Science Eco-Dome Part 3

In our most recent eco-dome build, there were lots of mistakes and one of them was that we still added way too much water in the eco-dome because it condensed and filled the eco-dome with droplets of water that could have limited the oxygen supply of the crickets. Also, with so much water in the eco-dome, there should have been enough water for the plants to stay healthy and survive, but they still ended up dying and we assume this is from the lack of sunlight. As you can see in our pictures, the plants look healthy and this was the case for the first couple days but later as time moved on without anything for the plants to create energy, the plants started to die. We think that next time we do not need to add as much water as before and we need to position the new eco-dome in another spot with more sunlight to allow the plants to create the energy that is needed. We used our observations to create another plan for the eco-dome that would benefit the cricket and the plants. We also researched and found that plants can die from too much water and so we took this into account and made sure that we did not put too much water for the plants to die. We also researched about plants and which plant does a better job of giving out oxygen. We found that different types of plants had different levels of oxygen output and with that knowledge, we put all sorts of different plants in our Eco-Dome to make sure that the crickets got the oxygen they needed.

Observations

Component Amount incl Units Reasoning Daily Observations
Dirt 2 inches above bottom Dirt will house the plants and give a soft area for the crickets to walk and jump around on The dirt held all the nutrients and water for the plants to survive but after a couple days, the plants died and we are not sure why this happened.
Plants 3-4 different plant This time we want to see what would happen if we added different plants. Different plants produce a different amount of oxygen. The crickets are still alive and we think this is the different plants that are providing the crickets with oxygen.
Water 50ml for plants and soil 20 ml for drinking purposes The water will make the soil moist and damp so that the cricket can survive. We also added less water to this build. The water evaporated on the first day but since there was an airtight seal, the water stayed inside the eco-dome which kept the plants watered
Paper Towel rolls 1 This acts as a little housing for the crickets so that they can have somewhere to hide from the heat and sleep The cricket loves to hide inside the paper towel roll and uses it as a way to hide from the intense sun.
Petri dish for water 1 bowl of water The crickets need water to drink so we added a water bowl for them to drink from. The cricket seems to drink from the bowl of water and eat the fruits we gave them.

 

Condensation from previous Eco-Dome

Plants used in Eco-Dome

Paper tube providing shade for crickets

Plastic wrap to ensure air-tight seal

Science Eco-Dome Part 2

The first thing we noticed when opening the Eco-Dome was that our plants died and we had to find a way to change that. Our solution was to add a lot more dirt around the plants and spray the dirt with lots of water so that all that dirt could hold the water and slowly water the plants. The plants are the only source of oxygen that the cricket has and we need to keep the plants alive as long as possible to maximize the oxygen level in the Eco-Dome. We also noticed that the Eco-Dome had lots of condensation which meant that we have left the cricket with way too much water in its drinking cup which had evaporated in the first couple days and left the Eco-Dome to be looking completely fogged up. In an airtight container, the water will end up condensing, creating little bubbles of water that will stick to the side of the eco-come. An example of this could be seen in the first photo of the plant from the outside of the eco-dome. The condensation will end up blocking the clear sides of the eco-dome giving the plant a hard time finding sunlight to create energy. Instead of adding 70ml of water for the plants, we will only add 50ml. We noticed that the cricket would use the toilet paper roll as its main source of shade when it got too hot from the sun and he or she really seemed to enjoy the paper towel tube so we decided to keep it there for the cricket.

