1) Are We Overusing Plastic?
Plastics have invaded our lives to such an extent that it is almost impossible to think of life without them. Since plastics do not decompose as easily as other materials, their excessive use has created a problem of disposal of discarded products like plastics bags and bottles. As a result, plastics are slowly becoming a potential danger to the environment. There is thus the problem of plastic waste disposal or re-use.
A grade 10-11 science (chemistry) module on Thermoplastics and Thermoset plastics and their Recycling.
2) How Happy are You and Your Family with the Electricity Bill?
This module leads to a decision making activity, designed to consolidate learning about consuming energy, and energy saving, taking examples from everyday life and to introduce the concept of power. It involves the reading of an electricity bill and checking that the calculation of the bill is correct. It introduces students to the (kilo)watt as a unit of power and the kilowatt hour as the unit used in the home for energy consumption.
A grade 7-8 science (physics) module on determining energy consumption at home.
3) How Best to Maintain a Metal Bridge?
This set of activities allows students to consider factors which can be involved in determining the best way to protect a metal (iron) bridge. In tackling this issue, students are guided to realise that they need to be aware of the factors that cause iron to rust and also that sacrificial metals can protect iron. The sacrificial metals can be put in a series such that the metals higher in the series protect those below from corrosion (rusting). The decision making on which method to use to protect the bridge involves the consideration of a range of social factors from the need to provide employment to people, to ensuring maximum safety, to cost and also the bridge being aesthetically suitable for the surroundings.
A grade 8-9 science (chemistry) module on Rusting and Corrosion of Metals.
4) Should Vegetable Oils be used as a Fuel?
This module explores the ethical dilemma in using edible substances as fuels. In this aspect the problem did not arise because vegetable oils were too viscous to be used in standard engines. But by a process of exchanging the ester components the oils are mad in a substance resembling diesel and have less polluting properties. This module explores the making of biodiesel and its suitability as a fuel before trying to decide whether it is appropriate in this day and age of high costs of diesel to use vegetable oils as a source of fuels.
A grade 10-12 science (chemistry) material on making and testing Biodiesel as a Fuel.
Overview about modules in Estonian language
1) I love candies, but I am prohibited to eat them …..
This module is about connections between the human metabolism, feeding and health. The module presumes the knowledge about human digestive systems’ structure and physiology. The goal of this module is to teach students to search information, analyse it critically and to make decision about healthy feeding and reason this both scientifically and socially.
2) Coca-Cola: The myths and reality
This module is about the characteristic and use of Coca-Cola drinks in drinking, erasing rust from iron and making attractive experiments such as Mentose and Coca-Cola fountain. The focus is on the analysing risks of drinking Coca-Cola often covered in media and seeking the evidence from experiments and internet.
3) Oil – The King of the World or the Heel of Achilles?
This module is meant to develop the inquiry and communication skills of students in the context of using oil as energy source and its influence to the environment. The goal is to obtain new integrative knowledge about the oil and its distillation and develop the students critical analyse skills and environmental values.
4) Fitness studio vs jogging. Is the trained person strong, smart and nice?
The aim of this module is to develop the students’ inquiry and communication skills the critical evaluation of information and the competence of self-identification skills. In addition the knowledge about cardio-vascular system structure and physiology and its dependence on training are obtained.
5) Alternative sources of energy: Is the biodiesel the solution?
The aim of this module is to enlarge the students understanding about alternative fuels and the difference between the petrol engine and diesel engine working principles. The module includes the opportunity for students to synthesise the biodiesel and investigate its characteristics i.e. to develop the inquiry skills.
6) Smells – is it just about cosmetics?
The aim of this module is to introduce the role of smells around us and to develop the students’ ability to analyse critically the information divided by commercials.