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YK Pao School Students Explore Practical Scientific Solutions

April, 2016
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As part of the ‘Group 4 Project’, Year 11 students in YK Pao School were assigned to explore scientific solutions in the event of a zombie apocalypse: Only Year 11 were left in the school after a virus eradicated the rest of humanity. They were tasked with making the school secure, providing food and water, as well as making electricity. They were expected to plan out the day (10 hours in total) to include a range of experiments to help them best decide on solutions to these problems.

yk-pao-science-solutionsIn one scenario, students were tasked to consider purifying water for human consumption from the river or rainwater throughout the time they were confined to the campus grounds.

Many chose to try distilling the water after filtering large organic matter. They could then research how much water a typical person needed to stay alive and how much energy was needed to distill the required amount.

In addition, they needed to consider how they would chemically treat the water so that they could store it and subsequently not poison themselves while consuming the water. Equipment was provided but students had to safely distill the water and make their own calculations.

Many found that this method would require high amounts of energy, and concluded that rainwater would also have to be considered as a suitable source, implying the need to research the typical expected rainfall in the area.

The day ended with a display of each groups’ work. The ‘Group 4 Project’ is an interdisciplinary science investigation and a requirement of the IB Diploma program, in which all Year 11 students are expected to work together to solve various science-related problems.


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