Science Week

Science Week

National Science Week 2021 revolves around the theme Food: Different by Design. Honouring the United Nations International Year of Fruits and Vegetables and the International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development.

At the Prep School we all enjoy Science and could not think of a better way to celebrate than making cooking videos for boys and their families to explore.

Busy in the kitchen each day, new cooking videos were shared with the boys in Time for More, featuring Miss Newton and many special guests including Mr Wyatt, Mrs Hitz-Morton, Mrs Evans, Mr Lever and Ms Gabbe. It has been wonderful to see the younger boys spending time with their families in the kitchen cooking, as well as older boys preparing food for their families. 

Pre-Kindergarten: Going Bananas

This week in STEAM Pre-Kindergarten students have been exploring the PYP concept of ‘change’ to investigate the ripening process of a banana. Using their scientific thinking the boys choose a location for their banana, whether it be next to an avocado, in the sun or maybe on top of the fridge. On Friday they began documenting their progress by taking photos and using their observation skills. I wonder what the best way to speed up the banana ripening process will be?

At each TEAMs check-in this week Pre-Kindergarten boys have been sharing a meal or food they have prepared in their kitchens at home. The boys have been encouraged to think about the ingredients, process and changes that happen when preparing foods. For some boys this was their first ever experience in the kitchen. 

Kindergarten: Investigating Push and Pull Forces

Using design thinking skills to create push and pull toys, Kindergarten have been exploring the PYP concept of ‘causation’ in their inquiry into forces in motion. The boys have enjoyed putting their forces to the test and determining if they should use soft or hard forces. When constructing the catapults, it was determined that a hard push force was needed to make the ball fly, whereas when creating the pull carts a soft pull was required to make their carts move otherwise the wheels would fall off.

Year 1: Engineering Chip Packaging

Throughout this term, Year 1 were exploring chip packaging using the PYP concepts of ‘form’ and ‘function’. Busy working through the design process, the boys worked on developing a prototype. Utilising recycled materials from around their home the boys designed and made their own chip packaging before conducting experiments and improving their designs. Last week the boys summarised their learning and created flow charts reflecting on the design process. 

Year 2: Scratch Jr Cooking Challenge

In our new STEAM Unit of Inquiry into coding, Year 2 have been using their computational thinking skills to create animations using Scratch Jr. Exploring the PYP concept of ‘connection’ between Science Week and their coding unit the boys were tasked with the challenge of creating a food or cooking themed Scratch animation.

Follow the links below to explore some of the boy’s Scratch creations:

Jonathan 2C

Vino 2G

Darren 2P

Year 3: Change of State Science Experiments

Year 3 are exploring the PYP concept of ‘form’ and ‘change’ in their Unit of Inquiry about change of stage. Using their scientific thinking the boys have been conducting a new experiment in their kitchen each week. Creating underwater fireworks, testing if all liquids freeze and forming their own cloud, exploring the different states of solids, liquids and gases.

Year 4: Food Science Show Virtual Excursion

In STEAM this week Year 4 engaged in a food science virtual excursion run by ‘SciFest 2021’. Filled with experiments the boys watched and discovered new and exciting things about food and the science behind some of the foods we eat. During this online session the boys communicated with Miss Newton over Google Docs asking questions to the presenter. August Li, Ethan Ho and Ethan Lam were all lucky enough to have their questions answered live during the presentation.

In the live stream, Ben talked about food. He started with experiments and taught us that salt actually makes sugar taste better. He mixed different liquids and taught us that labels on drinks can lie. We have learned much about the values and dangers of sugar and how it can give energy but is unhealthy. His main message is that you have to be healthy and can sometimes have sweetness but need protein as well. – Aarav Sharma 4P

In the live stream, Ben (the host) was doing science experiments. He told us the steam from the nitrogen is cold and you can actually get frostbite from it. He blew the liquid nitrogen out of his nose and mouth by eating cheese balls with nitrogen sprayed on it. – Matthew Della Torre 4B

When you look at orange juice you think of a nutritious sour and sweet drink. But when you look into it you will find yourself a very sugary drink. It might have a lot of Vitamin C in the drink, but the sugar can overpower it. A little bit of sugar will give you a lot of energy so you can do some exercise or things that take up a lot of energy such as lifting something heavy. – Daniel Huang 4M

Fun Fact: Sport drinks that people drink after sport have a lot of sugar to give energy but also have salt to give salt back because you lose it when you sweat. – Julian Ang 4B

Year 5: How We Organise Ourselves: ‘Economic systems influence the distribution of wealth in society’

Could you pitch an idea to Shark Tank? Year 5 are thinking about the PYP Concept of ‘perspective’ – what makes an idea have worth or value. They will then use this knowledge in the design cycle to propose an invention; cost out the materials in Maths and pitch their proposal using their persuasive communication skills. 

Elijah – “If it solves a problem for the earth or even just your community then it is a valuable idea”

Rory – “People need to want the product or service”

Kevin – “It being unique”

Massimo – “It is valuable if the idea is not copied and is original”

Year 6: Sharing the Planet: ‘Societal narratives are shaped through patterns of peace and conflict’

In STEAM students are focusing on the PYP Concepts of Responsibility, Connection and Causation to consider how animal and plant adaptation is a response to challenge, risk or opportunity. They completed a SWOT analysis on the White Ibis and what makes this species so successful in our cities and are using this knowledge to begin coding a virtual city (using CoSpaces Edu) for the Ibis demonstrating its behaviours.

Oscar’s CoSpaces Edu
Juan’s CoSpace Edu

Fiona Evans and Jessica Newton | STEAM Teachers

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