Prepping for the WOW! at Carter

Tuesday, April 28th, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Kiara Byrd

April 28 - 2Well, it’s about that time to get down to business at Carter School of Excellence.  The girls are going to go over their experiments in their respective teams and start preparing for the WOW! event. We will be going over our roles in each group and researching about the topic at hand.

We have 3 different groups which are lip balm, elephant toothpaste, and pop rocks. The girls would really be getting a better understanding of the purpose of the experiment and the science behind it all. The girls in the lip balm group researched on the computer on the history of lip balm and how each material plays an important role in making the perfect lip balm.
Our second group was the elephant toothpaste and Jamelya did a great job in performing the experiment and explaining the science behind it all in her own words. “The reason that it’s foam is because there’s dish soap inside and that’s where the bubbles come from. The yeast also helps with the foam because yeast helps things rise.” I helped her with adding on that that the yeast would be considered a catalyst and the reaction also creates an exothermic reaction, by giving off heat.
The final group is pop rocks and the girls had the chance to understand how carbon dioxide can be found anywhere. The science behind this experiment is that the carbon dioxide is released from the candy and that is what blows up the balloon. The girls really enjoyed this experiment. Since they love candy, it even got the attention of the other girls in the other groups. I was very proud of the girls today and I feel we are really going to be ready for the WOW.

Staying Alive!

Tuesday, April 28th, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Nedum Aniemeka
  This week at Sisters4Science, the girls April 28 - 1of Ariel Community Academy were pleased to participate in another activity with Dr. Florence Mussat! The girls absolutely loved having her visit and teach them how to sew stitches last week so they were excited to see her again. For this session, Dr. Mussat taught the girls about a very useful skill – CPR – Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation. Most of the girls said that they had already begun babysitting kids for friends and family, so it was super important for them to know the basics of CPR so they could know what to do in case of an emergency.
To start off her lesson, Dr. Mussat showed the girls a few videos so they could see examples of what a real-life emergency would look like if someone were choking or unconscious. When asked what the first thing they should do when they see someone in trouble, Brianna said that they should call for help. That’s right Brianna! Whenever anyone thinks they or someone they’re with is in danger, the first thing they need to do is call 9-1-1 to ensure the proper April 28 - 4authorities are alerted to the situation. However, after that CPR may be necessary, and this is what Dr. Mussat covered in her demonstration. Because we didn’t have any actual dummies to practice on, the girls had to use our junior Kids4Science – Brooklyn and Jadyn. Don’t worry, no six year olds were harmed in the making of this demonstration! All of the girls got to pair off in twos and simulate an emergency situation in which they were babysitters. Dr. Mussat told the girls that “Staying Alive” had the perfect beat to do chest compressions to, and because of that she asked each pair to have someone sing the song while they did CPR! Antimia had a blast out of that and even got everyone else singing aApril 28 - 2long with her.
At the end of the demonstration, the girls had a dance break for their physical activity, and what better song to use than “Staying Alive”! Overall, it was a successful week of Sisters4Science at Ariel!

Radio, Are You There? Over!

Friday, April 24th, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator Eugenia Ruiz
April 24 - 2 April 24 - 4Greetings from the wonderful Sisters4Science girls at Funston Elementary! It’s a brand new week, which means a brand new session day. The weather is finally getting nicer and the sun keeps peeking out. For today’s plan, we have Dr. Michelle Harris, from Northwestern University, as our scientist of the day. She has a PhD in Chemistry and she was always interested in science growing up. The last time that Dr. Harris came to visit, she brought solar panels for the girls to see how much energy power from light can actually turn on a mini lightbulb. For this session, she brought along something greater: radios!
To start the session off, we had a small physical ice breakers. The girls all gathered in a circle. We called April 24 - 7the ice breaker ‘Copy Cat’ but it basically consists of having one student start off by making a movement. Then, the next student was to copy the movement and create their own. The third student would copy the previous two movements and create their own and so on and so forth. The girls were having so much fun that I, along with Dr. Harris, decided to join the fun. Julie Astudillo decided to challenge herself and be the last student to do all of the movements. I must say that sure was a fun ice breaker.
To begin the activity, Dr. Harris had a worksheet for the girls. In the worksheet, they recapped the last session they had together with the solar panels. Then it began with explaining how to BUILD the radios and how to make them work. The girls separated
into four groups. They each had the supplies to create their own radio. Lizbeth was amazed at how, with what seem like simple supplies, were able to create a radio. You can definitely tell when all the groups figured out how to get the radios working becauseApril 24 - 3 all the music would be going around the room. Dr. Harris went around to each group to make sure they understood as to what was happening with he radios. Julie Concepcion was beyond intrigued asking what would happen if a wire was changed or an antennae.
It was so good to see the girls enjoy building a radio that they thought would not work. They learned that with hard work and concentration, they can accomplish anything. Until next time!

