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The Quest for the Science Wizards of Kuwait ; My Kaleidoscopic Experience at Kuwait Science Fair 2012

Immanuel Adriana Rakshana
Tuesday, April 3, 2012
The Quest for the Science Wizards of Kuwait ; My Kaleidoscopic Experience at Kuwait Science Fair 2012

The process of Scientific Discovery is like an ever-changing kaleidoscope, each turn of this kaleidoscope brings out something new, something that changes our lives forever; it brings out a new meaning in the everyday objects that we see…Science is a kaleidoscope of new opportunities...

‘Every great advance in science has issued from a new audacity of imagination.’ This nugget of wisdom by the great John Dewey is the essence of the Kuwait Science Fair that encompasses the integration of research, experimentation, calculation, compilation and thus enhances our scientific skills and brings out the budding Nobel Prize winners in us… The Kuwait Science Fair competition, “The Best 100”, aims to encourage students to take an active interest in math and science education, in addition to arming them with knowledge and skills to explore, excite and extend innovative ideas in the scientific arena to make this world a better place.

The competition was established in 2008, as a joint partnership between ExxonMobil Exploration & Production Kuwait Limited and Kuwait Energy Company, in hopes to create further interest by Kuwait’s youth in the math and science field.

Students register with their experiment ideas to compete to become one of ‘The Best 100’, who then move on to the experimental phase of the competition, developing their projects for the finals, experiencing new things, meeting students with the same passion, hopefully inspiring them to enter a career in the math and science field.

My experience with the KSF was an extremely memorable one, one filled with the drive to excel and achieve and prove ones mettle in the field of science and technology.

The contest began back in November 2011 and continued till March 2012. Our first task was to send in our topic ideas along with our Science Fair Proposal, which is the first step for any science fair project, containing all the basic details like our investigative question and hypothesis. We were given the option to choose between working as an individual member or as part of a group of up to three students. The KSF representatives were available at their booths at various landmarks in Kuwait for any assistance that we may have required and the KSF guidebook provided each participant with all the necessary details.

After which the KSF team shortlisted the Best 100, of which I was quite lucky to be a part of, to prove my scientific ability. I thought it would be appropriate to narrate my experience to the all the Indians students in Kuwait so that they may also take part in the contest in the following years.

Qualified students competed for the top ten places.

All of us who qualified for the Best 100 got KD 100 worth, in gift vouchers for our participation which can be redeemed in various places like ‘The Magic Planet’, ‘Cinescape’, ‘The Chocolate Bar’ and ‘Crumbs’. Even our project expenses upto KD 100 is reimbursed on submission of the receipts on the final day.

After the Best 100 were selected from various categories like Physical that involves Math and other non-living aspects of nature; Biological sciences, involving living things and study of plant growth and Environmental and Earth Sciences that involves the environment and physical phenomena.

The Best 100 were contacted and assigned teachers to help us out throughout the course of the event, correcting any of our mistakes and clarifying all our doubts.

Many seminars presented by judges from the Kuwait University on research methods, provided us with scientific processes to develop our experiments and workshops were held, so that our mentors could keep a tab on our progress and solve any of the problems we may have faced.

All the students carried on with their research and experiments noting down all their observations and calculations in their Science Fair notebooks and recording their daily activities, relating to the project in the Daily log. Various topics ranging from ‘The effect of Music and caffeine on Plants’ all the way to ‘The effect of computer games on human reaction times’ were presented by the students.

My project, ‘Does your face fit the Golden Ratio’ was in the Physical category as it was related to Mathematics. My project was aimed towards finding the Math behind Beauty, the main aim of my project was to check whether in reality, people whose facial attributes conform to the Golden Ratio are more beautiful than others.

I first determined which of the selected celebrities conformed to the Golden Ratio through various calculations. I then tabulated the results and a survey was conducted in my school, asking the students to evaluate the celebrities on a scale of 1-10. The average rating was calculated on an overall basis and also on a gender basis. The results were graphed so that a comparison could be made and it was observed that the top two celebrities conformed to the Golden Ratio in both the female and male categories. But it was observed that in the Female category, three out of the top five did not conform to the Golden Ratio and in the Male category, four out of the top five conformed to the Golden Ratio. Thus, the safest conclusion that can be made is that People who conform to the Golden Ratio are more likely to be attractive than those who do not and that, Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it is not numbers or ratios that make a person beautiful…It is your own perspective. Through further research, I found that many of the top rated celebrities in my survey had used the plastic surgeries on the golden ratio to enhance their beauty and hence we can still say that the Golden Ratio is the Math behind Beauty.

During the final week before the judging, we start preparing our display and presentation. Our display is the face of our project, so it had to be attractive and eye-catching. Our exhibit should tell the story of your project including all the essential details like the Investigative Question, Hypothesis, Materials, Method, Results, and Conclusions using simple statements and attractive visuals. The display must have pictures, sketches and labelled graphs of the data obtained.

The final showdown, which is the Judging Day was an adrenaline rushing experience. Each project was given a specific timeslot for judging and 11 minutes to put forth our observations and results in accordance with our project. We were given a minute for setting up our display and five minutes for our presentation where we gave a complete summary of our project, highlighting all the important details. Then there was a four minute question-answer session where we were asked questions about our project and we then had one minute to leave the judging hall. The judging took place at the Suhoum Ballroom at ‘The Regency’ on the 22nd and 23rd of March.

The last and final session of this 5 month long scientific endeavour is the open house exhibition where people can come and witness the various budding Einsteins explaining their project to the Science Enthusiasts. The KSF Open House 2012 was held on 24th March at the Futouh Ballroom at the Regency Hotel, from 5-7pm.

Ziad Abbas(Pic from www.news.kuwaittimes.net)

The awards ceremony for the fourth annual Kuwait Science Fair (KSF) competition was held, after the Open house at the Regency Hotel under the patronage of Hani Abdulaziz Hussein, Minister of Oil and Chairman of Kuwait Petroleum Corporation. Ziad Abass won the first prize of a full scholarship in the discipline of choice from Northwestern University, an international internship at Schlumberger, a cash prize of KD750, gift vouchers worth over KD100 in value, a certificate honouring his participation and rank and a first pla

Immanuel Adriana Rakshana
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Immanuel Adriana Rakshana
Thursday, April 5, 2012
Thanks a lot Ms. Jyoti. It is reviews like yours that encourage Young Reporters like us to continue writing. Thanks once again

Jyoti
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
I applaud this young reporter for reporting such an event in depth which is informative for the ignorant people. The article is commendable. Please keep up the good work even if you have received zero comments on your article. There are a few percentage of readers who appreciate it, like me.

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