Sunday 5 May 2019
We don't have huge IB cohorts at Whitgift, but quite a few of the students choose physics for their extended essay subject. This year I supervised a student who investigated how the concentration of cornflour in water affected the speed of a falling object in a bid to find a means of walking on water that doesn't involve running at 600 mph (unlike The Flash). Last year another student wanted an excuse to ask a nearby university for a day in their wind tunnel (he's a keen cyclist) but did most of the work in the lab using a model to investigate body angle and drag.
Both did a great job in the end. But one had a better experience by kicking off in the summer term of Year 1. He was able to collect almost all of his data before the summer, which enabled him to use those quieter months for writing. When he returned to school for Year 2, he could concentrate on the remaining IAs and university applications as he had a full first draft ready for feedback.
So there's no time like the present for you to get to know the process.
We don't claim to replace the Extended Essay guide (located in the My IB Programme Resorce Centre) but we do have pages ready for students to learn about writing and for you on supervising. Friend Geoff Neuss, former principal examiner of Chemistry Extended Essay shares his tips on the assessment (worth knowing, even though it's externally marked) and Chris presents his efforts to get a grade A!
- something to do with electronics
- something to do with physics
The fifth will actually be submitted as a design technology EE. Jonatan is keen to design an aid to help solve one of the many problems faced by people with Parkinson's (me). He originally approached me wanting to do this in physics but then he would have to focus on a physical aspect of the design which would detract from the design process. Throwing caution to the wind I decided to take it on as a design technology EE, something I admittedly know little about. I'll be looking for help. Any design technology teachers out there?