Last Thursday, 2 teams of Year 7 scientists went to Shrewsbury School to take part in the inaugural Darwin Science Challenge. The day was broken up into 4 parts. In the morning were 9 rounds of questions and activities. There were the traditional questions e.g. which planet does the moon Ganymede belong to, mixed in with activity rounds which involved photograph recognition, identifying smells in bottles and various noises as well as identifying mysterious looking objects on a table.

The team challenge rounds took place after lunch, one each for Biology, Chemistry and Physics. For the Biology challenge the teams were given a tub of bones and had to build and label a skeleton. The only clue to the animal’s identity was that it was a distant relative of humans. It turned out to be a rabbit! The Chemistry challenge saw pupils neutralise acids, make a silver mirror using silver nitrate and build the highest column possible out of sodium acetate. Using nothing but straws, scissors and blue tack, the Physics challenge was to build a structure to hold a tennis ball the highest distance off the ground for 10 seconds. After all the teams had competed, the Terra Nova team consisting of William, Emma, Helen and Jalia won the challenge. As the Head of Physics said, the tower got 1/10 for looks, but it was the best at doing the job it was asked to do!

The eight pupils who took part in the quiz and challenges were William, Emma, Helen, Jalia, Katie, Orlando, Joseph and Ella. They represented the school magnificently and set the bar high for next year’s quiz teams.

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