October 23rd, 2014

Students discover how being a scientist can help our well-being

It was a big day on 20 October at Ecolinc, the specialist science centre in Bacchus Marsh for this LEAP into...Sciences event.

Year 9/10 students from Bacchus Marsh Coll, Phoenix P-12 Community Coll, Olivet Christian Coll and Western Heights SC attended this very informative day to discover more about the work of scientists linked to our well-being. Starting with a presentation by LEAP into...Sciences coordinator, Suzie Greenhill, the 63 students then had the opportunity to participate in two of the three workshops available.

A Science Communication workshop allowed the students to understand the importance of good communication about science, to ensure it was accessible by all in the community. Students undertook activities to see how a science communicator would go about their work and then tested their skills at communication.

Analytical Chemistry was of high importance in the Pharmacology workshop activity. Students donned their white coats, gloves and goggles to carry out the technique of titration, to accurately test the amount of active ingredient in Aspirin. A steady hand and a good eye was required for the measuring and recording of results as well as the titration process. All attending did well to get similar results. They also noted that it was harder than it looked and possibly they would need to be more proactive to become more accurate.

We all take sun screens for granted, but in the third activity, a Formulation Chemistry workshop, students were able to put them to the test and actually try creating their own sunscreen from base ingredients. Again following good methodology, the students mixed their samples and tested them under ultraviolet light to see if their concoctions were effective. There was quite a bit of trial and error, but most definitely a lot of fun.

The day concluded with a second group presentation by Suzie who also talked about her life traveling the world with her scientist partner, helping remote communities to live healthier lives by reducing illness.

Students commented: "I have a chance to become what I want to and it is accessible", "trial and error is important", "how much of a variety of sciences there are", "I learnt about the wide impact of science in everyday life and around the world."

Teachers commented: "fantastic experience! All students really enjoyed it and got a lot out of it.", "What a great day. Thanks."

We look forward to letting you know of more events in the future and reporting back on the successes.

LEAP into… Sciences activities aim to encourage students to consider a career in a science profession. View all Sciences Activities available to your school. 

By: LEAP into...Sciences Team
Categories: Sciences

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