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Students from Canggu Community School, Bali, Indonesia, have won the Cambridge Upper Secondary Science Competition for the Southeast Asia and Pacific region.
The school was represented by six Year 10 students: Lucy Hoyles, Luna Van Der Rijst, Maya Tjiantoro, Kayla Katarina Godwin, Malaika Wauters, and Zara Dennis and supervised by Ben Graham, the school’s chemistry teacher, and Tristan Harvey, the physics teacher.
Their winning project, titled 'How do different concentrations of acidic liquids affect microorganism growth,’ was an investigation into healthier alternatives for food preservatives and cleaning products, as a potential solution to health issues and environmental contamination in Indonesia and globally. The team tested table salt (sodium chloride), lime juice, and vinegar as natural and affordable alternatives.
Zara Dennis, one of the team members from Canggu Community School, said: 'The purpose of our group project was to not only investigate how different concentrations of acidic liquids affected the growth of microorganisms, but also to encourage others to deepen their understanding of the importance of hygiene and even more significantly their health in terms of unnatural preservatives and chemical cleaning products.
'My favourite part of this project was how well my group and I worked together as a team. This remarkable experience has taught all of us critical skills which will benefit us in the future,' she added.
'Additionally, knowing that our project could potentially benefit many others as it investigated a solution to a world problem really inspires and excites me to do more for the community.'
Canggu Community School’s winning entry was one of 51 from schools across the region, and the school received a letter of recognition celebrating the success, and every team member received a medal.
The aim of the competition was to give learners the chance to develop their passion for science and to promote attributes of a Cambridge learner through collaboration, communication, innovation and creativity.
The overall international winner of the competition was a team from Jayshree Periwal International School, India, in the South Asia region, who put together a project entitled 'Live or Dye? Negative impacts of synthetic dyes'. The project was an investigation into the effect of synthetic food colour dyes on the respiration and growth of yeast, a subject directly relevant to the everyday lives of the students.
The expert judging panel included Dr Helen Eccles, ex-Director of Cambridge International and Science Competition Lead, Dr Rachel Garsed, Senior Engineer at CMR Surgical, Dr Elaine Wilson, Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Education at Cambridge University and Dr Judith Roberts, Head of Cambridge Primary and Lower Secondary, Development, Cambridge International.