1st - 3rd April 2022
Welcome to the website of New Zealand's Young Scientists' Tournament. The 2022 NZYST is planned for April 2022 at Kristin School. An alternative online tournament will replace the in-person tournament if NZ's Covid 19 response prevents teams gathering in Albany.
Due to the covid-19 pandemic, 2020's tournament was unable to go ahead. The 2021 NZYST was small but successfully held in April 2021 at Wellington High School.
Follow the links to discover what it means to compete in a Young Scientists' Tournament, experience a Science Fight and learn about the global IYNT competitions that doing well in the NZYST would enable you to become a part of.
Students competing in New Zealand's Young Scientists' Tournament develop their skills of scientific inquiry, challenging themselves and their team-mates to investigate a range of scientific problems through experiment and research. Real scientific discoveries need to stand up to scrutiny. Discussion and debate with their peers, in front of experts, enables students to learn to communicate, defend and justify their work.
At the 2021 NZYST, 4 teams from 3 schools (Wellington High School, Wellington College and Kristin School) competed.
Newcomers Wellington College got the better of Kristin and Wellington High to become 2021 Champions:
The team that was selected for IYNT mostly had to prepare at home, with no in-person training camp. We actually expected the tournament to be postponed until late in the year as it had been in 2020, but found out in July that we would compete in August! Charlie Chen and Sumner Hancock flew to Auckland to join the Kristin team members Nicole Wong, Yeon Seo Kim, Catherine Chen and Angela Li.
New Zealand didn't start well and were placed 9th after the first science fight, out of 13 teams. Each day after that the team's position improved. Catherine's report on "Zinc Layers", Sumner's report on "Epidemiology" both scored very well, and the team performed their opposing and reviewing roles excellently. They were 4th entering the semi-finals. The plan to have Angela present her report on "Oxygen from plants" in the semi-final worked, and with good points from Sumner's opposition, the team were through to the final. Charlie Chen reported "Liquid Layers" flawlessly, however the jury didn't give him the reward he deserved and the team had to settle for silver medals.
It turns out that even competing in an international science tournament virtually through an online platform can really bond a team, and provide thrilling experiences that will be cherished for a lifetime.
At the 2019 NZYST, 9 teams from 6 schools (Wellington High School, Auckland Grammar School, Hutt Valley High School, St Patrick's College (Wellington), New Plymouth Girls' High School and Kristin School) competed. Scores before the final were:
115.6 Auckland Grammar School 1
110.4 Wellington High School ICP
108.3 Kristin School
105.8 Wellington High School GP
100.7 New Plymouth Girls' High School FC
095.4 Auckland Grammar School 2
088.3 New Plymouth Girls' High School BZ
080.6 Hutt Valley High School
079.2 St Patrick's College
Scores in the final:
40.5 Auckland Grammar School 1
40.4 Kristin School
39.3 Wellington High School ICP
The following people were chosen to represent NZ at the 2019 IYNT:
Ryan Bright - Wellington High School
Heeseo Kim - Kristin School
Matthew Griffiths - Auckland Grammar
Ryaan Sidhu – Auckland Gammar
Lydia Acton - Wellington High School
Rhiannon Mackie - HVHS
The team continued working on gathering data and strengthening their theoretical understanding, with the help of their teachers over the ensuing months. A training camp was held in Auckland in July to develop the skills that the team would need in the competition: reporting, opposing and reviewing.
Supported by a TSSTA grant from the Royal Society of New Zealand, the team travelled to Minsk, Belarus, for the tournament starting on August 18th. 21 teams were there including last year's finalists Bulgaria, Georgia and Switzerland. Our team stayed unbeaten throughout each round with every member of the team making a strong contribution. Tournament rules require that no member of the team may report, oppose or review more than once before the final. In the final Ryan Bright reported his solution to problem 7, Burning Glass: Propose and test various methods to start a fire with a magnifying glass." Heeseo Kim proved to be an excellent opposer. In the final she opposed the Swiss solution to problem 10, Elastic bones: "Chicken bones kept in acidic conditions for a few days become elastic. Perform such an experiment in controlled conditions and investigate what components of bones are responsible for their mechanical properties." Matthew Griffiths reviewed the report of Croatia on problem 11, Yeast "Investigate the rate of the multiplication of yeast at different temperatures."
It was tense throughout the final, with scores very close, but in the end we WON!
More photos can be seen in our gallery. This has been a massively rewarding and educational experience for all of the students (and teachers) involved, whether they made the IYNT team or not.
Read about us in this article from the Education Gazette 8th November 2019.