Science in the Stadtwald

Group 4 Project Presentation, September 2015

One of the highlights of our Open House day was the science presentations delivered by our Grade 12 students. As part of their IB science course, students work together on a scientific topic to “encourage an understanding of the relationships between scientific disciplines and the

overarching nature of the scientific method”.*

This year the students decided to study various properties of the ponds and lake in the Cologne Stadtwald. The experimental work involved aspects of Biology, Chemistry and ESS (Environmental Systems and Societies). Experiments included pH analysis, a study of water turbidity, and biodiversity. The students designed the experiments and formed hypotheses before setting off for the Stadtwald.

The culmination of the project was a presentation given to students of Grades 9 & 10 and parents visiting our Open House Day. All of the students were able to speak in a knowledgeable and engaging way. Instead of listening passively, students and a parent from the audience were invited to demonstrate some of the field experiments completed in the Stadtwald. Instead of subjecting the audience to death by PowerPoint,

the students used lab equipment, a demonstration of the Graphic Display Calculator and generous doses of humour. The application of science to the real world was very clear.

At the end of the presentation, the students reflected on their methods and on whether they would make any changes if they repeated the experiment. This type of experiential learning is very important to the IB Diploma programme and we are sure that the skills learnt will be useful in later life.

Everyone worked well as a team when carrying out the experiments and during the presentations. Many thanks to the students involved: Anela, Bryan, Chloe, Eric, Evita, Eydis, Nina and Philipp. Thank you to Mrs Mutie and Mr Nolan for their advice and direction.

The next stop on Grade 12’s IB journey is the Extended Essay. More information will follow soon.

*IB Biology guide, the Group 4 project