The Science in Fireworks!
Written by Sparks Student Reporter
Melcher Monk, a former teacher and vice principal of Pine Forge Academy, has returned to the Science Department for the 2015-16 school year bringing new life to the science program through weekly experiments.
Recently, Mr. Monk’s Integrated Science class conducted a fireworks show for the school. The assignment was to find the chemical composition of the firework from its displayed color using a technique called flame testing. Essentially, a firework tube is filled with different metals and after a firework explodes, the electrons in the metals go into an excited state because of the increase in energy. The electrons release their surplus energy by producing light. Different metals burn in different colors giving off the familiar illuminations we see in fireworks today.
Mr. Monk is truly a dedicated teacher who believes that hands-on learning is much better than teaching verbatim from a textbook. He brings ingenuity to his experiments, and has been responsible for shows such as the Spooky Science Lab. This lab was a demonstration of some of the ways haunted houses work. The experiments did not condone the “holiday” of Halloween but were examples of what can be done with science.
It is through these exciting activities that PFA students are developing an appreciation for science!