Watch out! Geysers of Diet Coke at Woodson!

Thursday, April 23rd, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator Kiara Byrd

April 23 - 2 It’s the day after Earth Day and the Woodson girls were going to be learn about one earths natural wonders. I showed them a video clip to explain what a geyser is and how it works. Most importantly what were the three key things to have a geyser eruption. Jailon said water was one, Semajah said magma as the second part in making things hot, and Rachel said the igneous rock as the final piece to the puzzle.

To their surprise, the girls were going to make their own geysers today, using diet coke and mentos. How will they be able to do that without the three key parts?? I’m glad you asked.
I explained to the girls that with the materials we have we do have similar key parts. The first thing is the water, which is a liquid and our liquid is the diet coke. Our second part is the magma heat and how this experiment works is that, with a mentos capsule it has tiny holes around it. When the capsule comes in contact with the diet coke it causes tiny bubbles of CO2 to form off the capsule, pushing our liquid up like the magma heat boiling the water. And last but not least the igneous rock that helps with the water movement, our mentos capsule is our igneous rock.
I had 4 bottles so the girls were put into 4 groups. Because this experiment can get messyApril 23 - 3 we had the chance to go outside and enjoy the beautiful weather for a little bit. But not without our protective gear, in order to not mess up our clothes from the eruptions. The girls also made tubes out of construction paper to be able to distribute all the mentos into their bottles without an immediate blast of coke in their faces lol.
When we made it outside the girls were very excited. “Can we start now Miss Kiara?” Tahnya  asked. “Yea I want to see what’s going to happen.” Said Alana. I asked the girls to get in their separate groups and keep a safe distance between them so they do not get splashed by the other bottles. I first explained they had to duct tape the construction paper tube to the bottles and stick a toothpick at the bottom as a stopper, so all the mentos can be put in. Each group had their turn to display their geyser. One group in particular wanted the full experience, my 5th graders. Even with the protective wear, the girls stood directly next to their geyser and enjoyed every second of getting messy from the eruption. They screamed and laughed at the same time. I admired their bravery.
April 23 - 4After our geyser eruptions, we headed back inside to get cleaned up. With a few minutes left I wanted to get started on our science presentation ideas. The girls named off a few even including our geyser experiment we just did. Tahnya and Arianna even showed me on how to make a marble design with nail polish. After so many, we barrows it down to three projects and I can’t wait for them to show me their skills on creating their own things to take home.

Secret Messages at Carter!

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Kiara Byrd

April 21 - 2 It’s almost Earth Day!!!! To show appreciation, we had a guest today to show us how to be resourceful in sending messages to people. Our guest facilitator Alondra, one of our STEM Facilitators with Project Exploration, had a great activity on Invisible Ink. The concept was April 21 - 8to write messages to each other using lemon juice. The girls were split up in pairs and to later exchange what they wrote on the paper. Alondra was very helpful in demonstrating each step to the girls and later allowing them to do it themselves.

