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If at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again - week two of the Daily Discovery Series

July 29, 2021


OH NO!! The fire alarm is going off, what do you do??

Week two participants of the Daily Discovery Series know precisely what to do and where to go. Week one lead Genevieve led the fire safety Fire evacuation mapactivity, which showed how to draw out a floor plan of the student’s home. This activity identified exit points, sources of water, fire extinguishers and potential fire hazards.

Like the Daily Discovery Series itself, the second week was heating up fast as coordinators got the first week butterflies out of the way, but that doesn’t mean they’re perfect. 

McMaster University life sciences graduate and current Michener Institute medical laboratory science student Josephine Huynh is a lab lover. The aspiring medical laboratory technologist has year’s worth of experiments behind her, but this week’s rock activity was most definitely her most challenging - and exciting - to date! The activity was to create large crystals from salt, and it took Josephine several tries in advance to get the experiment just right. The trick? Put the salt in the freezer!

Josephine wasn’t the only coordinator who had to try, try again. The fire activity had coordinators stumped. The activity was to create a reaction to put out a burning candle. Still, two coordinators initially used antacid and water reactions. An antacid may solve heartburn, but it won’t put out a burning candle. With perseverance, trial and error and science research, they figured out that vinegar and baking soda perform much better. Despite their struggles, one coordinator summed it up perfectly, “that's what science is, trial and error. You can’t get it right every time!”

The second of six weeks in The Daily Discovery Series (July 12-16) was all about the four elements. Activities included forming crystals from a salt reaction, a fire reaction to put out a burning candle. The water activity was focused on using materials inside and outside the house to see how well they filter dirt from water. Things got windy for the air activity as coordinators, and Daily Discovery Series participants were tasked with making their own windmill. 

Related article: Embracing their inner Bill Nye - A look at week one The video setup of a Daily Discovery Series programming assistant. A ring light sits to the right of a laptop on a table.

In week one, we heard about the difficulties our coordinators experienced with their camera setups. This week they were determined to improve, and they did not disappoint! In week two, coordinators brought in new ring lights, new microphones and even a new camera. Filming setups weren’t the only improvements. The six STEM leaders from across Canada have gotten more comfortable with public speaking and talking to the camera. In the first week, Josephine took several hours to film and edit the videos, and it now takes just a couple. She has also become more aware of the camera angles and filler words. 

The coordinators love seeing participants uploading their creations to the Flipgrid. It brings them joy seeing that participants are recreating the activities they work so hard on producing.

A headshot of Josephine Huynh“My passion for STEM is due to an amazing grade seven science teacher who inspired me to pursue the sciences.” For 22-year-old Josephine, who has since developed a passion for healthcare, STEM is a tool she uses to give back and have a rewarding career. Waking up each day and being able to have a lasting impact on the lives of others is what motivates her. 

Josephine believes that a love for STEM leads to a long-lasting and fulfilling career. “The field of STEM is so broad. If you open up to the possibilities, you will find something you love.” Learn more about available careers in STEM on our website.


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