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Nick Hannesson, a Grade 7 student at École Stanley Knowles School, researched how bioplastic is better for the environment than regular plastic.

Next generation of scientists show off work

April 11, 2019 — 

More than 400 students showed off their projects at the 49th annual Winnipeg School Division Science Fair held at the University of Manitoba’s Bannatyne campus on April 10.

The budding researchers from 34 schools had 260 projects on display. The students, in Grades 4 to 12, presented research ranging from how to make Wi-Fi faster to examining aerodynamics to how sugar affects one’s focus.

Nick Hannesson proudly showed off his project entitled Do You Even Bioplastic Bro? The Grade 7 student at École Stanley Knowles School looked at how bioplastic is better for the environment than regular plastic.

“I think it’s really fun to be here with all the other students and be able to talk with all the judges about sciencey things,” he said.

The students were divided into different age categories and judged according to a range of disciplines – everything from engineering to physics to biology.

Ivan Semenov, a Grade 8 student at Grant Park High School, displays his project entitled What is the Effect of Different Materials on Sound Power?

Dr. James Gilchrist, director of the Biomedical Youth Program (BYP) and professor of oral biology, Dr. Gerald Niznick College of Dentistry, said that the science fair is important for several reasons.

“First, it acts as a showcase for the great work that teachers and kids put in developing project ideas and bringing them to life,” he said. “Second, it offers an opportunity for kids of all ages to be inspired by the work and interest of their peers in science. Students with projects gain experience at being able to explain what they’ve done.”

Gilchrist said that it is advantageous to hold the science fair on the Bannatyne campus because it brings inquisitive minds closer to the university experience.

“It is very inspirational for grade school kids to actually be here and interact with university students and faculty,” he said. “There is a tangible buzz throughout the entire day at the Brodie Centre which makes for a fun and vibrant experience for all.”

Ivan Semenov, a Grade 8 student at Grant Park High School, said that presenting his project (entitled What is the Effect of Different Materials on Sound Power?) at the university was a unique experience.

“I’ve never been to the University of Manitoba before,” he said, standing in the Brodie Centre. “It’s a huge building. It’s not like my school, where you have your locker, and you go to your courses, and that’s it. It’s interesting.”

The awards ceremony takes place April 13 at 9:30 a.m. in the Frederic Gaspard Theatre, Basic Medical Sciences Building, Bannatyne Campus.

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