Mo is Off to the ‘Big Leagues’ Canada-Wide Science Fair
Let’s cheer Mohammed (Mo) Al-Seragi on as he is going to the Canada Wide Science Fair in Ottawa, May 16-18, 2018 as part of Team BC. He will face off against the best of the best in Canada after winning Gold and the selection at the Greater Vancouver Regional Science Fair.
After winning honorable mention last year, Mo was motivated to do better this year. He saw the level of research that was needed and intended to meet (and beat) those expectations. His lead removal project is both innovative and can potentially be used commercially. It contributes to dealing with the problem of lead in our water systems.
Mo is the fifth Gold-winning project from Palmer to be selected to the national competition in 12 years. All have returned with the top prize(s) in their categories. We think Mo can do the same if we cheer him on!
Palmer Strikes GOLD (and more) at the Greater Vancouver Regional Science Fair
Palmer Incentive students continued their winning scientific ways by winning Gold, Bronze and an Honorable Mention, among other awards and prizes. Vivian Tan in grade eight/junior division was an Honorable Mention winner for her “UN Permanent Marker” project while grade nines, Nicolas To and Zechariah Noronha used their “Sticky Situations” to attach themselves to a Bronze medal win in the Intermediate Division!
The big win of the three day long fair saw grade nine, Mohammed Al-Seragi’s “Don’t Meddle With Metal”, lead-removal and analysis project win Gold and selection and an all-expense-paid trip to the Canada-Wide Science Fair. (Note: not all Gold winning projects get selected). In addition, he won two Physics/Engineering awards, and scholarship/prize money.
Vivian has already started thinking about how she will win it all next year!
Potluck Slideshow 2017
UNIVERSITY OF WATERLOO 2017 MATH CONTESTS (Pascal/Cayley/Fermat)
On Tuesday, February 28th, 2017, over 100 Palmer students (joined by a few Grade 7 students who have been attending our Junior Math Club meetings) wrote the annual University of Waterloo Math contests for Grades 8-11 (the Pascal Contest for Grades 8 and 9; Cayley Contest for Grade 10; and Fermat Contest for Grade 11). Students were packed into Palmer’s main lounge for the 8:30AM start of the one-hour contest, and they busily spent the next hour calculating and problem-solving their way to the solutions. Contest papers were then sent away to the University of Waterloo for marking and statistical analysis, and results should be known by mid-April. Certificate awards will be presented in each contest to students who place in the top 25% of all students who wrote the contests in Canada. In addition, the top student at Palmer on each contest will be presented with a school champion medal. Top schools in each zone, province, or in the country may earn championship plaques.
Junior Math Teams Compete at Math Challengers Tournament at UBC
Palmer’s two junior Math teams competed at the annual Lower Mainland Regional Math Challengers tournament at UBC on Saturday, February 18th, 2017. After several hours and rounds of problem solving, it proved to be a very successful day as both Palmer teams and a number of our individual students picked up several trophies and medals. The Grade 9’s earned a third place finish in their pool, and the Grade 8’s finished in first in theirs.
In addition, team members Jonah Chen and Jonathan Cao placed sixth and second respectively in the Grade 9 individual standings, while Grade 8 team member Nicholas To individually placed tenth overall. Amazingly, two Grade 7 General Currie Elementary students who are members of our Grade 8 team and Junior Math Club (Edward Zeng and Kevin Yan) individually placed second and first overall in the Grade 8 pool. All of our Grade 8 and 9 individual standouts competed in the exciting Face-Off round at the end of the competition, where contestants competed one-on-one in a buzz-in quiz-show-styled round similar to that of the TV show Jeopardy! Congratulations to all the team members and student coaches, and good luck at the provincial finals at SFU on April 8th!
Grade 8 Team members: Cyrus Pang, Nicholas To, Ricky Tsai, Kevin Yan, Edward Zeng
Grade 9 Team members: Jonathan Cao, Jonah Chen, Eric Fan, Kyle Qi, Cindy Zhong
Student Coaches: Jason Bai, Christy Chan, Tina Fang, Morris Huang, Liang Liu, Joseph Strong, Frank Wang, Andrew Xie
Palmer’s 11th Annual Science Fair – The Wonder Kids
The longest running Science Fair in Richmond, Palmer’s Science Fair highlighted an amazing number of experiments and inventions.
