This is a Citizen Science project focused on radon gas.
Radon is a gas without flavor, odorless and colorless. It comes from the ground and from building materials such as cement and ceramics, dispersing in the air, so that each structure has a certain concentration of radon. Even at home and in your class. Radon levels are usually small and harmless, but long-term exposure to high concentrations of radon can have serious medical consequences.
The Radon Survey is a new project designed to map the radon concentrations in buildings in Israel and thus raise awareness of the presence of gas and ways to protect it. The Radon Poll project was developed in cooperation with the Center for Excellence in Citizen Science at the School and the Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Technion, and offers an opportunity for students to take part in a unique and authentic environmental study. In the framework of OSOS we take the basic project and develop in to be used as a platform for kids-teaching-kids.
The aim is that students will learn about the characteristics of the gas and the health risks involved in it. After learning about the problem, the students conduct measurements in their own homes and in public buildings in their local surrounding. They use both the theoretical knowledge they gain and the empirical findings to raise the public's knowledge about this rather unfamiliar phenomenon.
Acquired knowledge and skills
Participation in the project enables the development of statistical thinking among students through research, in an environment enhanced technology. For this purpose, the CODAP site is used, which provides an environment for statistical performance in an inviting and non-computational manner, thus enabling the development of statistical understanding.
Radon gas is linked to science curricula in different subject matters:
- Chemistry: gases, radioactivity, adsorbents, activated charcoal
- Biology: respiratory system
- Environment studies: radon, radiation
- Health care systems, health sciences
Opportunities to collaborate with stakeholders
As part of the project, teachers will have a short training by proffesionals from the Center for Citizen Science (TCSS) at the Technion Institute.
The students will study three to six lessons (according to the teacher's preference) on radon and its measurement, using lesson plans written by the TCSS. They will also learn about the subject with a lecture given by one of the researchers.
Later on, the students will perform radon gas measurements at the school and in their homes, and upload the data to the national database of the project. This will include involvement of the students' families.
At the end of the process, a product will be prepared to help raise awareness of the issue among the community and / or other schools (by transferring activities to primary school students). The project has a national contribution to society and the community: It is a national educational project that provides important information to the public on the Radon problem by increasing awareness of Radon gas, its dangerous effects and methods of risk reduction.