 

 

Observations

Component Amount incl Units Reasoning Daily Observations
Dirt 2 inches above bottom Dirt will house the plants and give a soft area for the crickets to walk and jump around on The dirt held all the nutrients and water for the plants to survive but after a couple days, the plants died and we are not sure why this happened.
Plants 1-2 plant We only need a couple plants for oxygen and maybe the crickets will feed on the plants for extra food The plants seemed to help the cricket but they died after a couple days which meant there was no more oxygen for the cricket to take in.
Water 70ml for plants and soil 40 ml for drinking purposes The water will make the soil moist and damp so that the cricket can survive. The water evaporated on the first day but since there was an air tight seal, the water stayed inside the ecodome and that water went back into the soil feeding the plants
Paper Towel rolls 1 This acts as a little housing for the crickets so that they can have somewhere to hide from the heat and sleep The cricket loves to hide inside the paper towel roll and uses it as a way to hide from the intense sun.
Bowls for food and water 2 (one for water and one for food) We need this because the water would just spill everywhere and we do not want to crowd the crickets with extra food that will disturb their daily lives The cricket seems to drink from the bowl of water and eat from the bowl of food once every couple days.

 

Here shows that there is still some condensation going on in the eco-dome

On the top, we used plastic wrap to ensure that there is an air-tight seal

 

On the left was our choice for the first plant in our eco-dome

Our second plant inside the eco-dome

Science Eco-dome Part 1

In science, we are learning about our earth and how it functions from the earth atmosphere to the nutrient cycles. Our final project would test how well we know all of this information by building an eco-dome that will house a couple crickets for the longest amount of time possible. Our first attempt worked really well as our cricket survived for about 2 weeks. The plants died and that was a big drawback because, without the plants, the cricket only has a couple hours and maybe a day to survive before they would run out of oxygen. We added around 40ml for drinking and sprayed 70ml of water around the dome, soil, and on the plants. The eco-dome turned out to be very foggy on the plastic panels and my inference would be that there was too much water and that water condensed out to the surface and sides of the eco-dome as you can see in the second picture.

 

Observations

Component Amount incl Units Reasoning Daily Observations
Dirt 2 inches above bottom Dirt will house the plants and give a soft area for the crickets to walk and jump around on The dirt held all the nutrients and water for the plants to survive but after a couple days, the plants died and we are not sure why this happened.
Plants 1-2 plant We only need a couple plants for oxygen and maybe the crickets will feed on the plants for extra food The plants seemed to help the cricket but they died after a couple days which meant there was no more oxygen for the cricket to take in.
Water 70ml for plants and soil 40 ml for drinking purposes The water will make the soil moist and damp so that the cricket can survive. The water evaporated on the first day but since there was an airtight seal, the water stayed inside the
Paper Towel rolls 1 This acts as a little housing for the crickets so that they can have somewhere to hide from the heat and sleep The cricket loves to hide inside the paper towel roll and uses it as a way to hide from the intense sun.
Bowls for food and water 2 (one for water and one for food) We need this because the water would just spill everywhere and we do not want to crowd the crickets with extra food that will disturb their daily lives The cricket seems to drink from the bowl of water and eat from the bowl of food once every couple days.
Apple A couple for eating (depending on the amount of crickets) This will be their main source of food because fruits will provide all the basic vitamins for staying alive. The apples had mold on them after a couple days and was inedible for the crickets

 

If you look carefully you can see the antennas of the cricket through the tube

Condensation from the water inside the eco-dome

Through the fog, you see a stick that the cricket would perch on

 

Student Led Conferences Language Arts

Hardest Part about Journalism? Why?

 

The hardest part about Journalism was probably changing my language to make my journal less conversational because that is not what a journalism article is, its straight to the point and nothing else. This was a challenge that took me a couple weeks to get the hang of, but right when I got it, it changed my paper and made it a lot better. I think if I had looked back at my notes, then maybe I could have done this quicker and have more time to work on the layout of the article.

 

What was your greatest achievement? Why?

 

I think my greatest achievement was my final article because I worked so hard on it and modeled it after a new york times article. Halfway through making the layout of the newspaper, I started making the article because I actually wanted to learn, not because I wanted a good grade, and it actually turned out to be really fun in the end! I worked with megan who helped me with some mistakes and gave me some advice on the layout. At the end, I think my team and I did a great job on the newspaper!

