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Why it's amazing virtual science all round from students and staff at Northbridge Cambodia

Diego Mahecha
Diego Mahecha (10 posts) Secondary Science Curriculum Leader, Science MYP and Physics DP Teacher View Profile

The challenges of the virtual school experience are inescapable. Students and teachers at Northbridge International School Cambodia have been walking a steep learning slope for the last 2 months with successes and failures but always with the most positive attitude to make this a meaningful experience where everyone learns and benefits. Let’s take a look at some amazing work and projects that our students are working on or already completed and finish with the reflections from teachers about this experience.


Northbridge International School Cambodia - Science

The Group 4 Project goes virtual

Grade 11 students were given the challenge, for the first time ever, of collaborating virtually and coordinate the data collection to investigate a scientific phenomenon of their choice from the safety of their homes.

The project will see its end next June 15 when each interdisciplinary group will present their findings and share their answers to questions like do we remember things better when we learn them in the morning or the afternoon?, Can we stop the browning of apples using a sugar solution? or How can we model the effect of temperature on the time Matcha, Milo or COffee take to dissolve in water?.

Over the next 3 weeks, the groups will be meeting with their teacher advisors to discuss the details of their experiments and make sure the data is collected rigorously to produce reliable results. An exciting and challenging task for our future seniors! Thanks to Mr J, Ms Frances, Ms Silvia and Mr Diego for taking the lead on this.

Wanna learn about cloning with a cool video?

Grade 11 Biology students with Ms Silvia had to go creative when communicating their understanding about cloning. Did you know that different organisms have different cloning abilities or that cloning can happen both naturally or artificially? Well, Tysing, Jihyun and Oudom decided to bring this to us with this very interesting and well produced video.

Some students acted out interviews as world-leading scientists, used different animation techniques or pretended to be world-known youtubers talking about the science of cloning. It doesn’t matter how complex the topic is, NISC students always find a way to get their creativity going and never cease to amaze their teachers.

Click here or above to watch the full video

Northbridge International School Cambodia - Science

Students producing excellent teaching material?

Yes, this happens at NISC. Our grade 6 students Kanika,Somanich, Kelsie and Mayumi made Mr Andy’s jaw drop when he saw the very good quality set of slides they produced covering a lot of the concepts about nothing less than cells, tissues, organs and systems.

This group of students really went beyond the simple presentation with some definitions and photos and produced a compilation of materials and websites that any teacher would love to use to teach their classes. Feel free to explore this presentation and the multiple websites it references if you’re curious about everything that happens inside your body.

Want to learn about the nervous system? Try out this rap!

Grade 9 students with Ms Silvia had to explore creative ways of communicating their understanding about the nervous system from different videos they found online. Sometimes watching videos can be boring and people learn better if they listen to a good song.

This is why Mongkul and Elijah composed the rap "Empty state of mind" based on the TED Ed video "How the food you eat affects your brain" to teach rap lovers about this interesting topic. Go ahead and listen to our young rappers.

Where are our teachers in all of this?

Working backstage, there is a unique group of teachers facilitating all these learning experiences. When asked about the successes and challenges, here are some of the reflections they shared…

What I have learned from this experience, less is more. [...] I am also enjoying exploring the virtual labs. What does still challenge me is not always seeing faces, you gauge so much from facial expressions and body language. More so than I realised! Ms Frances, Biology G11
Something I've learned: How quickly students are able to adapt to new situations and quickly they got used to new online platforms like Padlet, Destiny Discover and Scratch. Something that challenges me: The most difficult aspect for me as a teacher during remote learning is probably the same challenge faced by students - motivation! It is difficult to stay on task and productive with all the distractions at home! Mr Jack, Science G6
This whole virtual school experience has made me aware of the huge community of teachers around the world and how collaboration is what makes us stronger. I’ve also learned that I am definitely not made for a job where I have to sit by myself for so long! I miss being around students, seeing their faces even if it is rolling eyes. I miss the interaction a lot Mr Diego, Science G10 & Physics DP

We are all in this together and our Science team is constantly looking for ways to improve and keep high standards while providing as much support and guidance as we can. Face to face and also virtually, we keep the ambitious spirit up!