Category Archives: Grade 9

Collaboration Fluency

Our project so far was to find out which combination of materials could attract a cork the best. In the video below, I rub a plastic spoon with fur. The result is that t he spoon attracts the cork. When I rub the spoon with fur the electrons from the fur transfers to the spoon. Since the cork is neutral, it will be attracted to the spoon

After the cork has gained electrons and the spoon loses most of its electrons, the spoon will actually repel the cork, showed in the video below.

ebonite Copper Aluminum Straw Glass Wood Lucite spoon
Fur repels attracts attracts Attracts then repels attracts attracts attracts repels
Polyester attracts attracts attracts repels attracts Little attraction Nothing attracts
cotton repels repels Very little attraction attracts attracts Very little attraction Very strong attraction repels
silk attracts attracts attracts  Super Attracts attracts Nothing Very strong attraction repels
Wool attracts Nothing Nothing attracts attracts attracts repels repels
Garbage Bag attracts Nothing attracts attracts Nothing Nothing Nothing Attracts

Many aspects of the collaboration went well. We were able to find information that was able to help us advance to the next step. We had a general idea of what our plan was. Some things that didn’t quite do so well, was the amount of distractions around the room. Others talking to our group off-topic and vice-versa. It was partly my job to put an end to this, but sometimes, a group member is going to do more work than others, and in my case, that’s okay. I was able to make my group take a step back and approach our plan in a different way. Our group was now focused on our task and we ended up with the table above showing how all the materials reacted with the acetate.

One thing that I would do differently or consider is spending more time making sure that my group members were really going to help me on the project. I feel that if I chose different partners, the project would go completely differently. Maybe one or two group members needed a reminder to stay on task, but that shouldn’t have been the case in the first place.

Another thing I would do differently is maybe doing some more research on how to efficiently test how the materials would react to the acetate. Many groups (including mine) didn’t know that they had to zero the acetate/cork and many didn’t ground themselves when testing, remaining on their chairs and leaning their elbows on the table. In the event that I will be testing charges on objects once again, I will remember to take what I’ve learned from this project and apply it to what I would currently be doing.



Mr. Horton’s son, who has very frequent headaches swore by Advil Liqui Gels for their fastest relief out of many pain relieving medications that he has tried. Our job, as a team of 3-4 was to start brainstorming some ideas on how our experiment would play out. In our groups, we would research on a topic and see what we could find to help us on our experiment. Our experiment was determining which pill out of four dissolved the fastest.The four pills we were testing was an Advil Liqui Gel, Tylenol, Motrin, and a regular Acetaminophen tablet. This experiment’s results will determine whether or not Mr. Horton’s son’s claims are true.


We had many questions asked during this process, such as

“Which procedure would be the most effective for dissolving the pills?”

Some more questions were asked regarding how we could best simulate the environment of a human stomach such as,

“What liquid will the pills dissolve in?”

“Would the liquid of choice be heated up?”

Other questions were asked,

“What materials will be used in our experiment?”

“What precautions would we have to take for this experiment?”

Our group ended up using a water/hydrochloric acid mixture of about 10ml of water to 5 drops of acid. Our bodies naturally have hyrdrochloric acid in our stomach, so that seemed like a rational thing to add to our experiment. We all decided to not heat up the liquid mixture.

Each pill got its own test tube and would be timed individually. After about 1 minute and 50 seconds have elapsed in our timing process, we would give the test tube 5 taps near the bottom of the tube in hopes of speeding up the process. The timing process would end when the pill had fully dissolved in its test tube.

For precautions, safety was out of the question. Safety gear such as gloves and safety glasses would be used, and one person would be handling the acid as it is an irritant that could make your skin itch and if too many people are handling the equipment, there is an increase chance of some sort of accident happening like a spill,or damaged equipment.

As for materials used, here is our Bill of Materials:

  • 1 Beaker
  • 4 Test Tubes
  • At least 5ml of Hydrochloric acid
  • Timer
  • ~50ml of water
  • Safety gear (Gloves, Goggles)
  • 4 different pain relieving pills



We were able to retrieve usable data from this experiment. We found that the Tylenol pill was the most effective at dissolving and dissolved in 2:04.66 while, suprisingly, the Advil Liqui Gel never fully dissolved and inevitably took the whole experiment’s time to see a noticeable difference in the shape of the pill, 42:53.77–.

Here are the times of each pill:

Pill  Time to dissolve 
Tylenol 2:04.66
“Ace” 4:58.19
Motrin 5:33.48
Advil 42:53.77–
Advil Liqui Gel being tested.
Tylenol being tested.

Possible safety hazards that were averted were any contact with the acid, confusion and mishandleing of equipment between all group members, and no spillage of any liquids or damaged equipment.


