This event was well-organized and ran smoothly. The kids had a blast.
Here is my feed back to ESO team on Energy Box.
How can teams have different initial temps.. varying from 186 to 170. more than 15 deg difference..
the teams who get higher temp lose bigtime. The rate the heat is lost directly proportional to temp difference.
All the boxes are at same room temps ... but they are pouring different temps of water , and different amounts. one team gets 20ml less water than others
There is no standarization on amount of water and initial temp they are going to give for each team.
I hope ESO looks into this seriously and will not make this blunder.
After so much of hard work it is their luck to low temp and high volume of water.
Consider the slab of material shown in Figure 17.3. The left end of the beam is maintained at a temperature TH; the right end of the beam is maintained at a temperature TC. As a result of the temperature difference heat will flow through the slab, from its hot end to its cold end. Experimentally it is shown that the rate of heat transfer (Q/t) is proportional to the cross-sectional area of the slab, proportional to the temperature difference, and inversely proportional to the length of the slab
While judging the Energy Box event, the judges maintained the same amount of water sample to all teams (till the top line in the beaker). Some designs required the beakers to be deep inside and not easily visible, thus giving the illusion of different amounts of water. Teams must look into designing the boxes such that there are no obstructions to pouring the water into the beaker directly.
The hot water from the kettle was also at about the same temp. However, the measured initial temp. variation (we see a 12 degree F in initial temp. variation) was mainly due to the team members waiting to confirm the temp. as they read the thermometer. Some kids were not sure about how long to wait before closing the box. This resulted in the temperature drop of the starting temp. for those teams. This should be part of their preparation steps for the event.
If we dwell into the physics of heat transfer, the heat flow rate is given by
dQ/dt = kA dT/dx
where LHS is the heat flow rate, and the dT/dx is the temp. gradient over a linear dimension. k and A are constants for the given insulating material (k = thermal conductivity) and the box (A=Area). dT is the temp. difference between the two systems through which the heat flows (in this case, hotwater temp. and room temp.).
The effects of k and A are much larger (can be as high as 3 orders of magnitude) than the effect of a 15-degree F (translates to 8 degree C or K in the 180 F to 165 F range) temperature change for one of the systems in question.
The judges have conducted this experiment thoroughly prior to the competition, and have their results for varying starting temperatures. Based this practical test and the theory given above, the conclusion is that the variation in initial temp. noted (mainly due to team's delay in reading the thermometer as opposed to hot water from a constantly-plugged in kettle) does not affect the heat flow rate as much as the other factors (k and A).
The spirit of the event is to understand the mechanics of heat flow and the thermal conductivity of various materials. We'll look further into judging the event based on the broader principles of physics, yet still keeping it within the scope of the elementary grade level.
My feedback on battery buggy event.
Kids were not asked any questions by the judges. It is very important to weigh in kids understanding of the design and why xyz design choice was made in overall scoring. Hope ESO looks into this for future buggy events.
Log books helped in that respect :-)
Some positive comments we received by email:
"We just returned from the ESO event at American high. I wanted to personally THANK YOU for a great event. It was a well organized event that takes lot of effort."
"We wanted to thank you for organizing the Science Olympiad again this year. The kids learnt while having fun."
"I want to thank the ESO organizers for providing the elementary school kids the opportunity to experience and participate in the Olympiads today.
An Extra Big Thank you also to the judges and judges' assistants who helped the children participate without being anxious or feeling intimidated. They were very calm and composed and that helped all the events go smoothly.
Our girls are already looking forward to coming next year !"
"Yes, I would like to thank the ESO team of organizers, judges, officials and all volunteers for a wonderful event. Not only did the event go smoothly but for all the care that was taken for the kids to enjoy and considering the hot weather during Pentathalon.
Thanks and Kudos to the team ESO!"
"Thanks for conducting the Elementary Science Olympiad. It was a great experience as a head coach & kids enjoyed participating in all events & pentathlon."
"Thanks for everything. Really enjoyed the event. Amazing on your part to do this for the kids.
Thanks a lot again."
"Thanks again for all the great work and encouragement to the kids through the ESO ."
Thank you all for your kind words. We are happy to note that the kids learned science in a fun way. Hope to see the kids again next year!
Enjoy the summer and keep learning :-)
Vidya, Arun, Raji
Bay Area ESO Team
a. Certificates to kids in first 3 spots in every event
b. Publish the names of the kids in the winning events
c. Invite sponsorship (from Tech Companies & Hobby stores, etc..) -
d. Invite media to capture and publish the event [ Sponsorship may help with this]
e. Topics for food for thought are not clear. What are the topics which should be covered besides food groups and food additives? Some sample papers would be helpful.
f. Publish winning team’s examples [models/designs] for experimental design, disease detectives and anatomy as these are not a typical part of elementary syllabus and it is hard to work on these. - Publish winning teams’ pictures with their models/designs. This will give an idea to kids for next year.
g. All theory papers- sample should be given regarding the way the question are asked.
We really appreciate your comments so we can improve the event next year.