Year 10s Participate in Science and Engineering Challenge

 The Science and Engineering Challenge (SEC) is a nationwide STEM outreach program presented by the University of Newcastle in partnership with communities, Rotary clubs, universities, and sponsors.

Through this program, students experience aspects of science and engineering which they would not usually see in their school environment.

This week, our Year 10 students were involved in the Challenge held at Claremont Showgrounds. It was an exhilarating day for the girls, competing against other schools in fun and engaging hands-on activities, including designing an earthquake-proof tower, building a hovercraft or bridge, providing electricity to a city, or creating an environmentally friendly house. Typically, eight schools competed in the Challenge each day, which ran for a week (a total of 40 schools).

With our 10 Physics students currently completing a project-based program involving a variety of engineering and robotic activities, the SEC provided an opportunity for the girls to further their critical thinking skills and apply their knowledge through some wonderful projects.

Our students stretched themselves with a variety of tasks, which included coming up with a suspension design to build a Mars rover. The aim was to have the rover go through a rough and uneven surface with different loads and not fail.

The girls also experienced network theory and optimisation, communication and decoding signals, creating efficient turbines, and making bionic hands, just to name a few.

“The level of engagement and fun that girls had in a competitive atmosphere was truly amazing.”, says Samantha Dodras, Year 10 Physics teacher.

“At the end of the day, girls described their experience as fabulous, very educational, and challenging”, adds Samantha.

By the sound of things, I think we’ve got some future Physicists in the making!

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