Science Fun


Posted On: 11 Oct

Seawell Elementary is our Spotlight School of the Week

Seawell Elementary is our Spotlight School of the Week


GRADE: 5th Grade
PROGRAM: Newton’s Lab
Scientist: Christine

Today, I traveled to Seawell Elementary in Chapel Hill. The last time I taught at this school was in September 2016 and I taught Newton’s Lab to fifth grade. This year it’s October, and guess what? It’s Newton Lab with fifth grade once again, which is great because I love this program, and I love fifth graders! (Fun Fact: Scientist Christine used to be a fifth grade teacher!) Not only did I get to teach a great program, I got a chance to teach it to someone else today.

Someone else? That’s right. It’s not always the case, but today I trained our newest scientist, Scientist Brooke. She joined me in the fifth grade classrooms of Mrs. Sidenstricker, Higginbotham, and Halpert. In our last session, Brooke was getting so comfortable with the program, that she demoed how to assemble the Action Reaction Car all on her own. So junior scientists, not only kids learn, but adults learn to. I was very proud of our newest addition to the team because she took new steps forward in becoming a great Science Fun for Everyone! Educator. The proof was in the pudding because everyone in the class made some pretty terrific cars.

Not only did I get to see Brooke that day, but I also got to see Scientist Sarah because she was teaching the classes of Becton and Davidson. This can sometimes cause a problem because the end of the program we go outside to shoot water rockets to demonstrate Newton’s Three Laws. The problem lies in the fact that there will be two classes trying to shoot off rockets at the same time. This only proved to be a problem with the first class. The fifth graders and I walked outside, bike pump in tow, and to our surprise Scientist Sarah had already beaten us to the prime real estate outside, the blacktop basketball court. In luck, P.E. was just wrapping up on their private blacktop and allowed us to use the space so that we could use air pressure to send these water rockets into the atmosphere. 3…2…1…Blast Off!

Being a scientist on the road can get lonely sometimes, but having great coworkers and great fifth graders to work with makes all the difference. Looking forward to when we can launch again!

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Posted On: 6 Oct

The Expedition School is our Spotlight School of the Week

The Expedition School is our Spotlight School of the Week


GRADE: 2nd Grade
PROGRAM: Weather Wise
Scientist: Cameron

The Expedition School. Doesn’t that just sound cool? I was intrigued when I saw this name on my schedule. I know about charter schools, magnet schools, public schools, private schools, even Montessori schools—but what’s an Expedition school? With the sun rising at my back, I set out to find the answer.

I snaked my way down the roads of Hillsborough, just off I-85, looking for my landmark: the Eno River. (Scientist Cameron Fun Fact: the Eno River stole my wedding ring and still hasn’t given it back! Not cool.) Just after crossing my nemesis, the school was in sight, built into what looked like an old factory or mill of some sort. I heard dozens of frogs chirping in the river as I unloaded my materials.

I was there to teach 2nd Grade about Meteorology—and they were ready for it. I tell you what, I’ve never had a more attentive or knowledgeable group of 2nd graders. Really! Not only had they covered some of their weather unit before I came, but they were into it. When I arrived, the students eagerly explained how, being so close to the river, their school was under a flood watch during Hurricane Florence.

During the programs, they gave detailed answers to questions about the water cycle, the formation of clouds, the occurrence of lightning, and much more. One girl’s answer in particular stood out to me. I asked, “Does anyone know why thunder happens after lightning?” First she said, “Well, light travels a lot faster than sound, so it gets to your ears faster.” I would have been content with that answer, but she continued, saying, “And thunder happens when the lightning makes the air around it get really, really hot.” Wow! She knows her stuff! I spent the whole day fielding answers like this.
This was apparently our first trip to the Expedition School, but I’d love to journey back there some time soon. Until next time, have a scientific day!

– Scientist Cameron

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Posted On: 27 Sep

The Academy of Moore County is our Spotlight School of the Week

The Academy of Moore County is our Spotlight School of the Week


GRADE: Kindergarten
PROGRAM: Animal Detectives
Scientist: Yani

The school I chose to spotlight is the Academy of Moore County in Aberdeen, NC. I went to this school to teach three sessions of Animal Detectives, one of my personal favorite programs. As usual, the students at the school were all super excited and respectful. They remained engaged and friendly to all of the animals I brought with me. Even the teachers participated in our imaginary zoo adventure. From feeding our “birds” to learning about reptiles and insects, and last but not least, ending on mammals; the students enjoyed themselves. Everyone in the classrooms became mini Zoologist and some even wanted to keep going. There is no greater feeling than when you are asked not to leave because everyone is having so much fun while learning.

At the conclusion of the day, on my way back to the office to sign out, I was approach by different staff members complementing on the program. A lot of people, even people who did not see the program had nice things to say. Word had traveled fast that day. So fast that the office staff asked for a list of the different programs and more information. Luckily, I always carry around extra program guides. They were so impressed by the kindergarten program that they were thinking about bringing us out again for other grade levels. I left the school feeling accomplished. I not only had the honor of educating such great classes, I also got to meet such a positive and supportive school staff. It was truly amazing.

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