Our experiment gave us results, but I don’t think they were the most accurate. The pills tested are meant to be ingested and dissolve in a completely different environment than in cold tap water and hydrochloric acid. While hydrochloric acid is in our stomach, there is more of a cocktail of acids that help break down our food and as our experiment was testing, dissolve pills. Another essential aspect of our experiment, while not necessary, was to find a way to heat up our mixture. Our internal body temperature is about 37° celsius and heating up the mixture would provide an even more realistic environment for our pills to dissolve in. Even enclosing the test tubes or capping them would positively help in our experiment as it would not allow the mixture to be constantly exposed to open, cold air. 

Another event that happened in our experiment was that the Advil Liqui Gel was tested first, and in the end, was the only pill that hadn’t dissolved. This forced us to start testing another pill simultaneously which was not apart of our experiment while it did speed up our procedure. In the event that this experiment is tested once more, testing all the pills simultaneously will be more efficient than testing one by one, as long as each group member keeps an eye on a designated pill looking for any visual queues that the pill had fully dissolved.

Advil Liqui Gel and Acetaminophen tablet being timed, and recorded simultaneously.


Community Connection

Who I interviewed: (Robert Crowe, Project Engineer @ Seaspan Vancouver Shipyard)

For this assignment, I chose to interview my father whose current occupation is being a ‘Project Engineer’ at Seaspan.



Roles and Responsibilities of the Interviewee:

In short, the position of Project Engineer means that you are in charge of a design team who is in charge of providing the designs for a ship. This job requires a substantial amount of cooperation and leadership.

Seaspan Shipyard’s crane, “Big Blue”.

Why I interviewed this individual:

I am interested in working in some variety of a design team that designs large-scale projects such as shipbuilding, and architectural design which is similar to the occupation that my father is in.

Seaspan Shipyard’s off-site office building.

I asked him these six questions, and these are his responses:

Why are you passionate about your job?

Response: “My job is designing ships for the Navy. I’m passionate about that because I’ve always wanted to be in the Navy and I’ve served the Navy for 28 years and I get to give back with my knowledge and design ships for the Navy”. 

What obstacles have you faced to get where you are today?

Response:  “I don’t consider them obstacles or if anything challenges. Challenges were moving with my family and knowing that my family had to move to a new place and start all over again with school, friends, and jobs”. 

What advice would you pass on to someone who is interested in what you are doing?

Response: “Spend a lot of time establishing your network, don’t burn any bridges because you don’t realize until you get to where I am now that it’s a small world”. 

Would you open to further contact from Riverside students and if so, how can someone contact you?

Response: “Yes, absolutely. They can contact me at work”. 

What basic skills or “life skills” are important for your job?

Response: “Grammar, expanded vocabulary, math”. 

What inspired you to become a Project Engineer?

Response: “As a ship operator and being at sea, I was always intrigued by how the ship worked, and how it was built and designed, and that guided me to where I am now”. 


What I learned from this interview enlightened me on what to expect, the hardships that may come my way, as well as basic advice to help me in the workplace. For example, his response about advice was, “Spend a lot of time establishing your network, don’t burn any bridges because you don’t realize until you get to where I am now that it’s a small world”. 

A photo of the “John Franklin” a Coast Guard and Fish Research Vessel being built for the Canadian Government launched in the month of December, 2017

This advice taught me that expanding a network such as a digital portfolio will help me establish the job that I desire, as well as to be driven towards opportunity.  The interview itself connects to my interests by teaching me certain aspects and basic skills that will help me thrive in the workplace. An example of this is having the need of cooperation and leadership skills and having knowledge of basic grammar, an expanded vocabulary, and math.


This interviewed helped me gain a better understanding on what I possibly have to go through if I choose to go down this career path. What I gained from this is that you need resilience, knowledge, and connections to get that dream job that you want.

Link to Interviewee’s Workplace:

Everything I know about Exponents

1) Represent repeated multiplication with exponents

3x3x3x3 = 81         3^4 = 81

2) Describe how powers represent repeated multiplication

The power above is 3^4. Powers have a base and an exponent. The base (3) would represent the number multiplied by the exponent (4) as shown in number one. The exponent is how many times 3 would be multiplied. This power would be the equivalent to 3x3x3x3.

3) Demonstrate the difference between the exponent and the base by building models of a given power, such as 2^3 and 3^2

4) Demonstrate the difference between two given powers in which the exponent and the base are interchanged by using repeated mulitplication, such as 2^3 and 3^2

2^3 = 2x2x2 = 8

3^2 = 3×3 = 9

5) Evaluate powers with integral bases (excluding base 0) and whole number exponents.