 

What will you work on 2nd quarter? Anything?

 

Next quarter, I know that Mr. Benck treats me like an adult and has a very structured system for teaching and grading his class. He makes us write lots of notes at the beginning of a unit or project and I think that next quarter, I will always look at my notes and listen to all the advice that he gives me because that is how I will learn the most and get the best grade. This quarter was a great quarter and I learned a lot!

Renaissance Fair

For the Renaissance fair, we had to choose what topic we wanted to study and present at the fair. I buddied up with Ian and together we wanted to present about surgery and dissection. Someone already took the general topic of surgery, so we dove deep and chose the most revolutionary role player in the world of dissection today, Andreas Vesalius. We set up a poster at the fair that would give all the details that would assist them in the activity that we prepared. The activity we made was a board game that would help to stick all the information we taught them into their heads. The game was very simple, you were asked to role a die twice and tally up the total number of what you rolled. Once finished rolling, you would then pick up a question card and answer based on the information that we have given you, or referring to the poster we made. If the player successfully answers the question, they move the number of steps they rolled with the die. If the player is unsuccessful with their role, then they stay where they are and the same question is passed onto the player next to them. A very simple game, that will stick very complicated information in the brains of the kids! That was our goal, to try to find a way to teach the kids while not too over complicate things. This was technically the second fair I’ve been too, and definitely the one I will remember!

 

 

 

Renaissance Role Play

So basically, what we did for our fun little games, is role play a character from the renaissance and in that case, I was the best of all best armorers. I, for one, could see the world and see things before they happen. I would make the greatest of great armor and swords, better than that shabby blacksmith over the block, ugh, he makes me want to puke. As an armorer, I would go through the beautiful town I live in and look for jobs, because, you know, the greens are getting low around this time without any fights. Anyways, back to me, I learned a lot in that little section of role playing. I learned that Medici could do whatever he wanted as he was the most powerful person in Florence. Also, art was a big thing back then and people like Botticelli and Da Vinci would get sponsored and paid to make beautiful works of art. Wine and beer were a big part of the Renaissance because they contained alcohol and was safer to drink than water. The reason being, water has bacteria in it and you can die, but people that drink beer, they stay alive. Even kids would drink beer, but beer with a very small percentage of alcohol, enough to kill all the bacteria. Funny, I always thought they only drank water! But, being in Florence, we did not have a beer brewer, we had a winemaker cause in that part of Italy, they drank wine. I really liked this role playing and I would choose this any day over a regular project. It really helped the class come together and learn in ways that we never thought about.

 

Don’t Panic

In math, we watched a video about the statistics of the world on poverty called don’t panic. It was a pretty long but very informative video that had a lot about poverty in the world and how much of it there is. Some things that I found very interesting in the video was when it showed a graph that showed the different countries moving up and down on a graph representing the poverty levels. I think that the video helped me with my life because it made me think about the things that I do every day because that graph really showed me the true poverty of the world. I wonder how the world is doing today and if it is really possible to end poverty at the rate we are at.

Tutorial Video and Reflection

So for this project, we were representing a charity that we wanted to donate too. For example, my partners were Shayan, Peter and I. We were representing smile bank and we gathered information on their website as well as their facebook page. After that, we made a video that had to be between 2-4 minutes explaining and persuading why they should donate to that charity. One way that we persuaded the audience was through the use of examples and detail. We gave examples of what the kids were going through and how they suffered from agent orange. Through the use of examples and detail, we appealed to the audience’s emotions by making them feel sad  when putting them in their shoes and showing the audience how hard their life is. Then we switch the engines and make them feel happy when talking about what the charity has done for the affected kids. Editing our videos had a lot to do with it as well because we used the appropriate music for the appropriate times. We used lot of visuals and we made sure that the visuals matched what we were talking about. Speaking of voice, we made sure that we used appropriate tone for the appropriate situation. For example, we used a sad and slow tone when talking about the bad and sad parts, but used more of a tone that would go along the situation when talking about the good stuff and about what the charity is doing to help. This project reminds me of the video we did for dragon’s apprentice on giving advice to the 6th graders on what to do and what not to do. This was a great project and I always love making videos because it’s just something that I connect with. I hope we do something like this in the future.

