Annual Middle School Science Knight Explores Compelling Research Topics

By Hannah Garcia May 16, 2024

Every year, eighth-graders embark on a long research project that culminates in a night of presentations to the community. This year many were inspired by what Ilsa Schrag ’28 described as “topics that have a big influence on our lives.” From the smallpox vaccine and the science behind hair to self-driving cars and space colonization, students delved into projects that affect their everyday lives and could affect their lives in the future. 

These impressive poster boards and demonstrations didn’t come to fruition overnight. Throughout April and the end of March, students hunkered down in the Library Learning Center (LLC) during their E block to collaborate with their peers and build their final product. Students pushed themselves to do their best work, knowing they’d get to share their findings with their parents and the wider BB&N community. 

One compelling project spearheaded by Aiden Ashaye ’28 and Kevin Pineda ’28 investigated what color blindness is and how it affects humans. When asked why they chose this specific topic, both Aiden and Kevin cited wearing glasses as the main inspiration, as they have “difficulty perceiving what other people naturally can.” At their booth, they encouraged visitors to take their color blindness test and showed off the glasses they invented that can show a person how a red/green and blue/yellow color-blind person sees the world. 

Another presentation by Liya Tilahun ’28 and Julian Foster ’28 focused on hair growth in straight versus curly hair. Sparked by their culture and identity, Julian noted that he was “curious about why there are different hair types.” Liya noted that it was surprising that different types of hair follicles influence the growth of the strands of hair, thus creating the wide range of styles found in humans. 

Launching a research project can be daunting but with the proper guidance and hard work, the eighth-graders completed another massive step on their BB&N journey.