Mohammed Al-Seragi emerged as the top grade 8 with his project to capture toxic lead in water. Do you like tying your laces? If not, then use Nathan Ticman and Nicolas To’ invention to tie them for you! They placed second in grade 8, just ahead of Sabrina Teng and Joan Liu’s experiments with detergents.
In the grade 9 category, Abdurrahmaan Abdulaziz and Julien Mo created and tested coffee ground furniture to capture first place and special drone prizes. In environmental engineering, Michael Lee and Dickson Huang used electromagnetic waves to repair and build coral for their second place project. Finally Christin Ye and Anna Sorokina’s explored how temperature gradients can generate electricity.
The top three grade nine teams and Mohammed are competing in the Greater Vancouver Regional Science Fair at UBC, April 6-8, where last year Palmer was the Top School in the number of awards won.
CAMP SQUAMISH 2016
The Incentive Grade 8, 9 and 10 classes recently returned from our annual Fall retreat, held from Wednesday, October 12th to Friday, October 14th at the Easter Seal camp on the shores of the Squamish River in Brackendale, BC. Throughout the three days, our teaching staff and student campers were treated to a mix of glorious sunshine as well as stormy autumn weather!
During camp, the students were put into nine multigrade teams of nine or ten students each, together with a Grade 11 or 12 Incentive student who acted as a team mentor. The teams then went through a series of activities designed to promote team-building and the formation of connections between students in different grades in the Pre-AP/Incentive Program. Aided by the mentors, Palmer Pre-AP/Incentive teachers ran carefully planned activities that centred around this year’s theme of “Carpe Diem (Seize the Day)”. Activities included teacher-led team-building games, a simulation game based on The Hero’s Journey, a critical-thinking treasure hunt, a First Nations drum-making workshop led by Squamish resident Tsawaysia Spukwus, a mentor-led team-building session, a chant-writing and performing session, a creative-thinking Destination Imagination Instant Challenge, and of course the traditional campfire sing-alongs. Some of the activities allowed teams to earn points, which were tallied at the end of the two-and-a-half days to determine the top team at camp. In addition, teams were assigned into three Houses (Cheakamus, Chilcotin and Cowichan), each consisting of three teams, and the House with the highest aggregate team points at the end was awarded the Camp Squamish Grafton Cup as the Top House.
At the end of a close and intense but friendly competition, it was Team 8 (led by Grade 11 mentor Eric Kuo) who won the Top Team medals, while Cowichan (comprised of Teams 7, 8 and 9) won the trophy for Top House.
Kudos and thanks to the following mentors for their excellent work at camp: Joanne Chi, Rachel Ku, Amanda Kuo, Eric Kuo, Ryan Lam, Andrew Lee, Cecilia Lee, Oscar Liu, Vandy Liu, Antonio Pablo, and Joey Wong! Kudos as well to the teachers who were involved in the organization and planning for camp, and who accompanied the Pre-AP/Incentive students for the three days: Mrs. Calaciura, Ms. Epp, Ms. Naidu, Mr. Sidhu and Mr. Wong. Everyone is already eagerly looking forward to next year’s Camp Squamish!
RC Palmer is the TOP School in the 2016 Greater Vancouver Regional Science Fair (GVRSF) at UBC
As unbelievable as it sounds, one of the smallest public schools in Richmond and the GVRSF took home the top number of prizes and medals on Saturday, April 9th, 2016. Out of 54 schools and over 250 projects in the GVRSF, students from Palmer’s Pre-AP/Incentive Program won six division awards and 10 special awards for their seven projects entered.
Ray L. won his third Gold at the GVRSF for the creation of his Solvent-Polymer Deposition 3D Printer. He is one of the 16 top projects selected for the upcoming Canada Wide Fair. His other awards this year are the: David Laughame Award, BCIC Young Innovator Scholarship, UBC Department of Physics and Chemistry Scholarship, UBC Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering Award, and the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of BC Award.
