are interested.

Lighting Up Ayrshire

updated January 2022

We hope to run a soldering CPD workshop for teachers at Dumfries House in March 2022 in combination with Rampaging Chariots.

Lighting Up kits are available for all primary schools (full kit for new schools and top-up resources as needed for previous participants).

Rampaging Chariot robot kits are available for secondary schools as needed.

All teachers and school staff are welcome to come along for refresher training!

Spaces and kits may be limited. Please contact Benjie at if you are interested.

Free Top-Up Kits

December 2021

Thanks to generous funding from the Institute of Physics, we once again have free top-up packs available for schools who have previously taken part in the Lighting Up project!

Contact Benjie Marwick Johnstone to apply. Hurry while stocks last!

Christmas Challenge

November 2021

Calling all young engineers!

Show us your festive light-up creations! Send in your photos before 25th December 2021 for a chance to win a bag of Rainbow circuit kits. We are looking for creative, inventive, artistic, unique and beautiful creations using at least one of our light-up circuits.

Please send photos to Benjie at and remember to let us know if you are happy for your photos to be featured on our website.

Christmas Card Charity Challenge

December 2020

Get creative this "Corona Christmas"!

Ever since the first cards with ‘high tech’ 5 flashing LEDs lit up Edinburgh University’s Satway lab over 20 years ago, nothing has stopped amazing Young Engineers and Scientists Lighting Up and often fundraising for Chosen Christmas Charities.

From candlelit cribs and rainbow lanterns to flashing sleighs and starry skies...

Loanhead’s Christmas fundraiser made their Ugandan friends very happy at Newman school.

The flickering candle helped raise hundreds!

Find your circuits

(let us know if you need one - we have a few available - supplies are limited)

Get creative...

and share your ideas and photos!

How will you use your circuits to raise money for charity this year?

Lighting Up Dalkeith

March 2020

20 teachers from Midlothian learned to solder electronic circuits at our CPD workshop on Friday 6th March 2020. MSP Colin Beattie was delighted to see the teachers' enthusiasm for the project.

Thanks to generous funding from the IET/IMechE Engineering Education Grant Scheme, twelve primary teachers from new schools took home a Lighting Up Starter Kit including 40 of our circuits and all the soldering tools needed to assemble them. Three further kits were sent out to schools who could not make it on the day. We still have funding for a further ten kits for our upcoming workshop at Dumfries House which has had to be postponed until it is safe for teachers to attend.

Thanks to generous sponsorship from Leonardo, secondary teachers from five schools were offered a Rampaging Chariot kit which will allow them to compete in the Scottish Robotic Games 2021.

Thanks to generous sponsorship from the IOP, teachers from three schools who have previously used the Lighting Up project were able to take top-up circuits back to school to continue the project with more pupils. We have already sent top-up kits to seventeen other schools

All 20 teachers are now highly competent in soldering and proudly took home their assembled circuits as well as the free resources for their schools.

Lighting Up 25 New Schools

Thanks to a £5000 grant from the IET/IMechE Engineering Education Grant Scheme, Young Engineers and Science Clubs Scotland will be offering Lighting Up Starter Kits to 25 new primary schools.

We will be running soldering CPD workshops at Dalkeith High School on Friday 6th March and at Dumfries House in Ayrshire on Wednesday 6th May.

Further details on the SCDI website.

Contact Benjie Marwick Johnstone to register your interest.

Free Top-Up Kits

Thanks to generous funding from the Institute of Physics, we once again have free top-up packs available for schools who have previously taken part in the Lighting Up project!

Contact Benjie Marwick Johnstone to apply. Hurry while stocks last!

Soldering CPD at Dumfries House

Teachers from ten schools joined our CPD soldering workshop at Dumfries House on Thursday 24th October. One happy teacher said "courses like this let you feel excited about learning and teaching again".

Each teacher took away a free soldering starter kit for their school.

Taster Workshop at Paradykes Primary

Teachers at Paradykes Primary tried soldering and learned about Lighting Up at a taster workshop on Tuesday 22nd October.

Peebles Eastgate Science Event

Over 400 pupils from Priorsford, Kingsland and Halyrude Primary Schools were busy bees at the annual Peebles Eastgate Event on Thursday 26th September and Thursday 3rd October.

Lighting Up's workshop, Essential Engineering, ran alongside sessions on Brilliant Biology, Cool Chemistry, Mystery Maths and Terrific Technology.

Peebles Soldering Workshop

Eleven pupils from Priorsford Primary School learned to solder at Peebles High School on Friday 20th September, ahead of the Peebles Eastgate Event.

Lighting Up Ae Primary

The pupils of Ae Primary School enjoyed an Alien Light workshop on Friday 28th June.

International Women in Engineering Day @ Leonardo

70 girls from local primary schools met K9 and lit up Leonardo to celebrate International Women in Engineering Day on Friday 21st June.

Scottish Robotic Games

Roboteers at the Scottish Robotic Games enjoyed our Alien Light workshop on Saturday 1st June, featuring a very special guest called K9!

Soldering Workshop at Clerkhill, Aberdeenshire

23 teachers from 14 schools learned how to solder at Clerkhill Primary in Peterhead on Thursday 9th May and each took away a free kit for their school.

Soldering Workshop in Dalkeith and Loanhead

14 teachers from 11 schools learned how to solder at Dalkeith High School on Friday 8th March and each took away a free kit for their school.

Teachers unable to attend requested a second session which we ran at St Margaret's Primary School in Loanhead on Friday 26 April.

