Students at Joseph Howe Elementary in Halifax participated in a nation-wide science experiment last week with the hope they might just get into the Guinness Book of World Records.
It started at exactly 2 p.m. last Friday, out of necessity to line up with the other 12,000 students from over 135 schools across Canada. In order for the coordinated event to be official, it needed to be filmed by school staff because it was an attempt at a new Guinness World Record for the Largest Practical Science Lesson at multiple locations.
Science.gc.ca organized the event nationwide as part of their kick off for Science and Technology Week and included students from Early Learning Opportunities to Grade 6 (three years old to age 12).
One of the young scientists was Tyanah Beals, who said she had fun while participating in the national experiments.
"I really liked it, it was really neat," Beals said. "I had a lot of fun with the water one, because my friends and I were just squirting it at each other and just having a good time."
Beals said she got at least 10 of her classmates with her water mister.
The experiment involved a glass of water with two straws; the goal was to blow over the top of one straw tapped on the inside of the glass with the other straw. If done properly, it will cause mist to spray from the straw inside of the glass, demonstrating the Bernoulli principle. Needless to say, some areas got soaked, all in the name of science.
"It represents how fun science can be," Beals said shortly after the experiments were finished. "I want to learn more about space because my friends were saying there are aliens, and I want to find out if there actually are aliens up there."
The other experiment was called ‘kissing balloons' where students would blow between two balloons causing them to collide together.
Jeff Carruthers, vice principal at Joseph Howe, said he wanted to get the school involved both because of the potential for setting a world record and because it involved hands-on science.
"That's something that I always try to incorporate in this school," Carruthers said. "When I was a teacher here, I incorporated that into my lessons because kids love to learn that way."
Although the day went as planned, Carruthers said he doesn't know when Guinness will confirm whether or not they made it into the record books.
The event necessitated a lot of help, and Carruthers called in the science cavalry - Let's Talk Science. A group of science majors from Dalhousie who helped facilitate the day's activities.
"They said they needed some help and we jumped on it," said Katie Kowarski, the Lets Talk Science event coordinator. "It's something completely different than anything we've done before. There are more rules and regulations, but the excitement is just so much more palpable."
Let's Talk Science is made up of volunteers who go into schools from Grades Primary to 12 to help teach biology, chemistry, and other fields of science.