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‘Glass: More Than Meets The Eye’ was this year’s theme for Science Week to celebrate the United Nations International Year of Glass. It’s amazing to think about how glass is used in the world around us.

This article was written on computers with glass screens, and is being transported through optical fibres, and you may be reading it with glasses on a mobile glass screen. Glass has many interesting properties as it becomes liquid when heated yet it can also be hard, smooth and brittle.

Following this year’s Science Week ‘glass’ theme, Year 3 were assigned a task of creating a magnifying ‘glass’ a convex or curved piece of plastic with water to magnify text. Prep students replicated the glass making process by making their own stain glass biscuits using crushed lollies. The students discovered that the ‘lolly’ glass became a liquid in the oven, but once cooled, it returned to a solid state. Year 5 learnt about processes of heating and cooling gold at Sovereign Hill.

Preps with their stained glass biscuit

Weaving STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) into authentic cross-curriculum investigations helps students see how STEM influences our everyday lives and raises natural curiosity. Last week, Year 3 and Year 4 participated in a Coding Edge incursion and coded robots to carry rubbish to the correct recycling bin, providing a link to our current focus on reducing rubbish.

Last week in Prep, the word of the week was ‘duck’ so quacking ducks were made and became an engaging science investigation arousing wonder. The students discovered that the wet sponge sliding down the string created vibrations that were amplified by the cup. Prep students were also invited to record on SeeSaw an experiment completed at home. Each day, our budding Prep scientists shared their joy and wonder as they viewed experiments about ‘bouncing’ eggs, lava fountains, ‘skittle’ rainbows, and spinning paper spirals.  

Year 4 students in their CodingEdge Incursion

We are keen to enhance girls’ engagement and enjoyment in STEM subjects at school as we know that it significantly influences their aspirations to pursue further education and careers in these fields. Some students in Year 6 attended the Go Girl, Go For IT conference to learn about current and emerging STEM careers. Meanwhile, other Year 6 students investigated the physics involved in the construction of some elaborate and very artistic marble runs, adding the A (for the Arts) into STEAM!

An integrated Science curriculum addresses all areas of science including physical, chemical, biological, earth and space science. Younger students learn how to pose questions and observe the natural world while older students learn about scientific method and make predictions and conclusions.

Science Week helped students view science through a new lens and see that the world of science is a world of wonder and fun - and how it offers much more than meets the eye.

Mrs Helen Moore
Head of Junior School