Lighting Up Penicuik and Loanhead

Over 80 children in Penicuik and Loanhead had a marvellous time making light-up 'drones' as well as Christmas cards used to raise money for a school in Uganda.

Eastgate Annual Science Event

Over 260 primary children and helpers joined soldering experts and engineers for the 'Essential Engineering' Lighting Up workshops during the annual Science Event at the the Eastgate Theatre, Peebles.

Newly introduced 'Terrific Technology' completed the STEM menu alongside Mystery Maths and Splendid Science (Fun Physics and Brilliant Biochemistry).

Dr. Ayako Tani, artist and glass blower, currently resident professor at the Sunderland Museum of glass, joined the new children's 'Terrific Technology' workshops with her amazing ships in bottles. Terrific Technology was also ably supported by Leonardo, Edinburgh Laser Optics and STEM Ambassadors.

Dr. Tani also shared the evening with Professor Lesley Yellowlees who gave this year's brilliant Family Lecture on Alternative Energy.

Peebles Soldering Workshop

16 P7 pupils from Peebles primary schools joined our soldering workshop at Peebles High School in advance of the annual Eastgate workshop. All 16 succeeded in making a rainbow....... and being de-"lighted".

The Travels of K9

Thanks to continued funding and support from the IOP, IET, SCDI and STEM Ambassadors and ably assisted by K9 more and more children of all ages have enjoyed lightingup events during 2018

Scottish Robotic Games

Once again children of all ages enjoyed a Lighting Up workshop at the Rampaging Chariots Scottish Robotic Games hosted by Leonardo.

Free Top-Up Kits

25th April 2018

Thanks to generous funding from the Institute of Physics we once again have some free top-up packs available for schools who have previously taken part in the Lighting Up project.

Contact Benjie Marwick Johnstone to apply. Hurry while stocks last!

Peebles Science Event

12th October 2017

200 pupils from P1 to P7 enjoyed Lighting Up workshops during this year's Science Events at Peebles Eastgate theatre alongside equally tempting Cool Chemistry, Brilliant Biology, Mystery Maths, Fun Physics and Glasgow Science Centre's Body Works.

Very special thanks to Prof. Martin Hendry who gave the supporting family lecture on gravitational waves despite receiving the news of the Nobel Prize being awarded that day for their detection. Thanks too to all the presenters, helpers, theatre staff and of course the children and their teachers who make all the effort involved so worthwhile.

James Clerk Maxwell Day

October 2017

Following a several weeks of investigating local hero James Clerk Maxwell children of the Sacred Heart Primary Penicuik were invited to Penicuik Estate where they walked in the footsteps of JCM and then gave a presentation of the 'Electromagnetic Spectrum' in the new visitor centre. Sir Robert Clerk then invited them to join him and Lady Clerk to hear some very special stories of JCM. The visit ended with a picnic.

Peebles High School

20th September 2017

Lighting Up skills were polished up at Peebles High School ahead of the annual primary school hands on workshops at Peebles Eastgate Theatre.

International Women in Engineering Day

2nd July 2017

Seventy girls from local primary schools designed awesome light-up drones on International Women in Engineering Day at Leonardo. Instigator Dr. Carole Marsh was amazed by planet protectors, animal rescuers, cosmetic distribution devices and bringers of joy.

Scottish Robotic Games

13th June 2017

Budding engineers of all ages and from all corners of the Galaxy enjoyed our Lighting Up workshop at the Rampaging Chariot Games day hosted by Leonardo.

Lighting Up Ayrshire

22nd February 2017

Twelve primary schools from Ayrshire learned to solder at our teacher CPD at Dumfries house and took away starter kits containing a soldering iron and 60 of our flashing light circuits. Three high schools joined the session and took away Rampaging Chariot kits.

Comments from the day:

"This was a great session! It has given me so much confidence to use the kit."

"Excellent CPD. Presenters were enthusiastic and engaging."

"Amazing - keep doing exactly what you are doing!"

Lighting Up - Teacher CPD Workshops

20th October 2016

Next Tuesday, seven primary schools from Hillpark, Glasgow will receive Lighting Up Starter Kits and expert soldering tuition at the first Electronics CPD workshop of 2016-2017. Further workshops are being arranged around Scotland throughout the coming year.

Midlothian Science Festival - Park in the Dark

18th October 2016

Dalkeith Primary pupils transformed Lighting Up circuits built by their HS pupils into amazing magical lanterns for an evening Parade at the second annual Park in the Dark event.

Over 100 visitors joined in to follow 'Miss Teen Midlothian' and her lantern around the Park to the music of the Ceilidh band. Four lucky winners received prizes for most innovative and decorative lanterns.

Peebles Science Event

7th October 2016

700 primary children enjoyed Fun Physics, Brilliant Bioscence, Cool Chemistry and Mystery Maths along with Lighting Up workshops at the recent annual science event at Peebles Eastgate Theatre.

Not to be outdone Peebles High School senior physics pupils built 60 Cloud Chambers and lit them up in one day.

A magical evening of Fantastic Light including unbelievable Holoxia Holograms stunned the audience at the Family lecture.

Thank you to all the theatre staff, presenters, volunteers and children who made it all possible.

Free Top-Up Kits

5th October 2016

Thanks to generous funding from the Institute of Physics we can offer free top-up packs to schools who have previously taken part in the Lighting Up project.

Contact Benjie Marwick Johnstone to apply. Hurry while stocks last!