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Student uses Art & Engineering to explain nano objects
Posted 12/10/2014 02:55PM

High School Senior Edgar Smit remembers being interested in the sciences since a young Edgar Smit pictured with the catpault he built in the Design Lab.age, filling his time with reading about the subject. Over time, his love for the sciences hasn't changed, but his approach to it has. From a voracious reader of the way things work, Edgar is now an avid doer—applying theory to practice as any good scientist would do. This past summer, leading up to his senior year, Edgar completed an internship at UC Berkeley in the Materials Science and Engineering department working on nanoparticle assemblies using different instruments to study the structure of various polymers.


Meanwhile, Edgar relates his experience in the UC Berkeley lab to his work at International High School. Students in Grade 12 Art are asked to choose a theme for their work. Without surprise, Edgar chose the topic of nano materials and how to make them understandable. He is focusing on atomic force and imaged polymers for his first project. "One of my art projects [this year] involves creating a catapult as a tool to measure different mass by building it using the concept of a mass spectrometer—an instrument I used during my internship that can calculate the mass of a molecule," says Edgar. "This catapult can be used to shoot multiple materials covered in paint to esthetically illustrate the mass of an object based on the distance traveled."


For his Art projects, including this catapult, Edgar uses International High School's new Design Catapult made in design labLab. When asked about it, he notes how project options have expanded with access to all the instruments and tools available in this new space. In his free time, he's also using the Design Lab to create a laser guitar using a 3D printer and plans to use one of the lab's laser cutters to shape the wood of his guitar.


Now in his final year of high school, pursuing the French Bac, this trilingual teen (rumor has it that he also speaks Dutch in addition to French and English) has narrowed down what he wants to pursue in years to come. "I love Engineering and the application of materials," says Edgar. "This is what I will pursue after graduation."


"Research shows that younger children have a superior ability to learn a second language and that bilingual students tend to outperform their monolingual peers."

Admission Information

Visit our admissions section to learn about our bilingual immersion in the lower and middle school. Or visit our high school to learn about the French Bac or IB program.

Global Travel

Many cultural and linguistic trips as well as student exchanges are offered each year. Learn more

Academic Roadmap

The school delivers a rigorous bilingual immersion program from PK3 to grade 8, culminating in either the French Baccalaureate or International Baccalaureate program in its International High School.

The Bilingual Advantage

The bilingual education program of the French American International School provides our students with a springboard for a global perspective. The curriculum is taught in English and French in a way that makes learning exciting and challenging, while meeting the high standards of the French and American educational systems.

French American International School

Main building

150 Oak Street

San Francisco, CA 94102

Ph: 415.558.2000

Early Childhood Center

1155 Page Street

San Francisco, CA 94117

Ph: 415.231.5733

An independent Pre-K through 12th grade co-educational day school in the heart of San Francisco. The school delivers a rigorous bilingual (French/English) immersion program through middle school, culminating in either the French Baccalaureate or International Baccalaureate program in its International High School.

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