Design Your Own Fireworks Show - Context/probelm-based learning 


This C/PBL resource asks undergraduate students to design, organise and run a simluated fireworks display. It is intended to support the development of key transferable skills in a discipline-specific context and requires some basic undergraduate chemistry knowledge. This resource includes an activity pack containing worksheets, briefing papers and presentations, allowing the resource to be easily adopted by other HEIs.

Type of Activity

group work, working independently



Age Group

Undergraduate & Postgraduate
design-your-own-fireworks... RSC Recommended


This resource took the Ashfield Music Festival model developed by the Institute of Physics and reworked it to develop a Fireworks-based C/PBL activity for use by second year Chemistry undergraduates. The students were tasked with running a simulated fireworks display, an activity that involved the development of key transferable skills such as communication, teamwork, leadership and commercial awareness. It is designed to provide a discipline-specific context and requires some basic undergraduate chemistry knowledge.

The resources were developed with involvement from industry (Alchemy Fireworks and Skyburst the Firework Company) which allowed the effective alignment of skills needs of employers and the needs of the STEM graduates themselves. In addition, the use of PhD students as 'experts' during the C/PBL activity had the benefit of improving their communication and employability skills.