Tuesday, April 14th, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator Kiara Byrd
Today the girls had the chance to take today by storm. Today was the day to practice how to be their own scientists with their own projects. I gave the girls a list of experiments and they made their decisions and came up with 3 different experiments. The experiments were creating your own lip balm, making your own candy, and elephant toothpaste. The girls were put in their separate groups and with the assistance of Ms. Wyland and myself, the girls were in charge of their own products.
Thursday, April 2nd, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Nedum Aniemeka
Let’s be one with nature. It is important for us as people to understand nature and try to understand what happens when things change and how we fix problems that may come about. Today our special guest was Ms. Natalie Mills, a civil engineering for the US Army Corps of Engineers, and she wanted the girls to get dirty today. She wanted the girls to further understand flooding and the efforts that are made to prevent it. She wanted to explain how different flooding can be with different minerals. The process she chose to emphasize was erosion. She showed the different types of flooding that can occur with slopes, which is more capable of minerals to be carried away. The girls were first asked what they knew about flooding and was given pictures of bad flooding so they can see how severe things can get.
Tuesday, March 31st, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Kiara Byrd
Have you ever wondered what your cells looked like? What makes all of us different?? At Carter today, the girls had the chance to meet Dr. Ana Shulla. She studies Microbology at the University of Chicago and started our day with interesting questions. She wanted to know how much the girls already knew about cells. The girls first expressed to Dr. Shulla what they already knew about cells and later learned the differences in the many different cells. “Today we are going to see our own cheek cells and see the bacteria that’s in yogurt.” Said Dr. Schulla “I thought bacteria is bad, so why would they put in yogurt.” Somayyah was a little confused but after we explained there’s good and bad bacteria, she was more curious in learning more.
Thursday, March 26, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Kiara Byrd
The girls had previously learned about floods and now they were going to learn about buildings and more structures. Our guest scientist Christina Sedighi, a civil engineer who works for the US Army Corps of Engineers, really wanted the girls to learn key words to use when it comes to buildings and the materials need to be used. She had the best pre activity for the girls too! The words were tension and compression. First she demonstrated with a piece of string how tension means strong and how compression means weak or loose. By pulling the string from opposite ends, tightened it and made tension. Compression is the opposite and showed by using a marshmallow that when there isn’t any force on the marshmallow, it is loose and easy to pull apart. Now it was the girls turn to be force!! She had the girls stand up and partner up. They were to hold each other’s hands and pull to understand tension and then for them to lean against each other’s backs to understand compression. The girls enjoyed it a lot. After they were being force they had a challenge. Christina had the girls have a competition with each other, in three groups the girls had to build the tallest tower they could in a limited amount of time. The winning group would win a prize. The trick is, they have to build the tower from marshmallows and spaghetti.
Tuesday, March 24th, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Kiara Byrd
Let’s build today!!! I gave the girls the opportunity to really work as a team, and by listening to every step, build their own tornado!! We had 4 bottles so there were 4 different tornadoes ready to be made. The girls started to cut the remaining paper from the 2 liter bottles to make confetti. It really helped the tornadoes looked more colorful. Nakaylah of course was my helper with helping all of the groups with proper materials. She helped with filling the container with water and even thought of a better way to transport the water into the bottles without spilling. The first group was Semayyah, Danaisha, Dekira, and Ajah. They wanted to be the first group to finish so the other groups can follow, lead by example if you will. Danaisha, another helper of mine today, wanted to help the other groups with their tornadoes and helped everyone secure their bottles.