({-2})^4 = (-2)(-2)(-2)(-2) = 16

5^3 = 5x5x5 = 125

6^5 = 6x6x6x6x6 = 7,776

({-4})^5 = (-4)(-4)(-4)(-4)(-4) = -1024

6) Expain the role of parentheses in powers by evaluating a given set of powers such as ({-2})^4 , ({-2}^4)-2^4

With ({-2})^4 , the repeated multiplication would be (-2)(-2)(-2)(-2) which would equal 16.

With ({-2}^4) , You are applying the exponent of 4 to the base of 2, then you will apply the negative symbol in the form of -1.

-1x2x2x2x2 = -16

With {-2}^4 , You are essentially doing the same thing as ({-2}^4).

-1x2x2x2x2 = -16

7) Explain the exponent laws for multiplying and dividing powers with the same base.

(Product Law)

When multiplying powers with the same base,  keep the base, then add the exponents. For example, 3^4 x 3^5 = 3^9 = 19,683

(Quotient Law)

When diving powers with the same base, you keep the base, then subtract the exponents. For example,

3^8 ÷ 3^3 = 3^5 = 243

8) Explain the exponent laws for raising a product and quotient to an exponent.

(Power Law)

When raising a power to an exponent you keep the base, multiply the exponent(s), and if there is a coefficient, apply the exponent to the coefficient.

For example,

2 * (5^3)^2 = 2^2 * 5^6 = 4*15,625 = 62,500


9) Explain the law for powers with an exponent of zero.

Any base (except 0) with an exponent of zero will equal 1.

4^0 = 1

0^0 = 0

10) Use patterns to show that a power with an exponent of zero is equal to one.

4^5 = 1024

4^4 = 256

4^3 = 64

4^2 = 16

4^1 = 4

4^0 = 1

The base (4) with exponent (0) will essentially have 4 divide into itself, so 4  ÷  4 = 1

11) Explain the law for powers with negative exponents.

When dealing with negative exponents, any base (except zero) raised to a negative exponent will equal the reciprocal of the base raised to a positive exponent, for example:

4^{-3} = \frac {4^{-3}}{1} = \frac {1}{4^3}

12) Use patterns to explain the negative exponent law.

3^5 = 243

3^4 = 81

3^3 = 27

3^2 = 9

3^1 = 3

3^0 = 1

3^{-1} = \frac{1}{3^1}

13) I can apply the exponent laws to powers with both integral and variable bases.

Yes, I can.

x^5 * x^4 = x^9

5^8 ÷5^5 = 5^3 = 125

(2^2)^4  = 2^6 = 64

x^0 = 1


14) I can identify the error in a simplification of an expression involving powers.


(2a^3b^2)^3 = 6a^9b^6

(2a^3b^2)^3 = 8a^9b^6

When simplifying a power using the power rule, you have to remember to apply the coefficient to the exponent not mulitply them together. With the first example above, the coefficient was multiplied by 3 rather than applied the exponent of 3. This made it equal 6 rather than 8, which is incorrect.

15) Use the order of operations on expressions with powers.

(5x^3)^2 x (2x^5)^4 = 5^2x^6 x 2^4x^5 = 25*16x^{11} = 400x^{11}

I first did the power law which states that the exponents are applied to the coefficients, and the powers are raised by the exponent. Then, I did the product law which multiples the coefficients and adds the exponents of the powers of the same base.

16) Determine the sum and difference of two powers.

3^4 + 6^3 = 81 + 216 = 297

3^84^4 = 6,561 – 256 = 6,305

17) Identify the error in applying the order of operations in an incorrect solution

In equations like this, you would do the power law first. However, the negative exponent law was done first, here is the result.

(x^{-3}y^4z^3)^2 x (x^8y^3z^6) = \frac{y^4z^3}{x^3}

This is going to take much longer to find the answer. However, you can do the power law first.  So,

(x^{-6}y^8z^6) x (x^8y^3z^6) = (x^2y^11z^12)

18) Use powers to solve problems (measurement problems)

The side length of a cube is 5 cm, what is the volume of the cube?

Well, in order to find the volume of the cube, you have to find the length, the width, and the height, since this is a cube, they are all going to be equal so you can find the volume of the cube by doing this:

5^3 = 125 cm^3

19) Use powers to solve problems (growth problems)

A bacterium quadruples itself in 1 hour, How many will there be in 5 hours?

The base represents how many bacteria are produced, and the exponent represents time (5 hours).


20) Applying the order of operations on expressions with powers involving negative exponents and variable bases.

  1. (3x^{-2}y^7) ^2 ÷ (3x^{-4}y^8)^4 = (3^2x^{-4}y^14)  ÷ 3^4x^{16}y^{32} = (3^{-2}x^{-20}y^{-18}) = \frac{1}{3^2x^{20}y{18}}