In the Intermediate division, Grade 10 students Annabelle W. and Isabelle C. won Silver for their work with thermochromic pigments. They are looking to patent their technology that could have wide application in temperature regulation for houses and passively reduce energy used for heating and cooling.
Grade 10’s Ada C. and Allison C. received Honorable Mention along with the BC Nature Award and the Betsy Bennet Marine Stewardship Award for their study on an oil spill absorbing device.
Placing Bronze in the intermediate Division, our grade 9’s Lina Y. and Zakiya A.’s project Colour-phyll, was noted for Ingenuity in winning the Society for Canadian Women In Science and Technology (SWIST) Award and the SFU Department of Chemistry Award.
Grade 9 students Jason P. and Andrew X. created bioplastics from chitin and chitosan in winning Silver medals and the UBC Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Award.
Our Grade 8 team of Jonah C. and Eric F. came away with Honorable Mention for the creation and testing of polarizing privacy filters for LCD screens.
Grade 10 student Olivia L. from Earl Marriott Secondary School won Gold and three Special Awards. Her total is not included in the above scores summary, but Olivia was doing Science Fairs at Palmer in Grade 8 and part of Grade 9 before she moved to Surrey. This will be her second year going to the Canada Wide Fair as well. We consider her an Honorary Palmer Griffin!
Palmer is celebrating its 10th year in the GVRSF this year and this year’s remarkable result caps the tradition of excellence in the Sciences at Palmer. In the past nine years, Palmer Pre-AP/Incentive students have won five golds at the Canada-wise Fair and been the top science fair school in Richmond School District.
UNIVERSITY OF WATERLOO 2016 MATH CONTEST RESULTS
The official results have arrived from the University of Waterloo for the Pascal, Cayley and Fermat Math Contests. These contests were written back in February by approximately 85 Palmer Grade 8, 9, 10 and 11 students.
On the Grade 11 Fermat Contest, congratulations to Brian H., Morris H. and Frank F. as the top three students at Palmer, and to Brian as the school champion. Palmer’s Fermat team placed 5th out of the 14 schools in our zone of Richmond-Delta.
On the Grade 10 Cayley Contest, the top three Palmer students are Jason B., Beckett Z. and Paul Z., and congratulations to Jason as the school champion. The Cayley team placed 4th in Richmond-Delta.
And on the Grade 9 Pascal Contest (also written by Grade 8 students), the top three Palmer students are Jonathan C. in Grade 8 (who is also the school champion), followed by Frank W. and Liang L. in Grade 9. The Pascal team placed FIRST in our zone, thus earning a Zone Championship! In addition, Palmer’s Grade 9 team made the Canadian Honour Roll by placing 33rd out of the 1300 schools in Canada that wrote the Pascal Contest.
On each of the three contests, Palmer students who place in the top 25% of all the contestants in Canada will receive a Certificate of Distinction at the Awards Ceremony in June. The names of these students will be posted shortly outside Mr. Wong’s room.
Congratulations to all of Palmer’s Math contest award winners and contestants!
Palmer’s Junior Math Teams Place in the Top 10 at the 2016 Math Challengers Provincial Finals
On Saturday, April 9th, Palmer’s Grade 8 and 9 Math teams competed at the annual Math Challengers Provincial Finals tournament held at UBC.
After a challenging day of problem solving, Palmer’s Grade 9 team finished 9th out of the 20 schools that qualified for the Provincial Finals, and our Grade 8 team finished 6th in the province, again out of 20 teams. In addition, Palmer’s Jonathan C. individually came in 8th in the province out of approximately 110 Grade 8 competitors, and Kevin Y. (a Grade 6 student from General Currie Elementary – one of Palmer’s feeder elementary schools – who attends Palmer’s Junior Math Club) finished 3rd overall.
Palmer was one of only five schools that managed to place both their Grade 8 and 9 teams in the Top 10 in the province.
Kudos to both Math teams (rosters are below), and to student coaches Morris H., Tina F., Emily G., Jason B. and Joseph S. for their dedicated work and assistance with the teams!
Grade 8 Team: Jonathan C., Eric F., Derrick S., Kevin Y. (Currie) & Edward Z. (Currie)
Grade 9 Team: Christy C., Liang L., Tiffany T., Frank W., & Andrew X.
