The Oil Spill Challenge

As part of Cedars Science Week Spectacular, several classes had the opportunity to conduct an experiment as they participated in the ‘Oil Spill Challenge.’

“What would happen if a full oil tanker crashed into the break wall at Port Kembla?”  “Who and what would it affect (long term or short term)?”  “What would be our response?”

These are the questions our Year 7 students were asked to answer and then take on the challenge of designing and producing the best oil absorbent bollard in the class.  Each group of students was given various materials to help construct their bollard including tea bags, measuring cylinders, cotton balls, straw, etc.

The students embraced the challenge whole heartedly with the two winning teams taking on the ultimate head to head challenge at the end using giant cylinders and stockings as their materials.

We talked to some of the students and here is what they had to say about the lesson and challenge:

“This experiment was a fun way to learn about how things work and how long it takes to fix oil spills.  It will help us remember how important it is to take care of the environment we live in.” – Tahlia

“It was really educational and interesting to learn about the oil spill in Mauritius.”  – Maeve

“It was really fun to find out ways to fix oil spills on the ocean.  It made us realise how much hard work it is to fix oil spills.” – Chase

“It was really fun.  We got to do different activities – we tried hard but didn’t win.” – Jasper

“It was interesting, educational and a fun way to learn about something serious.” – Kiara