Calrossy's Science minds among the State's best
Any student who has faced the Challenge will know the anticipation of the “Bridge Buster” which has become one of the best known and biggest tests in the Science and Engineering Challenge. The challenge is to build a bridge with regulations in time, materials and size… it then gets put to the weight test literally until it breaks.
But the “Bridge Buster” is just one of many challenges which the students face in teams when they take on the Science and Engineering Challenge up against schools across their region. For the second straight year Calrossy’s Year 10 team have won their regional final, up against schools from across the north west, and they have been made it to the State Final. Among the other challenges students design towers to withstand sideways motion in a simulated earthquake, construct Mars rovers with basic suspension to transport loads and sending secret messages though coloured light pulses.
To be held at Newcastle University, in August, Calrossy’s emerging scientists will go up against the State’s other regional winners for bragging rights and a place at the Nationals. Our records show that as a school we have made it to the State finals at least six times in recent years, illustrating just how dynamic the learning and pathways in Science are at Calrossy.
“The challenge allows students to explore scientific and engineering principles through investigation. The skills developed include problem solving, creativity and critical analysis as well as the skills of communication, teamwork and collaboration as the students work in small groups to complete an activity,” says teacher Toni King.
The Science and Engineering challenge is just one example where Calrossy extends the Science curriculum far beyond the classroom.
“The challenge does extend areas of the curriculum, particularly the Working Scientifically Skills, specified in the syllabus. (ie. Questioning and Predicting, Planning and Conducting investigations, Problem Solving and Communicating). It allows students to spend time analysing scenarios and applications, as well as engage to creatively problem solve, construct and test their ideas.”
“The importance of allowing our students to test their science skills and knowledge outside the classroom and in an engaging setting cannot be underestimated,” says Mrs King.
“It is events such as these which can provide inspiration to future careers because they see how their learning can impact things in the real world.”
The job opportunities highlighted by these experiences, some of which are listed below, allow students' to consider their academic selections;
- Civil Engineer
- Mathematical Modeller
- Computer scientist
- Software designer
- Electrical Engineer
Other opportunities offered at Calrossy in Science across year groups to extend their interests and abilities include programs and competitions, such as the Science Olympiad Examinations, Curious Minds and the Da Vinci Decathlon, which can lead to students connecting with subject experts and further explore their interests in Science related fields.