Three Mile 108 Elementary students brought home awards for their “unique” projects at the Cariboo Mainline Regional Science Fair.
The regional science fair was hosted inside the gymnasium at the Thompson Rivers University from April 10 to 12.
Around the region, the top science projects constructed by elementary and high school students were submitted for judging, and some received awards such as medals and money.
Just before March Break, Mile 108 Elementary held their first, school-wide science fair.
Principal Ken Lucks said the students did exceptionally well, explaining their thought processes, progression and the outcomes of their projects.
“Roughly 60 projects were on display inside our school from students in Grades 3 to 7,” said Lucks. “We had about eight projects in total that we felt could move on and compete in the district science fair that was hosted in Williams Lake on March 14.”
Of the eight, two projects moved forward to compete in the regional fair, including one by Grade 6 student Ahmed Omer and Grade 7 student Colin Birtwistle.
Omer and Birtwistle tested the effect of smoking cigarettes in comparison to vaping. For the project, the boys took two plastic water bottles and stuck wet cotton balls inside each. Then they used smoke from five cigarettes and vapor from 5 milliliters of e-liquid, and found that cigarettes had the biggest effect.
“We know high school students vape and we know that cigarettes are bad, so we wanted to test the effects of each,” said Omer. “The best part was being able to present our project.”
Birtwistle said he really enjoyed taking a tour of the university.
Grade 7 student Kaitlyn Piccolo also went to regionals, with her project that tested the effects of music on plant growth.
Piccolo began her project by planting three different bean seeds in little cups. Two beans were grown with different genres of music playing — pop and metal music — and the other bean was grown with no music.
Piccolo played music from Slipknot, Rage Against the Machine, Miley Cyrus and One Direction to see if vibrations through sound waves would affect the growing process.
“I tried the experiment twice,” she said. “The first attempt, the bean with pop music sprouted first, followed by the bean without music. The third bean with metal music never sprouted.”
For the second attempt, Piccolo said the growth pattern was the same until the bean with grown with pop music died and the bean with no music grew the most.
“My grandma would sing to her plants and I wanted to see if this theory really worked,” she said. “I really liked seeing the different results.”
Piccolo went home with a few awards in hand, earning a gold medal for her project and the agriculture in the classroom award, including best junior and student choice award.
“I think it was a big shock for the students to see what they can achieve, when they work for it,” said Lucks.