THE force was most definitely with the children of Red Lane Primary School when they came face to face with Sir Isaac Newton on his 371st birthday.

The scientist, regarded as one of the most influential of all time, was at the Bolton Science and Technology Centre in Farnworth to introduce the young people to the fascinating world of forces in a special two-day educational event run by Playing For Success.

Children not only had a chance to “meet” Sir Isaac Newton they also found out more about his discoveries in a fun, practical way.

Neil West, assistant manager for Playing for Success, said: “This was the launch of a topic the children are doing about Sir Isaac to link science and literacy together.

“The children were not just taking part in practical activities they were writing about them too.”

They created their own hot air balloon using a space blanket as well as learning how to balance plastic bottles and use plasma balls to find out about the forces at work all around. They also found out why aeroplanes do not fall out of the sky.

Mr West said: “We added a bit of drama in the form of Sir Isaac Newton to link it with literacy.

“It was designed to inspire them about science and the topic they are learning and for them to carrying on finding out more about science. They had a lot of fun.

“We want to encourage more young people to invest in the STEM — science, technology, engineering and maths.”


  • Sir Issac Newton was born on Christmas Day 1642 in Woolsthorpe Manor in Woolsthorpe-by-Colsterworth, a hamlet in the county of Lincolnshire, three months after the death of his father.
  • His mother tried to encourage him to become a farmer but he hated it and returned to school.
  • Newton was accepted into Trinity College, Cambridge, and while he studies there were unremarkable in the two years after he left he returned home and worked on theories on calculus, optics and the law of gravitation.
  • Newton himself often told the story that he was inspired to formulate his theory of gravitation by watching the fall of an apple from a tree. Although it has been said that the apple story is a myth and that he did not arrive at his theory of gravity in any single moment, his acquaintances confirm the incident, though not the cartoon version that the apple actually hit Newton's head.
  • His 1687 book Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica laid the foundations for most of classical mechanics.
  • Newton’s Principia formulated the laws of motion and universal gravitation that dominated scientists’ view of the universe for three centuries.
  • He built the first practical reflecting telescope and developed a theory of colour based on the observation that a prism decomposes white light into the many colours of the visible spectrum.