IESO 2015 has scientific, cultural activities and integration between delegations

Published: Friday, 18 September 2015



As started on Monday, 14, the ninth edition of the International Earth Science Olympiad – IESO, has a dynamic program that includes scientific activities, opportunities to exchange experiences and interaction among participants, cultural performances, visitations to the city's sights and technical trips to the campuses of the Federal Institute of the South of Minas. The 23 participating teams, until the 20th of September, will make various tests on geology, meteorology, environmental science and astronomy.

To initiate the activities, the delegations met some sights of Poços de Caldas. They went to the Square of the Apes and there they had an explanation about the thermal waters, and also the Japanese Nook. At the end of the first day, they attended the presentation of Capoeira, made by some boys from the Afro-Brazilian Center.

On Tuesday morning, students visited the top of Serra de São Domingos, where they met the Christ Redeemer statue and received information about the geological formations and mineral resources of the region. In addition, members of the delegations of the United States, Israel and Thailand were welcomed by the mayor of Poços de Caldas, Eloísio do Carmo Lourenço, who opened the doors of his office to talk to the students.

The afternoon was reserved for the application of theoretical tests. The tests had the total duration of three hours. Some of the students said they were pessimistic about the test, who found difficult considering the content presented, while other students were optimistic and looking forward to the results. According to the competitors, the format of the race this year, demanded more reasoning than memorization, so the issues demanded more reflection from them.

The Israeli student Itay Gat expressed confidence regarding the results when he left the exam room. He considered that the exam was easyful, concluding that this year's edition is better than the previous ones. Although he has not actually participated in other editions of the Olympiad, he used the previous material to prepare himself for IESO 2015.

The program continued with the visit of mentors to the campuses of the Federal Institute of the South of Minas. They got to know the structure and functioning of the units located in the districts of Muzambinho and Machado. During the visits, mentors had the opportunity to meet labs and production sectors.

The Iranian Maryam Abedini is participating for the first time of the Olympics, as an observer. "This is a very good event and it's been a very special moment for all of us. The students will do as much as they can, but the overall level is very good," she said.

The competition continued on Wednesday afternoon, with ITFI (International Team Field Investigation). The 23 delegations were divided into three groups. One of them held the activity called "The mystery of The ball stone". Participants collected information and samples to explain the rock formation of the famous tourist spot of Poços de Caldas. After the visit, they gathered in groups to discuss and analyze the samples and it was given to them the task of raising three hypotheses and arguments to explain the results of their collected data in a presentation to the public.

The president of the International Geoscience Education Organization, Rajasekhariah Shankar, accompanied the activity and said that "ITFI is important to make students interact with each other and work as a team." "No scientist works alone, and it is necessary that the candidates discuss among themselves and come together with conclusions about the analysis made in the stone”.

During the whole Thursday, 17/09, students made the practical tests at Moinho farm, in the rural area of Poços de Caldas, as well as at Véu das Noivas waterfall, a famous landmark . The activities were prepared based on tests in astronomy, hydrological and meteorological areas.

The student Kai- Hung Cheng, Taiwan, said “I have good expectations about the competition." "The Brazilian countryside is beautiful and very different from my country. I'm really enjoying it," he said. Leonard Schmih, from Germany, said that the experience has been very positive and that it will help him in his personal life. In the professional area, he does not know yet, but he wants to study engineering or architecture.

The challenges continue on Friday, 18, with an exam called EPS (Earth Science Project), which proposes for the students to do a research about the El Niño weather phenomenon.

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