Jonathan C. (Grade 8 Team, 8th place individual finish)
Palmer Grade 9 Team Competes at the 2016 BCDI Provincial Finals Tournament
On Saturday, April 9th, 2016, Palmer’s Grade 9 Destination Imagination (DI) team competed at the BC DI provincial finals tournament, which was held at Kwantlen Park Secondary School in Surrey.
The team’s challenge was to create and present a “whodunit?” mystery story set on Earth in a time period before 1990, complete with sets, props and costuming. The mystery story had to include three suspect characters and a technical clue of the team’s design that helped to solve the mystery. In addition, the team had to solve an instant challenge problem on-site for which they had no prior knowledge.
Competing in a division against teams from Grades 9 to 12, Palmer’s Grade 9’s came in 4th, just missing out on a 3rd place trophy by 5 points, or the equivalent of one-and-a-half percent in scoring. Kudos to the team for their terrific presentation, and to student coaches Jana C. and Maggie Y. for their hard work and assistance.
Team members: Zakiya A., Carolyn G., Angela M., Leo T. & Crystal W.
2014/15 INCENTIVE SLIDESHOW
CAMP SQUAMISH 2015 (October 14-16)
The Incentive Grade 8, 9 and 10 classes recently returned from our annual Fall retreat, held from Wednesday, October 14th to Friday, October 16th at the Easter Seal camp on the shores of the Squamish River in Brackendale, BC. Throughout the three days, our teaching staff and student campers were treated to glorious sunshine and perfect weather!
During camp, the students were put into nine multigrade teams of nine or ten students each, together with a Grade 11 or 12 Incentive student who acted as a team mentor. The teams then went through a series of activities designed to promote team-building and the formation of connections between students in different grades in the Pre-AP/Incentive Program. Aided by the mentors, Palmer Pre-AP/Incentive teachers ran carefully planned activities that centred around this year’s theme of “Linked”. Activities included teacher-led team-building games, a simulation game based on inter-culture communication, a critical-thinking treasure hunt, an art/craft activity (making a decorative pillow), a mentor-led team-building session, a chant-writing and performing session, a creative-thinking Destination Imagination Instant Challenge, and of course the traditional campfire sing-alongs. Some of the activities allowed teams to earn points, which were tallied at the end of the two-and-a-half days to determine the top team at camp. In addition, teams were assigned into three Houses (Cheakamus, Chilcotin and Cowichan), each consisting of three teams, and the House with the highest aggregate team points at the end was awarded the Camp Squamish Grafton Cup as the Top House.
At the end of a close and intense but friendly competition, it was Team 3 (led by Grade 12 mentor Lizzie Y.) who won the Top Team medals, while Cheakamus (comprised of Teams 1, 2 and 3) won the trophy for Top House.
Kudos and thanks to the following mentors for their excellent work at camp: Jana C., Tina F., Amanda K., Oscar L., Mary L., Sarah L., Emma L., Neha N., Sabrina O., Maria St., and Lizzie Y.! Kudos as well to the teachers who were involved in the organization and planning for camp, and who accompanied the Pre-AP/Incentive students for the three days: Mrs. Calaciura, Ms. Naidu, Mrs. Roberts, Mr. Sidhu and Mr. Wong. Everyone is already eagerly looking forward to next year’s Camp Squamish!
PALMER’S GRADE 8 & 9 MATH TEAMS COMPETE AT THE 2015 MATH CHALLENGERS LOWER MAINLAND REGIONAL COMPETITION AT UBC
Palmer’s Grade 8 & 9 Math teams participated in the 2015 Math Challengers Lower Mainland Regional Competition at UBC on Saturday, February 14th. Both teams competed hard during the day-long event that was attended by approximately 500 student competitors. The competition included two individual contest rounds, a team round, and finally a head-to-head buzzer round where the top ten individuals in each pool battled each other one-on-one to determine the fastest individual champion.
