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Science Olympians from Assumption College High School wrestle with a question during a fast-paced quiz game in the Toldo Health Education Centre.Science Olympians from Assumption College High School wrestle with a question during a fast-paced quiz game in the Toldo Health Education Centre.

Competition shows students the fun side of science

“Science can be fun,” says Adib Shamsuddin.

A grade 12 student at Vincent Massey Secondary School, he was part of the biggest turnout yet for Science Olympiad, which brought high schoolers to campus Friday to compete in a number of disciplines, from a science trivia contest to setting a pendulum to mark a specific period of time.

A total of 32 teams of six students each tested their skills and knowledge in events designed and run by teacher candidates, said education professor Geri Salinitri. She credits the consistently high standards of the activities and the dedication of organizers John Salalila and Paul Preney.

“Word is definitely getting out that this is an activity you don’t want to miss,” she said. “Before we send out the invitations, I have teachers calling me to find out when it’s happening.”

Adam Mills, who teaches math and physics at Assumption College High School, said he likes the opportunity for his students to get out of the classroom.

“Science Olympiad is a very positive experience for the participants,” he said. “They learn more of the hands-on activities and team-building.”

That team-building isn’t limited to the high schoolers, said education student Stephanie Palazzolo, who spent the academic year coordinating her classmates in organizing the contests. She said the event developed their abilities, especially communications.

“After all the work, it went really well today,” she said. “My team came through. They were awesome.”

Massey ended up with the major bragging rights, with teams from the school finishing first and third overall.

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