(SAVANNAH, Ga.) – Students in the Blessed Sacrament School Science Club were the first group in the Southeast United States to contribute to The Global Water Experiment, an international project.
The United Nations has declared 2011 the International Year of Chemistry. School students around the world were encouraged to explore one of Earth's most critical resources, water. The results of their investigations will contribute to the Global Water Experiment, which will possibly become the biggest chemistry experiment ever.
In The Global Water Experiment, students are to investigate the quality of the water in their local surrounding and share this with the world. The international year of chemistry is an initiative of the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry and of UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
The Blessed Sacrament Science Club participated in the international water quality experiment and shared their results with others throughout the world at the end of the school year. BSS middle school students got water samples from several local watersheds and water types, including Tybee Island, Skidaway River, Forest and the Savannah River.
The BSS students were the first group in the southeast United States to contribute to the global experiment and one of only about 20 groups in the U.S. to participate in the exercise to date, said BSS Science Club facilitator Will Lynch, Ph.D. The students learned the importance of water quality and acid-base chemistry in their lives and environment.
They tested the water during their Science Club meeting, where they learned about pH and the pH scale through a variety of techniques including indicators, pH paper and also via electrochemical analysis. After discovering pH and discussing its relationship to aqueous environments and life, the students determined their sample pH by these techniques and pooled their data. After testing samples, their data was uploaded to the website below to be part of the collective data from other students from around the world.
“One reason the students were excited to perform this experiment was so they could feel a sense of contribution to a greater effort with peer students from around the world,” Lynch said. “There are groups of students from six different continents working on the same project, including students from Georgia (the country), England, South Africa, Argentina and Australia, all monitoring the most important natural resource on Earth — water. This gave the students a real sense of pride that they have contributed to the universal water quality initiative.”
Blessed Sacrament School was founded in 1939 with two classrooms and three sisters of Mercy as the first faculty. Today there are two sections of each grade level from Pre-K through 8th grades with a current enrollment of approximately 425 students. The school offers a rigorous, faith-based academic program and maintains small class sizes. Blessed Sacrament is part of the Catholic Diocese of Savannah and has received accreditation by both SACS (Southern Association of Colleges and Schools) and FCC (Florida Catholic Conference).
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About the International Year of Chemistry 2011 and The Global Water Experiment http://water.chemistry2011.org/web/iyc