Young Scientist Competition

Zhi Han Chew By Zhi Han Chew, 9th Jul 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Personal Experiences

This article shows my personal experience in a school.

I Hate to write section title when my though is blank >.<

Few days ago, Hanif and I were so lucky to be chosen as the participants to a competition called ‘Scientist Muda’ (Or Young Scientist in English). It was an inter-regional competition that was held in a secondary school and targeted towards secondary students. The purposes of this competition were to acquire scientific knowledge, sharpen experimental skills and also build up scientific noble values of the participants. The experiments tested our curiosity towards science and knowledge, honesty and accuracy in recording complex data, responsibility about the safety of oneself and others and the confidence on trying something new.

It was a competition consisting of several interesting experiments. The time to carry out each experiment is limited, and after the time was up, the whistle would be immediately blew by the teachers in charge and that was the time for the participants to line up and move to the next lab. There would be no tolerance to the participants who managed their time unwisely.

There were three sessions during the competition and unfortunately we were set to be in the first session – the session that the students would have the least time to revise and the shortest time to physically and emotionally prepare well. After a short break, we were assigned to the laboratory upstairs which was also the first site of the competition.

The first experiment was about the Form 3 Chapter 7’s subtopic, that is, electromagnet. Both of us were so panic that we neither learnt nor touched that chapter before. We were totally confused with the apparatus and materials given – an iron nail, a wire, around 100 staples and a low power electric generator. After a short discussion (and also argument), we trussed up the iron nail using the wire for about 10 times. After that, we conducted the trussed wire with the electric generator and set the voltage to 2V. The staples were carefully put near the iron nail and the number of staples attached was recorded. Also, the steps were repeated in the voltage of 4V, 6V and 8V to relate the manipulated variable and responding variable, that are, the voltage and the amount of staples attached respectively. The conclusion was formed and the hypothesis was accepted. The whistle sound was heard and we went go the next lab.

With the apparatus and materials given in the next experiment, that are, a candle, a lighter, a basin, a metre rule and a gas jar, we smartly guessed that the experiment was definitely about the composition of air. Firstly, Hanif accurately measured and recorded the height of gas jar that his eye was perpendicular to the scale to avoid parallax error. Also, he half-filled the basin with water. The candle lighted up by me was then covered by the gas jar and the whole set was placed on a support that was upright the basin. The candle was then extinguished and the height of the water raised up was recorded. We had made a big mistake that we did not cover the candle in a fast manner. At last, our result was made wrongly.

Came to the third experiment, it was not an experiment actually, but a common sense testing. It tested us the knowledge of the shapes and the arrangements of the twelve constellations by calling us to draw the four constellations shown on the grass ground downstairs. I fully depended him in this test as he skilfully drew the 4 constellations given and answer the questions affirmatively.

The fourth experiment tested our sense about the acid and the alkali. Five types of vegetables, pestle and mortal, five test tubes and a small bottle of universal indicator were given. The experiment was quite simple that we just needed to crush the vegetables and measure whether they are acidic or alkaline. But at last, it was a big and funny fail that we enjoyed too much in crushing the vegetables and only two out of five of the properties of the vegetables were found and the time was over. Wrote until here, I smiled and laughed towards my former self.

The last experiment was an outdoor experiment. The apparatus and materials given were a bottle with five tiny holes, plasticine, a 250ml beaker and a metre rule. From these we knew that, the experiment was about the air pressure. The bottle’s holes were closed by the plasticine and fully filled with water. We placed the metre rule on the ground and the bottle was placed behind it. The first hole was opened and the height of the water come out from the hole was recorded. The steps were repeated with the next five holes. Until now, I still don’t know why the other teams ended up neatly and our place was that messy.

In these series of experiments, we did learn a lot of things even though we didn’t won any prize. We had have a deeper understanding to the word ’science’ that science is neither sitting in the laboratory and conducting the experiment fully guided by the teacher, nor doing the exercises endlessly until PMR arrives. Science is the discovery of the information about the world we live by using various experiments and smart guesses.

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Competition, Scientist, Scientist Muda

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author avatar Zhi Han Chew
I Like Arguing Argumentative Arguments Argumentatively...

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author avatar Md Rezaul Karim
9th Jul 2012 (#)

Nicely written article. Thank you for sharing.

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author avatar A K Rao
17th Jul 2012 (#)

The participation is imporatnt thatn winning ! You had a nice experience of the Science experiments competition! Nice sharing!

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12th Aug 2012 (#)

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