Most Viewed Stories
Science Fair ‘fun as well as educational'
When it came time to volunteer to put science to the test, the hands of Glenn County students shot up like they were attached to strings.
Mad Science instructors sparked the curiosity and imagination of elementary school students from Elk Creek to Hamilton City on Wednesday, during two science-themed shows designed to amaze and entertain their young minds.
Students floated around on a Mad Science hovercraft, altered sound waves, made bouncy balls fly and learned about the distribution of force at the first assembly of its kind at the Glenn County Science Fair.
"I loved it," said Joseph Dunbar, 10, a fifth grader at Fairview School. "I use to think science was boring, but not anymore. Science can be fun as well as educational."
Mad Science, an international science enrichment program, delivered a unique experience for Glenn County students that was highly entertaining, Glenn County Office of Education officials said.
"We wanted to offer something more to the students than just the Science Fair," said Cinnamin Morton, an Educational Services projects specialist, who found Mad Science on the Internet. "We hope to spark their imagination and inspire them to go into the science field."
The Office of Education, Broadbent & Associates of Chico and Mid-Valley Veterinary Hospital in Orland pitched in to bring Sacramento program to Glenn County elementary school students.
Before leaving the one-hour presentations, students happily gestured the "intergalactic symbol of science," also known as the Vulcan "live long and prosper" salute from Star Trek, and pledged to look at the world with a new sense of awe and find science in their every day lives.
"It's pretty neat to see science as it is in the real world," said Victoria Leeman, 11, of Orland. "It's awesome that science is all around you."
Students were equally excited about the more than 300 science projects on display at the Glenn County Fairgrounds.
Danny Vadez, 10, and Nestor Chavez, 12, of Willows, had an idea going in this week that their display on the natural phenomena of a tsunami would likely be the big winner.
They were right.
"I heard about the tsunami in Japan and was fascinated," said Vadez, proud of the Sweepstakes Award he and Chavez received.
The pair won the Walden Science Fair's top award last week, and each have won first place awards at the county exhibit several times.
To go along with their research, the pair crafted a perfect demonstration in a makeshift ocean of how a tsunami works, complete with a hand carved, hand painted beach and shoreline made of foam.
Until the boys did the research, they had no idea tsunami was the Japanese word for "harbor wave," they said.
Walden Academy had a number of winners at the show, including Kelsey Shippelhoute's fifth grade project that explored the effect of peanut-fed chickens on egg production, Wesley Otterson's project on how to make a circuit and Melissa Medina's experiments with nourishing plants with liquids other than water.
Student projects also included a number of scientific experiments or demonstrations on the topics of animals, the human condition and natural phenomena.
Oak Tree Christian School and Capay Elementary, in addition to Walden Academy did well in racking up the sponsor awards.
Veronica Eggink, a fourth grader at Oak Tree, received a nod for her clean water project and Adrienne Boone, a fifth grader at Capay, was recognized for a well-researched project on the human digestive system.
Baily Maousek, a seventh grader at C.K. Price, received a sponsor award for testing how nitrates in water affect the growth of plants, Clarissa Wetz, a Lake Elementary seventh graders proved humans are drawn more to attractive composite faces that real faces, and Peyton Dugo, an eighth grader at Willows Intermediate Schools earned honors for her ballistic test.
"I like the one on the eye colors and the one on the bees," said Olivia Stemple, a third grader from Chico.
Stemple was visiting the Science Fair with grandparents, Gerald and Frances Stemple of Orland, and thought it was a great opportunity to get ideas for a science project of her own.
Stemple, however, will have to wait a few years to put her imagination to the test.
"In my school, only fifth and sixth graders get to do science projects," she said.
CONTACT Susan Meeker at 934-6800 or firstname.lastname@example.org.