On Monday, Mr. Warnock, our high school Physics and Math teacher, showed the 11th grade students a demonstration of alternative applications of electromagnetism as a way of cultivating interest in the topic. The technique that was was displayed can be used to create fractal art.
Mr. Warnock uses this technique as an artist himself, utilizing the electricity to burn fractals into the wood.
In this process, electricity (15,000 Volts) is applied across the wood which has been sprayed with water. The water then creates a path for an electric current to pass through. This current creates a chain reaction that causes the water to boil, then spark to any remaining water on the plank, which then burns the wood into these fractal patterns. Burnt wood can then conduct electricity, so the journey can continue.
Seeing and experiencing science through hand-on experiments is a hallmark of Waldorf science education. Our high school science curriculum includes:
9th Grade: Anatomy, Organic Chemistry, Thermodynamics, Geology
10th Grade: Mechanics, Acids & Bases, Meteorology, Physiology
11th Grade: Astronomy, Electricity & Magnetism, Botany, Chemistry
12th Grade: Zoology, Biochemistry, Optics, Science Elective (topics in Biology, Chemistry, Physics)
Therefore, students graduating from our high school leave with not only a theoretical understanding of scientific concepts, but tangible experiences that they can see real world applications of.