February 12, 2014 | Volume 101 / Number 7

Whiz Kids Test Their Curiosity At Science Fair

While some students shook their heads in distaste for another project, others jumped at the chance to play with their curiosity. The 19th Glasgow Kiwanis Science Fair took place this last week at the East Side School.

Bonnie Davidson / The Courier
Fifth grader Bailee Baxter explains her science fair experiment and shows how fabrics, such as cotton, absorbed water more quickly than others, including wool.

While projects weren't required, students did get a chance for extra credit and had the chance to advance to the regional science fair in Havre. Projects were displayed for judges on Saturday, Feb. 8 and Monday, Feb. 10. The public was invited to look on Monday and shortly after the awards were handed out.

Bailee Baxter, a fifth grader, may not have made it to the top ranks in the science fair but she did answer a question that had been on her mind. She wanted to know why some materials absorbed liquids and others didn't. She used a red dye to try and visibly see what absorbed the best. She said that the project was her choice and was surprised at how polyester soaked up liquids.

"I figured out what to wear in the rain; wool doesn't get wet," Bailee said.

She explained that her father helped her with the project when it came to taking pictures and using the stopwatch, which seemed a little confusing to her. She wasn't sure if she would get a grade, but she was thinking about trying to enter the science fair again next year, maybe a different project.

Not all students entered the science fair alone. They could partner with someone to take on a hypothesis and answer questions using the scientific method. Students weren't allowed to do any demonstrations. A total of 54 students presented 31 projects from fourth to seventh grade.

A seventh grade duo that was interested in how fatigue might affect their skills during basketball season decided to enter the fair. Ben Miller and Merlin McKean enjoy playing ball and McKean said that he enjoys science. The pair had their basketball team help them figure out what happens to free throws before and after practice.

Teammates shot 20 consecutive free throws and they were counted for accuracy. After practice they ran extra laps across the gym and shot another 20 consecutive free throws. Miller participated with the team while McKean recorded. They were surprised by what they found. They found that fatigue had a fairly big impact on their shooting accuracy.

"It might change how I play; I might concentrate more at the end of a game," Miller said.

Miller and McKean did make it into the top three in their grade, placing third. They were happy to be heading to the regional competition in March.

First and second place winners were invited to present their projects to the Kiwanis Club. First place winners received $50 in Glasgow chamber Big Bucks, and second place received $25. Those who did not place will also have a chance to be selected by the school to go on and compete at the regional level. The judge comment sheets can be used to improve projects while going onto higher levels.

Fourth grade first place went to Kate Parks and Kambria Ross. Second went to Nora Neumiller and Ted Tryan. Third went to Bergen Miller.

Fifth grade first place went to Cheyne Iman and Katie Belt. Second place went to Hanna Toavs, and third went to Mercedes Taylor and Naomi Siverly.

Sixth grade first place went to Nicole Lippert and Destiny Bear-Garza. Second place went to Mariah Cathey, and third went to Kaylee Ross and Keely Fossum.

Seventh grade first place went to Oden Hallock and Garrett Lloyd, followed by Natosha Sand in second place, and Ben Miller and Merlin McKean in third.

Dr. Charles Wilson was the fair coordinator this year, assisted by Sam Fallang of CMHS. Judges were from the Kiwanis Club, National Weather Service, Fish Wildlife and Parks, and local businesses: Ryan Lott, Cindy Lott, Heather Harris, Tom Flowers, Jeff Remus, Landon Holte, Bill Martin, Sharon Martin, Ben Wilson, Sam Fallang, Craig Overby, Paul Wetz, Arnold Hill and Mona Amundson.

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