Pupils inspired to take up science

THE Science Students’ Association (Sci-SA) operating under the banner of Nelson Mandela University had a two-day science week program at Phakamani Senior Secondary School at Mtwakazi village near Whittlesea.

Mzamomhle High School, Zweledinga High School, Sovukasikhanye Senior Secondary School and Ntunja High School also participated in the program. The event was conducted by 12 Sci-SA executive members.

Lwando Goxo said the pupils were inspired by the presentations and experiments. “They participated successfully in our olympiad competition and felt privileged to be a part of our program.”

Phakamani and Mzamomhle High School grade10 and 11 pupils took the initiative to form a Sci-SA high school executive.

Goxo said, “We hosted a leadership workshop for them, after which we had an executive induction for Sci-SA High School. They showed maximum participation in all our activities.”

He encouraged learners to take up science as a subject as it was useful for solving everyday problems.

It is time for scientists to arise from black communities and come up with solutions and inventions to solve the problems their communities are facing .We recognise STEMI as a vital force that can be used for effecting change by solving immediate socio-economic challenges such as food insecurity, treatment and cure of diseases.”

Goxo said there was a pool of science graduates who were currently unemployed. He added that there was a shortage of socially conscious scientists who could think outside the box by applying their knowledge in order to create employment opportunities. “As Sci-SA we aim to produce such scientists, through the help of our partner organisation Sci4Ubuntu.”

He said they conducted experiments on water density, sand, sugar and petrol. We did a hand sanitizer and fire experiment to demonstrate the flammability of everyday products.”

A experiment using Coke and Mentos demonstrated the concept of exothermic and endothermic reactions.

Since the world is going green and organic, we introduced the pupils to growing their own crops and fancy gardens, while showing them how to preserve them. We showed them how to make their teeth brighter with activated charcoal. In the science of colour, we showed them how to combine primary colours to get secondary ones. We had white paper and indicators to test for acidity and base.”

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