Why are triangular structures part of bridges? Why have ancient arches and domes withstood the test of time? Can solar power be used to remove salt from water? What is the best microwave popcorn?
Those questions and many more were answered by the bright students at the St. Anselm Catholic Academy – SACA STEM (Science, Tech, Engineering, and Math) Fair, which was held in Meletia Hall on March 27th. Parents, children, and guests gathered around the exhibits to listen as the young researchers discussed their findings. Some exhibits even offered an opportunity for a hands-on learning experience as well. The STEM Fair also provided a wonderful opportunity for younger students to interact with and learn from their older counterparts.
Each of the classes in grades PreK-3 through Third provided a class research project which was hosted by student representatives while upper grade students presented their individual or group projects. Topics included absorption, using safer chemicals to detect the presence of blood, how to detect Vitamin B-2 in tonic water and spinach, discovering which type of paper airplane flies the farthest (which included building a launcher for consistency) and determining the best microwave popcorn. The students explained their research question, methodology, discussed or demonstrated their work and then presented their findings along with implications for everyday life.
An event like this is a tremendous amount of work and there are many to thank: the families for supplying the material to complete the projects, the SACA teachers for fostering the skills necessary to complete the research, Board Members Bob Fugowski and Lynne Savage, and Principal Flanagan for their support and encouragement, the SACA STEM Committee (Mrs. Downey, Mrs. Torre, and Ms. Capotorto) for their work in the selection process, Mrs. Deem (the STEM Coordinator) and finally the students, and their supportive parents, whose hard work and fascinating research projects gave us much to think about. Congratulations and thanks to you all. We can’t wait for next year!
All the best,
The St. Anselm Publicity Committee