Science Quarter 2

So for this quarter of science, we designed a water filter that would filter all the bad stuff from the water and let us drink the good water. We were trying to stay very minimal with the resources that we used because in Vietnam, not a lot of people have access to a lot of heavy duty things. After the filter, we were supposed to test the water’s copper levels, ph, salt level, and turbidity level. We had to have a ph of 7 because that is the normal ph that all drinkable water has. We also had to have clear water and lower that 100 ppm of copper.

So for my group, we wanted to make a filter out of a bottle because there are a lot of random bottles that you can find on the ground of Vietnam. So we looked for some other ideas online and they all suggested that we made a filter out of a water bottle. Of course, there are other things that we could do, but some of the ideas just did not make any sense because it would either take a long time to filter, or the resources were not available to many in Vietnam. So we settled for a bottle idea with layers of crushed charcoal, sand, and tissue.

filter

Our first prototypes were something that we made with very little time. We made this prototype very quickly and this was just a basic outline of our final product. What we thought we were going to do was that we were going to build a stand and place the bottle in the stand so that we do not have to hold the bottle when the water is pouring down. We succeeded and we were very happy with our results, but compared to what we made our final, it is uncomparable. We used some layers of charcoal and sand and some cloth. This was some good key components that really made our filter, filter our clean water.

screen-shot-2016-12-13-at-9-51-57-pm

So for the next prototype, we built a stronger structure and used some more elements to our filter. We first washed the charcoal so that there was no black residue coming off the charcoal. This helped a lot because if we did not do this, we could have had black tainted water and that first, does not make it look drinkable, and second, the filter did not do its job of filtering. We later made sure that the coal was washed and we used some clean cloth to filter the big parts out. This time we have some tissue at the top so that it can filter most of the bad stuff first and then filter again ensuring a clean final product.

screen-shot-2016-12-13-at-9-51-42-pm

For our final, we followed everything we did and we came out with a very nice and very good product that really did its job in terms of filtering out the nasty stuff. We do not have the full results, but I know that the water came out as acidic which was not great but I am pretty sure that it is the case because of when we boiled it. This turned the water very yellow and I am pretty sure boiling it activated the salt in the water and just made the water very acidic. The turbidity was clear so that was great and our copper levels were really high, about 300 ppm. We do not know about the salt levels and that will be a big part and I hope that the salt levels is very minimal.

screen-shot-2016-12-13-at-9-51-23-pm

Overall, I am pretty sure my team did a very good job but I was alone of the last and final day so I did not have any help and that would have made my work much more efficient because, with help, I can get through things very quickly without a hassle. I thought that I did a pretty decent on my own and I thought that this project really helped us realize what type of water some people are suffering to drink.

Science Prototype

Have you assessed your prototype’s effectiveness?

Not yet, but we did see that the turbidity is clear. There is nothing in the glass instead of filtered water. Next class, my group will test the Ph and the copper. We will also test other things that need to be tested. But the water is not through its full “clean” state yet. Next time, we will have to boil the water so that it can get rid of all the bacteria.

What are the results of tests done?

We did the turbidity test and we were able to confidently say that the turbidity is clear. This was a real highlight because that meant our filter worked to a certain extent. Next time, we will do more tests so that we can say that our filter works and we can drink the water.

What do you need to do to improve your prototype?

Next time, we need to use a little bit more charcoal and chop in up into smaller bits because big charcoal cannot really filter very well, we need to have small chunks so that it can really filter out those small bits that are not good for the human body. I think that next time, we can also use a bit less cotton because it is not really necessary, but besides that, we did great.

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