Inspire, create, and explore at Be Curious 2023

Be Curious, the annual University of Leeds family open day, is back for 2023.

On Saturday 13 May, 10am-4pm, the University will be open to the public for a day of free family-friendly activities. From fossils to microscopes, triangles to trees, there will be over 40 features in the programme this year, meaning more to explore. 

Professor Simone Buitendijk, University of Leeds Vice-Chancellor and President, said: “We’re delighted to once again welcome everyone to join in our popular Be Curious event. We value our position at the heart of our local community, and Be Curious is a fantastic opportunity for young – and not-so-young – people to learn more about the work that we do at the University of Leeds.

“While we hope Be Curious will educate, we really want the event to entertain and inspire. Everyone at the University is committed to supporting and engaging with young people across our city and region, giving them the opportunity to be creative and develop critical thinking skills.”

As a part of the day’s activities, Be Curious will hold a fun and interactive theatre workshop open to anyone aged between 9-16, held by stage@leeds young company. The organisation is an inclusive and accessible creative space for young people. 

In addition, the Marks & Spencer archive will be open, giving the opportunity to discover the amazing collection with exciting hands-on activities and the chance to meet Percy Pig. 

Dr Alexa Ruppertsberg, Head of Public Engagement with Research, said: “Be Curious is the highlight of our year. We love opening the doors to the University and welcoming families from across the city.

It gives young people a chance to interact with different new ideas and topics in a really hands on way, hopefully inspiring them to think outside the box. It is a fantastic opportunity for researchers to share their important work and the impact it will have on lives.”

Dr Alexa Ruppertsberg, Head of Public Engagement with Research

The programme is split into four areas of the University:

This year, Be Curious is delighted to be a Child Friendly Leeds Ambassador. There is no need to book, and all activities are free. The full line-up of events can be found on the Be Curious website. 

Faculty of Environment Programme Highlights 

Parkinson Court 

Marvellous Microbes 

Explore the hidden world of microorganisms. Look through the microscope, explore hands-on models, and get creative with a wide range of activities to suit all ages!

How Trees Grow – Light, Rings, Carbon!

Join us and learn all about the power of trees! Make a spinning seed helicopter, paint a magical tree that changes colour in sunlight, and discover the science of how trees store carbon. You can also pick up a self-guided tour of our campus trees!

Bridging Boundaries: Fossils as cultural, historic and scientific objects

Did you know there were fossils found right here in Yorkshire? Come along and see some of the amazing fossils in our collection and hear about the palaeontology research that happens at the University. You can also have a go at creating your own fossil print to take home!

Udderstanding alternatives

Wow, it's udderly outstanding there are so many different kinds of milk besides cow's milk! But today we're going to learn the magic that makes cows milk taste so yummy. When we want to make milk from plants, it's not exactly the same because plants work differently than cows. But don't worry, we can have fun learning how to make plant milk through some cool activities!

Let's Get Climate-Ready!

Draw, make and add your ideas to create a climate-ready picture of our region. Talk to us about climate actions you'd like to see happening in Yorkshire and the Humber. Help design a happier, healthier place for everyone (and everything) living here.

Fighting Floods with Fluid Dynamics

Can you stop the flood?! Step into the shoes of environmental engineers as you embark upon an experiment of your own with our hand operated wave tank. Select your flood defences carefully and see if you can prevent the flood!

Further information

Picture Credit: Simon and Simon Photography. 

For more information, please contact Corporate Communications Officer, Rebecca Hurrey on