Caelum’s Mind Over Matter Project

Caelum’s Science Blog Post 

The science unit, Mind over Matter, was informative and fun. At the beginning we started to learn about matter and how to describe it. I learned that matter is everywhere and has both chemical and physical properties.  I also learned it can be described in two main ways, qualitative and quantitative. For example, if you were to describe colour, texture, shape, smell, and size you would be describing qualitative properties.  On the other hand if you were describing measurements about matter you would be describing the quantitative properties.  Examples of this include measurements such as size, weight, mass, volume, density and temperature.  

In this unit I also learned that some matter changes states but other matter doesn’t. The states of matter are solid, liquid, gas, and plasma.  Temperature makes matter change its state.  The Kinetic Molecular Theory (KMT) explains how matter changes states.  The KMT has a few main points. 

All matter is made of atoms (really small particles)

The atoms are always moving

The speed at which they move is dependent on energy (temperature)

Atoms are made up of different things and have been discovered over time by different scientists.  The first scientists to theorize the atom believed matter looked more like a cookie in the sense that it was made up of all these tiny particles, which he called Atomos (uncuttable). There have been 4 iterations of the atomic model, each built on the previous theory which grew more and more accurate to what we believe in our present time.  The latest theory is called the Bohr theory and reflects our current understanding of the atomic model.  We now know that all atoms have a nucleus, protons, electrons and neutrons.  Each part has a different charge.  Electrons are now believed to exist in little energy clouds which surround the nucleus. 

We did an experiment with Gummie Bears to demonstrate diffusion and osmosis.  During the experiment we filled 3 different cups with different liquids.  The first cup had baking soda, vinegar, and we added pressure by using a balloon. For this cup we saw that the Gummie Bear held its shape very well but lost its colour. The second cup had baking soda, with vinegar but we didn’t add a balloon (pressure). In this cup the Gummie Bear seemed to expand because it absorbed more liquid and it also became even more discoloured than the previous bear had. The third cup was filled with vinegar and water.  The Gummie Bear in this cup expanded significantly more and lost almost all its colour.  All these reactions took around 24 hours to occur. The last cup was the control cup and only had water in it.  This Gummie Bear expanded the most and absorbed a lot of the water in the cup.  It also lost most of its colour because of the expansion. If you want an in-depth disruption of the project click here

Game Pitch Ideas

The evolution of my game pitch was a challenging but satisfying process. Initially, I had envisioned an open world shooter game where the player embodied an atom and collected electrons to become a fully formed atom, while shooting electrons at enemies. However, after careful consideration, I recognized that the game lacked depth and simply involved mindlessly eliminating obstacles, so I decided to start anew. My second attempt was a top-down RPG where the player gathered protons, neutrons, and electrons to become a fully formed atom, but it was too easy and lacked complexity. Finally, I settled on creating a puzzle obstacle platformer that truly showcased the potential of an atom’s properties. In this game, the player controlled an atom with the ability to separate body parts using walls with the same element and solve intricate puzzles by utilizing their remaining body parts. It was not an easy journey, but the final game was a product that I was confident in presenting to the world.

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