Frank W. from Palmer’s Grade 8 team placed 7th out of 70 students in the individual round in our competition pool, while Paul Z. from the Grade 9 team placed 5th out of 60 students. In addition, Palmer’s Grade 9 team placed 3rd overall in our pool that included teams from schools such as Saint Georges, Burnaby South, Lord Byng, Magee, Prince of Wales and others. The Grade 9 team thus qualifies for the Provincial Finals Competition, which will be held on Saturday, April 11th at Simon Fraser University. The Grade 8 team is currently waiting to hear if it will qualify for a wildcard spot at the provincials.
Kudos to all the Math Team members for continuing to maintain Palmer’s tradition of mathematical prowess at these competitions! Grade 8 Team members included Christy C., Liang L., Melanie T., Frank W. and Andrew X.. The Grade 9 Team members were Jason B., Kelvin H., Albert L., Amanda W. and Paul Z.. Thanks also to the following students who gave up their Saturday to volunteer at the tournament: Daniel C., Tina F., Morris H., Danlu L., Alvin M. and Jack Z.. Way to go, Griffins!
SCIENCE FAIR 2015
Approximately 90 Grade 8 to 10 Pre-AP/Incentive Science students competed in Palmer’s 9th Annual Science Fair on Thursday, January 29, 2015. Each year, Palmer’s Science Fair provides students with opportunities to gain experience in long-term planning and scientific experimental design. Over a period of three months, students work diligently to have their projects ready for presentation at the end of January.
The format mirrors that of university style formal labs with three categories of projects: Experiments, Studies and Innovation/Inventions. Included in this year’s Science Fair were projects about video game addictions, magnetic missile launchers, edible water bottles, and many more.
Under the direction of Palmer’s Science teachers, 40 senior students took on the responsibilities of judging, compiling scores and coordinating the event. In addition, approximately 200 elementary school students and other community members came by to view the projects. Included among the spectators were Richmond School District Superintendent Monica Pamer, as well as Assistant Superintendent Wendy Lim.
Kudos to all those who participated and congratulations to the winners! For more photos, go to http://palmer.sd38.bc.ca/?q=ScienceFair2015
PALMER PRE-AP/INCENTIVE STUDENTS SCORE 100% ON JUNE 2014 PROVINCIAL EXAMS
All of Palmer’s Pre-AP/Incentive Program students did very well on their June 2014 Provincial Examinations. Of special note, Palmer had a record number of our Pre-AP/Incentive Program and Honours Math Program students scoring 100% on these Provincial Exams. Congratulations and kudos to the following students for this outstanding achievement!
Foundations & PreCalculus Mathematics 10:
- Jessica D., Tina F., Emily G., Morris H., Rachel K., Vandy L. and Emma L.
- In addition, both Emily G. and Ashley Y. (who scored 99% on the Provincial Exam) achieved scores of 100% on their overall course mark (which combines the school mark and provincial exam mark). Congratulations on attaining this excellent and rarely-accomplished feat!
- Ray L. and Ashley Y.
The 2013/14 Potluck unfortunately had to be cancelled. However, a group of students still worked hard together to produce a slideshow celebrating the year’s Incentive events, camps and activities. Thanks to Bill C., Jocelyn T., Mary L., Vivien H., and Ashley C. for their great efforts in producing the slideshow, which may be viewed below:
2013/14 incentive Slideshow
Palmer Hosts 2014 BC Destination Imagination (DI) Provincial Tournament
The 2014 BCDI Provincial Tournament was held at Palmer on Saturday, April 12th, attended by over 80 student teams and around 800 people. Hosted by a small army of Palmer Incentive students under the coordination of Palmer teachers Ms. Kwan and Mr. Wong, the day-long tournament ran ultra-smoothly, and Palmer’s Incentive students earned much praise and many compliments from BCDI and the tournament attendees.
DI is an international creative problem solving enrichment and competition program that allows students from Grades 3 to 12 to work in teams to solve complex Challenges, and to present their solutions to these Challenges at tournaments from the regional to the global level. Palmer has a long and successful tradition with DI, having run the extracurricular program and fielding many successful teams since the mid-1980’s, and having sent numerous teams to the Global Finals.
