Agriculture
Growing Healthier Tomato Plants
Keeping Bugs Away from Food
Making the most of a meal
Amphibians
Toads
Tree Frogs
Salamanders and Newts
Animals
Navigating by the Light of the Moon
Assembling the Tree of Life
A Meal Plan for Birds
Behavior
Face values
Chimpanzee Hunting Tools
The nerve of one animal
Birds
Penguins
Birds We Eat
Waterfowl
Chemistry and Materials
Fog Buster
Butterfly Wings and Waterproof Coats
Heaviest named element is official
Computers
The Shape of the Internet
Electronic Paper Turns a Page
Galaxies on the go
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Big Fish in Ancient Waters
Middle school science adventures
The bug that may have killed a dinosaur
E Learning Jamaica
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Earth
The Rise of Yellowstone
Coral Islands Survive a Tsunami
Watering the Air
Environment
Swimming with Sharks and Stingrays
Inspired by Nature
When Fungi and Algae Marry
Finding the Past
The Puzzle of Ancient Mariners
A Volcano's Deadly Ash
Stonehenge Settlement
Fish
Puffer Fish
Basking Sharks
Swordfish
Food and Nutrition
Healing Honey
In Search of the Perfect French Fry
Symbols from the Stone Age
GSAT English Rules
Whoever vs. Whomever
Who vs. That vs. Which
Subject and Verb Agreement
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
Scotiabank Jamaica Foundation Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) Scholarships
42,000 students will sit for the GSAT Exam in two weeks
Tarrant High overcoming the odds
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
Access denied - Disabled boy aces GSAT
GSAT Exam Preparation
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
GSAT Mathematics
Detecting True Art
Deep-space dancers
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Human Body
Opening a Channel for Tasting Salt
Electricity's Spark of Life
Sun Screen
Invertebrates
Sea Urchin
Crabs
Octopuses
Mammals
Killer Whales
Numbats
Horses
Parents
What Not to Say to Emerging Readers
Choosing a Preschool: What to Consider
The Surprising Meaning and Benefits of Nursery Rhymes
Physics
Electric Backpack
Dreams of Floating in Space
The Mirror Universe of Antimatter
Plants
Seeds of the Future
Hungry bug seeks hot meal
Farms sprout in cities
Reptiles
Sea Turtles
Box Turtles
Pythons
Space and Astronomy
Roving the Red Planet
The two faces of Mars
No Fat Stars
Technology and Engineering
Dancing with Robots
Musclebots Take Some Steps
Bionic Bacteria
The Parts of Speech
What is a Verb?
Pronouns
Countable and Uncountable Nouns
Transportation
Where rivers run uphill
Reach for the Sky
Robots on the Road, Again
Weather
Science loses out when ice caps melt
Polar Ice Feels the Heat
Warmest Year on Record
Add your Article

Seen on the Science Fair Scene

Every spring, more than 1,000 high school students from around the world compete for millions of dollars in scholarships and other prizes at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF). But prizes aren't the competition's only draw. Science projects are great opportunities to build real-life research experience. And once students experience science fair success, they have opportunities to travel. Along the way, they make friends whom they often see from one competition to the next. At the 2007 ISEF in Albuquerque, N.M., for example, 25 of the 1,500-plus participants were once finalists in the Discovery Channel Young Scientist Challenge (DCYSC), which is held in Washington, D.C. every fall. At DCYSC, 40 of the nation's top middle school science students work in groups to tackle challenges with a scientific theme. They are judged on their problem-solving, teamwork, and communication skills. Their experiences at DCYSC, say these 25 science fair veterans, have served them well at ISEF. "DCYSC helped us learn how to present our ideas to adults," says Sasha Rohret, a 17-year-old senior at the Keystone School in San Antonio, Texas. I [also] got a lot of experience with the scientific method," she says. "I had to work in groups with people I didn't know." From science fairs to Mars At this year's ISEF, Sasha presented the results of her 4-year (and counting) study that explores the possibility of growing plants on Mars. She got the idea after seeing a television program about the Mars rovers, robotic spacecraft that landed on the Red Planet in 2004. Sasha was an eighth-grader at the time. The program said that if people ever wanted to live on Mars, they would need to learn how to grow food there. The idea captured Sasha's imagination, and her work on the subject has already earned her one trip to DCYSC and three trips to ISEF. For her experiments, Sasha has grown plants in volcanic soil that resembles Martian soil. She puts the plants in airtight, gas-filled tanks that mimic the atmospheres of Mars and Earth. Over the years, she has discovered that the relatively large proportion of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the Martian atmosphere is the biggest obstacle to growing plants there. The gas makes up about 97 percent of Mars' atmosphere, compared with less than 0.05 percent of the atmosphere on Earth. Mars' atmosphere is also thinner than Earth's, so more of the sun's radiation hits Mars' surface, Sasha says. Extra radiation is tough on plants. "You would have to alter the Martian atmosphere quite a bit to grow plants on Mars," Sasha concludes. However, she remains optimistic. "I think it will happen." Some day, Sasha would like to be an astrophysicist—an astronomer who specializes in the physical and chemical properties of objects in outer space. And if she ever gets an invitation to explore Mars, she'll leap at the chance. "I would go if I had the opportunity," she says. "I think it would be pretty fun." Science students to the rescue The science fair veterans in Albuquerque tackled a diverse range of subjects, from botany to mechanical engineering. One thing that many of the projects had in common was their attempt to solve important, real-world problems. "I always try to do a project every year that will impact society in a positive way," says Nicholas Ekladyous, 15, now a senior at Cranbrook Kingswood Upper School in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. For his eighth- and ninth-grade projects, Nick aimed to make 15-passenger vans safer. He built a scaled-down model of such a van and then designed a computer program to predict when a real van would be most likely to roll over. The 2-year project earned him a trip to DCYSC in 2004 and to ISEF in 2005. As a sophomore in 2006, Nick attended ISEF with his design of a safer material for padding playground floors. Finally, for ISEF 2007, Nick used computer models to develop a design for car hoods that would be less harmful to pedestrians struck in traffic accidents. "If pedestrians are hit, the chances of death are very high," Nick says. According to Nick, his hood would reduce death and injury to pedestrians by as much as 70 percent compared with current models. He has filed for a patent on his design. Lessons learned The exhibition hall at ISEF can be an intimidating place, filled with row after row of projects with hard-to-pronounce names. Still, the DCYSC veterans seemed to be enjoying the scene—sometimes to their surprise. "DCYSC was the first time I got to go to a national competition," says 16-year-old Lucia Mocz, who conducted her first science fair project in middle school only because it was a class requirement. Lucia is now a junior at Mililani High School in Hawaii. "That was a major force in getting me interested in science," she says. "I did not like science before, but [DCYSC] was just so fun. Now, I want to major in math." Want to experience the science fair scene? First, find a topic you're passionate about, suggest the DCYSC/ISEF veterans. Then, let the investigations begin.

Seen on the Science Fair Scene
Seen on the Science Fair Scene








Designed and Powered by HBJamaica.com™