Science projects at San Andrea senior school
San Andrea Senior School’s Science and Technology Department recently organised its annual science soiree and the 13th edition of the Stephen Hawking science and technology project.
The Stephen Hawking project is a compulsory event for all Grade 11 (Form 4) students held over one scholastic year before they sit for their ‘O’ Levels.
They work in groups of three to present a written researched and investigative assignment not necessarily based on set topics of the certification syllabus.
They also give a public viva voce presentation on the topic at a seminar, and demonstrate their understanding of the chosen topic using visual aids, audiovisual resources, 3-D models, experiments and any other means.
Seminars and discussions were held throughout the year as an extra-curricular activity during midday breaks supervised by the science teachers during which a shortlist of the best groups was made. The final presentation of the shortlisted projects was held in the presence of parents and an independent adjudicating panel.
The presentations this year included a wide variety of topics, including ways to economise on the school’s electrical consumption, effects of the weight of school bags on the spine, light factors affecting the photovoltaic energy generation, energy generated by different turbines, conditions for mushroom farming, plant growth under different frequencies, the most effective electric kettle, tensile strength of the hair, and many others.
The team judged to have the best presentation was composed of Jeremy Borg Myatt, Andrew Cutajar and Elena Pocock, who conducted an investigation to identify the best sound insulating materials at different frequencies. The school presented the group a return ticket for an educational visit abroad.
This year’s science soiree included the presentation of all the science and technology projects that took part in the Stephen Hawking project, as well as projects by the Graphical Communications students and interactive experimentsin Physics, Chemistry and Biology bystudents from various grades.
In addition, several local entities were this year invited to take part in the soiree to help make science more relevant to the students.
The Health Department presented an anti-smoking campaign, whereas Sedqa presented information about the danger of drugs.
Nature Trust Malta, Wasteserv and Parks’ presence encouraged the students to understand the beauty of nature and their natural environment. Pots with compost and seeds of Aleppo pine (żnuber), carob (ħarrub), sandarac gum (għargħar) and other trees were distributed.
Integrated Marketing Services’ stand exhibited robots and other interactive educational resources.
Microsoft Partners in Learning provided a educational planetarium helping the Department to improve the education and learning experience through ICT. This was the first time this planetarium was erected at a school in Malta.
Mr Borg is Science and Technology Coordinator at San Andrea School.