The first step was to get the lemon juice. After Alondra and I cut lemons for the girls, they squeezed the juice out into their own cup. After that, had to set up their own candle. With Alondra’s help, the girls used the wax from the candle to stick the candle straight up on the desks. Since the candles are for the end of the experiment, it was time to get writing!! The girls had their own toothpicks as their “pens” to put the “ink” on the paper. After exchanging letters, they revealed the messages by slowly and carefully heating the paper without burning it with the lit candles. April 21 - 3Danaisha wrote “Hey with a smile” to Armani, Skye wrote a nice compliment to Darnasha, and Gentrice wrote her favorite saying to Ajah. It took some time to get the hang of it but I saw the girls helping each other out.  They all expressed that they need to be very careful and it’s not okay to play with fire. The girls practiced fire safety techniques in order for things not to get bad and thanked Alondra for coming in and showing them a new way in writing letters. HAPPY April 21 - 9EARTH DAY!!!

Stitch Fix!

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator, Nedum Aniemeka

April 21 - 4 This week at Ariel the girls of Sisters4Science got a chance to be surgeons! Dr. Florence Mussat, a plastic and reconstructive surgeon, came to Ariel and brought her surgical tools with her. To start the lesson, Dr. Mussat gave the girls a crash course on all things in medicine, asking the girls about a variety of health issues that doctors encounter on a daily basis. It looks like the girls are all already experts, because they knew the answers to all of the questions Dr. Mussat asked! Anise even knew all of the signs of someone having a stroke, which is very impressive.

To get to know the girls, Dr. Mussat went around the room and asked everyone what they wanted to be when April 21 - 5they were older. The girls all had different professions in mind! Brianna said she wanted to be a doctor while Shanyia said she wanted to be a teacher and Martinisha said she wanted to be a veterinarian. We’ve got some ambitious girls on our hands!

After her brief introduction, it was time to get down to stitching! Using some surgical scissors, needles, and of course scrubs, the girls got to experience what it would be like to give someone stitches. Of course they needed someone to operate on, and what better patient to have than a banana! The bananas they used were emergency patients, so the girls had to try to be quick to save them from loosing too much blood (strawberry sauce). The girls loved learning how to make a stitch and though they had some trouble at first soon enough they were all sewing up their banana peels like pros. Nyssa even said she April 21 - 3thought she could walk into a surgery right then if she had to. I think she’ll need a few more years or school before she can do that, but we appreciate her confidence!

All in all, the girls loved Dr. Mussat’s demonstration and are definitely excited to have her back next week!

Another Day, Another Banana to Save!

Friday, April 17th, 2015 – written by STEM Facilitator Eugenia Ruiz
April 17 - 1 Greetings from the girls at the Sisters4Science program at Funston Elementary! On this beautiful, sunny Friday the girls were ready to seize the day! For today’s session, Dr. Mussat was going to be our special scientist. We all remember Dr. Mussat. She completed her medical degree in France, where she was born. She has her own practice now. To start the program off a little differently, I decided to take the girls outside to get a breath of fresh air. For the ice breakers, I had the girls play Simon Says. One by one, every girl had the chance to be Simon. It was great seeing all the different things that the girls would have to do and how they were tricked into doing something without having to say “Simon says…” Julie LOVES cats and for almost her entire turn, she had the girls doing cat noises and such. It was great to see the girls outside and be active.
When coming back into the building, the computer lab was set up for the mini presentation that Dr. April 17 - 2Mussat had prepared. She showed a small, yet funny, clip about CPR. In the video, they mentioned to pump the unconcious person’s chest to the rhythm of Staying Alive. Victoria asked: “Why should we keep the same rhythm?” Dr. Mussat then explained that if the person doing the pumps on the chest were to pump without a steady rhythm, they could hurt them. It April 17 - 5was a silly yet educational video, and really caught the girls attention!
Downstairs in the classroom, Dr. Mussat set up the ten bananas for the girls to suture. In this session, the girls were having a competition as to who has the best looking sutured banana. The girls were absolutely ecstatic about the challenge! As the girls began suturing, you can see the concentration happening in their faces. It was good to see the girls having fun and not being too loud. Julie A. and Emely made such great April 17 - 9sutured bananas, that they began suturing a second one. Once it was time to present the bananas, Dr. Mussat checked to see who’s banana was sutured the best. Turns out, Julie’s banana was the best one out there! It was such a wonderful experience having Dr. Mussat come and introduce the girls to surgery and more specificly, letting them get more hands on experience. Until next time!