Eskom Expo awards Limpopo young scientists

It is remarkable that a grade 12 pupil can examine which study methods for mathematics in her grade are best suited to learners in her grade – and come up with a result. The project on the best study method for grade 12 learners came from Mapula Maringa from Kingfisher Private School in Mopani region. She found that visual and repetitive learning was the way to go, and this won her an Eskom Award for Best Female Project at the Expo for Young Scientists Limpopo province finals.

The Eskom Award for Best Energy Project went to Ndibuwo Malada from Bokamoso Secondary in the Capricorn region. The research found that a new way of generating electricity was a combination of electromagnets and the sun’s rays.

“These projects demonstrate the kind of research approach that the Eskom Expo for Young Scientists endeavours to cultivate amongst school learners,” says Cecil Ramonotsi, CEO of the Eskom Development Foundation. It is part of Eskom’s broader strategy of skills development, investing in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and innovation (STEMI) subjects at school level.

Other Eskom special awards went to:

  • Best Innovation Project: Lesego Seabi from St Bedes Secondary in Capricorn region developed an automatic hand sanitiser dispenser which can efficiently reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission in public places.
  • Best Development Project: The twosome Lily Lenz and Sarina Bhyat from Thorntree Primary in Waterberg region found that 50% of people in their experiment could tell the difference between artificial and natural scents. Age and gender made no difference.

The standard of entries was particularly high this year, said provincial coordinator of the Eskom Expo, Dr Sure Mupezeni. The COVID-19 pandemic did not stop school learners from entering excellent research projects for the country’s oldest and most prestigious science fair. A wide range of subjects were covered, from environmental science to social sciences with energy at the top of the list.

There were 121 projects by 142 learners that were displayed at the provincial Limpopo Eskom Expo for Young Scientists.

The Limpopo awards event was the final of nine provincial events leading into the Eskom Expo for Young Scientists International Science Fair (ISF), which will be held on 8 October. The ISF will include participants from 35 regions in South Africa and some African countries.

Now in its 41st year, the Eskom Expo is endorsed by the Department of Public Enterprises, Department of Science and Innovation, the Department of Basic Education and has also received recognition from the Presidency. It sees learners presenting their scientific research work to judges, professionals from the private sector, academics, scientists, educators, learners from other schools, parents as well as other interested members from the general community.

Watch the awards ceremony here.

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