This week year 9 have had the opportunity to start an investigation into air pollutants in and around Turves Green Boy’s School. Our visitors introduced the topic of air pollution and we talked about sources of air pollution that affect us from the burning of fossil fuels – particularly diesel – to sandstorms in the Sahara and Volcanos in Iceland. Some particles such as soot are a tenth of the width of a human hair!
We then heard about their research into how it affects us and why we should be worried. Some small particles from the air can get past our bodies natural defences and get into our lungs and even our bloodstream. We even heard how vapour from “Vapes” are being shown to decrease the amount our lungs can expand.
Students then made their own small particle traps using clipboards and petroleum jelly. They thought about which areas around school they would like to test and our walls are currently adorned with particle traps. Researchers will come back in February to help us to analyse the data we collect using mini microscopes.
Many thanks to Mr Neil Todd, Dr Dan Jones, Dr Natalie Poulter, Dr Eleyna Slater and Katie Spencer from the University of Birmingham for sharing their time and expertise with us. Also, thanks to our fantastic students who shared their ideas and predictions during the sessions.