Around 131 research studies were showcased in a two-day research caravan by the Puerto Princesa City National Science High School (PPCNSHS) to promote the culture of research and explore the possibility of adoption by the community.

School principal Eleanor Alfaro said on Wednesday that nurturing the culture of research among students is important for a science high school. It is also an opportunity to showcase students’ innovation to the public, which can benefit communities.

“We want them to really upgrade their skills at doing research. I have noticed there are lots of research projects made by our students that really need to be ventured or published. Not only in our locality but also nationally and internationally, it was just hindered by the pandemic,” she said.

In the fifth year of the school’s research caravan, the decision was made to present the research to the public, allowing other schools to benchmark as well.

Approximately 405 researchers from grades 9 to 12 participated in the event, showcasing their studies and outputs in the fields of physical science, life science, robotics, and mathematical and computational sciences.

Despite experiencing the height of the pandemic, the school persevered in conducting its annual activity through an online platform. The school’s research coordinator pioneered the initiative, which received support from science and research teachers.

“Where are we going to put these researches if we won’t publish, if we won’t let the public see it? We did not confine them to the four corners of the classroom. We decided to bring it out, especially in Robinsons Palawan,” she said.

Some of the showcased research included studies on trash grinding machines for household waste, bioplastics made from various types of sweet potato starch, the use of fermented extract of pandan leaves as probiotics for broiler chicken growth, and the utilization of shredded facemasks as fiber.

Heather Marrieanne Aowes, one of the researchers, stated that their group was motivated to develop a product after witnessing the significant amount of trash ending up on the shore instead of being properly disposed of in landfills.

“One time nag-clean kami sa Abanico, near the seashore, we recognized the amount of trash na napupunta sa shore and how problematic it is. Daming batang naglalaro sa tabi ng shore and may possibility na magkaroon sila ng sakit, so we come up with the prediction that landfills are not enough for the trash,” she said.

Shredding the waste through their machine will aid in reducing the amount of trash and produce an alternative source of organic fertilizer.

Furthermore, other researchers were motivated by the rising inflation rate to devise more cost-effective methods for raising chickens, such as utilizing pandan leaves.

“We are looking for better and cheaper vitamins because ang pandan ay pwede naman natin itanim on our backyards since fermentation ay pwede naman siya gawin,” researcher Leoniel Lodor said.

Other researchers also studied the effects of social media addiction on social skills, self-esteem of students in rural and urban areas, and political involvement of students.