Archive for March, 2013

Learning in Class, Learning at the CosmoCaixa

Written by sofias14. Posted in Personal Reflections: Team 3, WP: Investigation Team 3

Hello blog readers,

Recently in Physics class we have been studying Wave Phenomena and how standing waves work, which happens to be one of the topics that I am in charge of covering. What’s unfortunate is that the actual idea of how these waves work and their relationship to music and noise is explained very vaguely for that exhibition, so I began to completely ignore what it said on the wall and started explaining how I remembered it in the classroom. It turns out that this weekend has been one of the most successful yet because of it, and it’s one of those topics that can be easily explained to younger kids, but can be embellished for adults and older people.

I actually happened to run into two musicians while I was working my shift last weekend, and they both had so many questions about how these standing waves worked in music. They were fascinated by the real life application of the topic, and people were even dragging other visitors that they had come along with to listen to the explanation again. I felt as if I were part of the display itself after a while!

Until the next time,

Sofia Scattarreggia

9th week of Explaining

Written by gabriela14. Posted in Personal Reflections: Team 1

Hello,

“Porque eres tan listo” (why are you so smart.) A little Kid was praising me this weekend, asking me why I was so smart. I felt very happy about this. It made me understand what all this work was for. Every once and a while a get people who are not interested at all, but when I explain something to a kid and you can see his interest in the subject just brightens up my day. This weekend was the photo shoot. It was pretty overwhelming. Trying to move around everywhere to get the perfect picture was pretty hard. The museum was pretty empty so it was hard to grab a group of people. At the end of the session we finally got very good pictures so hopefully the photographer was satisfied. 

On Sunday I decided to explain the evolution unit. Finally I get to explain biology! As you may know biology is my favorite science, so its and amazing experience to work so closely with the animals. I specially bonded with the blue tongue lizard. I hope to enjoy this unit.

Thanks,

Gabriel Antoni 

Triple Threat

Written by Cameron Harnish. Posted in Personal Reflections: Team 3

Hello everyone, I am going to do this blog post as a triple weekend post. These past weeks I couldn’t find the time (or the motivation) to update my Cosmo Caixa blog. Excuses aside, now it’s time for business. Sidenote: This is a long post, but trust me, it’s worth it at the end.

The weekend of the 23rd (of February) was my first weekend tackling the physics section of the great Cosmo Caixa. Some background on the section: Physics 1 consists of Basic waves. These include Longitudinal and Transverse waves. An example of a Longitudinal wave would be sound waves. The energy propagates in the same direction of the movement of the particles, which in this case, is longitudinally. In a transverse wave, the direction of the propagation of energy is perpendicular to the movement of the particles. Radio waves are a good example of transverse waves. I also got to handle the handheld Newton’s cradle. Those magnificent balls made things a whole lot easier. They were a great conversation starter. In all seriousness though, having a physical object at the exhibit that coincided with the theme of the exhibit really helped engage the people passing by. I specifically remember one boy who stood staring at Newton’s cradle with moving for at least twenty minutes. It wouldn’t have been so bad if it wasn’t time for me to leave the exhibit.

The weekend of the 2nd of March I decided to expand my base a little. By that I mean I ventured out on a mission to explain to people how centrifugal force works. The extra explaining came as a bit of a relief, because simple waves were starting to bore me. I had considerable help from my partner in crime, Sofia Scattarreggia (read her blog posts by the way if you guys have a chance). That journey to the other side of the physics realm (that was an inside joke) made me have to think a little more on my feet, as well as put my Spanish speaking skills to the test. By the end of my weekend I was a mean, green, physics machine.

Last weekend (March 9-10) was the emptiest that I had ever seen in all my time at the Cosmo Caixa. I literally had less than 10 explanations that day. It picked up a bit by the afternoon, but I was still only in the double digits for the amount of explanations I gave that weekend. I did have one golden moment though. This lady being pushed in a wheelchair came up to the demonstration of transverse waves, and I started to explain to her and the man pushing her wheelchair about what/how transverse waves work. I soon realized that the lady in the wheelchair suffered from a mental illness. I realized when I heard her severe speech impairment. I then decided to show her Newton’s Cradle. I got down on one knee, held up the cradle, lifted up one of the balls on the end, and let it go. The expression of joy that lit up her face was truly moving. The lady was in complete awe. She thought it was one of the coolest things in the world. From that experience I derived, and I hope you take heed of, this lesson: It’s the simple things in life that can make you smile. Something as simple as Newton’s cradle. So thank you Newton for bringing joy to a lady who deserves her fair share of happiness as well.

Hasta la Proxima (until next time),

Cameron (11th grade)

Four hours shift

Written by Lucas Caetano. Posted in Personal Reflections: Team 1

Hello everyone,

As an Explainer I would like to briefly explain how my last weekend in CosmoCaixa went. I now feel comfortable explaining my exhibit on evolution. This makes being an Explainer much more interesting because I can now have conversations with museum visitors. Furthermore, this week I had to substitute for a college explainer and therefore I went back to the inert matter which also made me happy because I was still able to explain all the exhibits which means I truly learned what they mean and not purely memorized what I had to memorize in order to be an explainer. Doing a 4 hour shift was very interesting and surprisingly it passed very quickly, before my shift i thought my legs were going to hurt and I would be tired of talking all the time, fortunately the opposite happened. As time passed I was more and more intrigued by my exhibits and thus interacted more with the public. Living matter has always had my curiosity, but now it has my attention, I am looking forward to learn more about the living matter which is exposed in CosmoCaixa. Lastly, as always I thank BFIS and CosmoCaixa for a unique experience.

Fair winds,

Lucas Caetano.

American University of Paris visiting

Written by admin. Posted in College Counselor

The American University of Paris is a selective liberal arts college based nice and close in Europe.

They’ll be visiting BFIS next Thursday 21st March, at 13.30 in room 6101. It promises to be a really useful presentation for anyone interested in studying in a liberal arts environment, you can check out their options of majors and minors beforehand to see what’s available.

Here is a little insight into what it’s like to start at AUP