STEM night enlightens prospective students
10 middle school students watch in amazement as unknown substances bubble and ooze onto the lab table. This is just one of the various activities middle school students experienced at STEM Night and Beyond hosted at John Carroll on Oct. 9.
The students participated in experiments within the fields of chemistry, physics, biology and engineering. One example of an experiment was “Canister rockets.” Students placed an Alka seltzer tablets in a film canister and picked a liquid of their choosing. They shot the liquid into the film canister using a syringe. The carbonation would then cause the canister to shoot across the room. Whoever shot the canister the farthest won.
According to Baker, around 160 fourth to sixth graders attended
Junior Austin Schap volunteered to help students with the “Bridges de Chef Boyardee” experiment.
“First we explained the process of building a bridge out of pasta and one meter of tape,” Schap said. Students could work in groups or individually, and whoever could place the most weights on their bridge without it falling won.
“Some kids even surpassed what the STEM kids did,” Schap said. “It was impressive.”
“I think it went really well. The students were happy and smiling,” Science Department Chair Julie Baker said. “Also our students did a great job, some of the presenters complimented [them].”
Baker chose volunteers whom she felt had some experience within the fields of science and math.
“The main goal is for them [students] to have fun learning about math and science, and I think that goal was accomplished,” Baker said.
Science teacher Susan Kraft also thought it was a great success. “It was good to meet the younger students and give them a taste of JC.” Kraft said. Kraft greeted guests at the door.
“It was great exposure for our school to prospective students,” Math teacher and STEM coordinator Beverly Markel said. “Especially because students who attended were from Harford County private schools.”
Science teacher and STEM coordinator Jorge Piquer was also impressed with the outcome of the events.
“I have gotten emails from parents saying that [STEM night] was great,” Piquer said.
John Carroll will be hosting a STEM day on Nov. 10 for students grades seven to eight. According to Piquer, it will be similar to STEM Night and Beyond except the presentations will be longer and there will be outdoor activities.
Caitlin Wolfarth is a News Editor for The Patriot and jcpatriot.com