April 26, 2011 > Pioneer Elementary Science Fair
Pioneer Elementary Science Fair
By Suzanne Ortt
Photos By Doris Nikolaidis
One hundred seventy-five students displayed their skills at the Pioneer Elementary School Science Fair in Union City on April 20. Entrants, grades K - 5, presented diverse and innovative projects.
Angela Higgerson, the school's science teacher, teaches science once a week to each grade. Forty-minute sessions incorporate the scientific method into other aspects of science. Basically, the scientific method consists of four steps: observation and description of a phenomenon or group of phenomena, formulation of a hypothesis, using the hypothesis to predict the results, and performance of experimental tests.
Throngs of excited children and parents filled the cafeteria set up with an impressive variety of projects. A first grader tested different solutions to determine which produced the most bubbles. A fifth grader measured wooden bats of several lengths to determine which one would hit baseballs farther. One second grader learned how to turn an ordinary screw into a temporary magnet. Another fascinating project was a third grader's experiment raising tomatoes in different types of light. Other experiments dealt with yeast, creating a burglar alarm, and determining the rates of melting ice.
E'monic Freeman used the scientific method to create a volcano. The third grader experimented with a variety of solutions and learned that a combination of coke and plain Mentos candies makes a strong eruption. Her mother commented that many paper towels were necessary to clean up the messes.
The Health Education and Resource Team (H.E.A.R.T.) added fun and educational elements to the evening. This volunteer group promotes heart health and physical activity through entertaining activities.
Volunteers set up four activities: fruit and veggie wheel, taste testing (yogurt parfaits), ditch the sugary drinks, and the fruit and veggie plate game, (bean bag toss). Educational materials were available.
Pioneer principal, Cheri Benafield and science instructor Higgerson were much in evidence, interacting with students and viewing well-done presentations. Their enthusiasm added to the spirit of the science fair.