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The discovery of oxygen

Laboratory with kit

Who discovered Oxygen

The discovery and naming of Oxygen happened in the late 18th century. It involves three remarkable chemists from Sweden, England and France, an execution, a self imposed exile, early death, and recycled words from ancient Greece. 

Carl Wilhelm Scheele, a poor hard working pharmacist and enthusiastic chemist, first discovered Oxygen around 1773. 

Independent of Scheele’s work Joseph Priestley, an English churchman and chemist also discovered Oxygen in 1774 and immediately published his results, thus claiming credit. 

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Why is it called Oxygen

Scheele called it “Fire Air” noting it’s importance in combustion. Priestley called it “Dephlogisticated Gas”.  

So how did it come to be called Oxygen?

The credit goes to the famous French chemist Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, a wealthy humanitarian and polymath, who experimented with oxygen and other gases. 

In these experiments Lavoisier noted that when Oxygen combines with other elements it often forms acids.

He called the new gas Oxygene, from two Greek words; Oxy meaning Sharp, and Gen meaning Producing.

In other words Lavoisier called it Oxygen due to its ‘Acid Making’ qualities and the name has stuck!

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What happened to Scheele, Priestley and Lavoisier

And what happened to these pioneers of chemistry? 

Scheele made many more important discoveries during his life despite a lack of funds. He suffered poor health and died in 1782 at only 43 years old.

Priestley was a free thinking radical ‘dissenter’ churchman, who openly celebrated the French revolution. He emigrated to republican America in later life and in 1804 he died aged 70, in Pennsylvania.

Lavoisier was not so lucky. Despite his genius and contributions to French public life in agriculture and industry, he was executed in 1793 during the French revolution.  He was only 50 years old.

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Energy usage in the UK

Energy pylon with energy economic sectors listed

Which sector of the UK uses the most energy

Transport uses a giant 40% of all energy consumed in the UK in 2019. 

Energy Usage in the UK 2019

  • 40% Transport
  • 29% Domestic
  • 16% Industry
  • 10% Private Commercial
  • 4% Public Sector/Government
  • 1% Agriculture

Redcurrant Harvest with Zero Food Miles

Red Currants in a bowl

Freshly picked redcurrants ready for the saucepan

Plant

Common name: REDCURRANTS

Botanical name: RIBES RUBRUM

Harvest time: JULY/AUGUST in UK

Health benefits

Blood: high in IRON  helping form red blood cells 

Heart: POTASSIUM helps lower blood pressure

Digestion: good FIBRE for the gut that helps avoid constipation

Immune system: VITAMIN C protects against viruses and harmful bacteria  

Skin: VITAMINS B & C help with skin cell regeneration and repair from UV damage

About this photo

These redcurrants are freshly picked from a London garden in late July. 

They have been grown on peat free soil and have zero food miles, and zero packaging. 

They will be cooked down into redcurrant jelly for use in cooking, deserts and as a side dish at Christmas 🙂 

 

CalorieMatch on sale at Regency Bookshop Surbiton

Regency Bookshop Surbiton
CalorieMatch Healthy Eating Games in store

CalorieMatch HEALTHY EATING GAMES on sale now for family holiday fun

So pleased to announce @RegencyBookshop is stocking our @CalorieMatch HEALTHY EATING GAMES for the whole family.

Tried and trusted by primary school teachers 🙂

 

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