This year, Palmer had two teams competing at the Provincial Tournament. Mr.Sidhu’s team (“A LoL in the Action”) competed in the Fine Arts challenge while Ms. Henrickson and Mr. Chan’s team (“CORNTOS”) competed in the Scientific challenge. Both teams had been working since October building their own props and sets, writing their own scripts, and solving their DI challenge. Both teams did very well and were invited to attend the DI Global Finals Tournament in Knoxville, Tennessee during the third week of May, but declined due to the high cost of travel.
Following this article are some pictures from the Provincial Tournament at Palmer. Kudos and good work to all the Palmer team members and volunteers!
CAMP SQUAMISH 2013 (October 16-18)
The Incentive Grade 8 – 10 classes have just returned from three days at our annual Fall retreat, held at the Easter Seal camp on the shores of the Squamish River in Brackendale, BC. There was glorious sunshine and perfect weather – and even a visit by a mother black bear and her two cubs. The students went through a series of activities designed to promote team-building and the formation of connections between students in different grades in the Incentive Program.
Aided by ten hand-picked Incentive Grade 11 and 12 mentors, Palmer Incentive teachers ran carefully planned activities that centred around this year’s theme of “Perspectives”. Activities included team-building games, a simulation Food Chain game, a critical-thinking treasure hunt, a t-shirt art activity, a board games tournament, a chant-writing and performing session, a creative-thinking Destination Imagination Instant Challenge, and of course the traditional campfire sing-alongs.
Students were put into multigrade teams of 10-11 students, and engaged in friendly team and house competitions in the different activities over three busy days. At the end of a close competition, it was Team 1 (led by Grade 11 mentor Amanda W.) who won the Top Team medals, while Chilcotin (comprised of Teams 4, 5 and 6) won the Grafton Cup as the Top House.
Kudos and thanks to the following mentors for their excellent work at camp: Alvin M., Amanda W., Annie H., Bill C., Bonnie Z., Daniel C., Danlu L., Inayah M., Jack Z., and Jocelyn T.. Kudos as well to the teachers who were involved in the planning and/or who travelled to camp: Ms. Calaciura, Mr. Chow, Mrs. Coyle, Ms. Naidu, Mr. Sidhu and Mr. Wong, as well as Vice-Principal Ms. Timmins. Everyone is already eagerly looking forward to next year’s Camp Squamish!
A selection of photos from this year’s camp follows (double-click on each photo to enlarge):
- Brief stop at Alice Lake for a brisk walk around the lake before finally heading home. Happy camp memories!
This year’s Incentive Potluck – held on Thursday, May 30, 2013 – was attended by close to 300 people, including students, parents and staff, which therefore made it the single largest Potluck gathering ever held at Palmer! During the evening, the year’s Incentive events and achievements were celebrated, interspersed with musical and other performances from many of the Incentive students in attendance. A great time and great food was enjoyed by all, and at the end, the traditional student-produced Incentive Slideshow capped the event. Thank you to all who attended this year’s Potluck, and a special thank you to all the students and staff who helped to coordinate and run the show! A list of all the members of the organizing committee as well as photos from the Potluck may be found at the end of the slideshow below.
Saturday, April 13, 2013
Palmer’s two Destination Imagination (DI) teams competed at the 2013 BCDI Provincial Finals Tournament at Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Surrey, and had a very successful day.
After a full day of competition, both teams earned first place in their respective divisions in the Instant Challenge problem solving competition.
In their long-term Team Challenge competitions:
The Grade 8 team had to produce and perform a nov-verbal play, complete with costuming, backdrops and set, as well as music in the Theatre Arts challenge, and came in first place!
The Grade 9 team had to design and construct a light-weight structure that would hold as much weight as possible while withstanding a side impact after every certain number of weights placed (as well as performing a skit incorporating the testing of the structure) in the Structures challenge, and came in second place!
Both teams therefore continue a long-standing Palmer tradition of being invited to represent BC at the DI Global Finals Tournament, which will be held during the third week of May 2013 in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Congratulations to the Grade 8 team of Jana C., Tina F., Rachel K., Iris L., Jenny L., Queenie N., and Maggie Y., coached jointly by Mr. Chan, Ms. Liu and Ms. Henrickson!
Congratulations also to the Grade 9 team of Jancis B., Jarrett C., Henry C., Philip E., Stanley H., James L., and Henry Z., coached by Mr. Sidhu!