Bonny Slope’s Scientists & Engineers had their moment in the spotlight at the 8th annual Science Fair last month. 105 individual students experimented, tinkered, and compiled their results on tri-fold boards in anticipation of the event. Their hard work culminated in an educational and enlightening evening for students and parents alike.
“Science Fair is special because it's an opportunity for the kids to get exposed to the same scientific/engineering process and principles that adults in STEM fields use, within the confines of their own unique interests and capabilities. Do you like basketball? A first grader might see how many baskets they can make in a certain time while a fifth grader might study the trajectory of the ball thrown by different players. It's adaptable to each student,” shares Science Fair co-lead, Lianne Yarvis, who worked with Ekta Singh to bring about this family-fun event.
This year’s fair brought some changes. Engineering Design projects were introduced, fully aligning BSE’s event with the District’s K-8 Science Expo. A huge thank you is due to Findley PTO's Angie Mitlehner for graciously assisting BSE over this hurdle. This year’s Fair was also combined with PYP Inquiry night, meaning a later evening, but organizers still managed to get Kindergarteners finished up by 6:45PM. Phew!
The participating students presented their projects to over 30 parent volunteers. Also deserving of kudos are a dozen students from Cedar Park Summa and Sunset High’s Science Club who completed over 100 individual student reviews, helping ease the burden on parents. “It is exciting because I like to hear what the reviewer thinks about my science project,” shared third-grader, Reese Vanderploeg.
To further inspire our hard-working students, several science vendors and organizations were on hand. Grad Students from PSU’s Chemistry and Physics departments turned out in the form of the Science Outreach Society to show the kids how to make awesome sounds using everyday objects.
The Oregon Chapter of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation talked about our local elk population and had some hands-on displays, including recently shed antlers that the kids could touch.
WSU’s Creative Digital Media Center’s students drove a heckuva long way to share their Life Renewed exhibit. The virtual/augmented reality display gave the kids an opportunity to experience how the wildlife around Mt. St. Helens evolved after its devastating eruption, using Engineering and Computer Science to show students Biology & Life Science.
Finally, the kids ate up 3D printer enthusiast Shashi Jain at last year’s fair. Jain wanted to make this year’s presentation even more educational, so he brought along some fellow enthusiasts. Organizers tripled their floor space, and students were treated to 3D printed minecraft pickaxes AND an understanding of the underlying technology. A big shout out to Jain, Rose Moore, and Ben Grove, for turning out and devoting their evening to our young scientists.
Other unsung heroes include Ron Smith, for his herculean volunteer contribution before, during, and after the Fair, as well as Jenny Deeb’s significant contribution in logistical planning.
Science Fair is organized and funded via the Science Fair line item and your excellent BSCO donation.