It’s time to start thinking about Science Fair at Shaker Road School. Our science fairs do not resemble the sea of trifold boards, stoically tended by students, that you may recall from your childhood. Inquiry is the focus for our students, as they question, experiment, create, and share their work. Their projects will provide solutions to real-world problems. The science fair on March 28, 2018 will be the proverbial “tip of the iceberg.” A tremendous amount of work likes beneath the surface.
Just before Holiday Break, students chose a field of engineering—this year’s science fair focus—and will return in January to begin their work. Enrichment block on Wednesday mornings will serve as weekly project periods for students to collaborate as 6th-8th graders. This model allows students to use the skills that they’ve been developing in the classroom, including project management, critical thinking, research, scientific method, and communication.
Following a 21st Century learning model, community members will play a large part in this year’s science fair. Students will turn to local engineers, builders, architects, conservation organizations, and even artists to learn about their work and give advice on projects to showcase at the science fair. A key aspect of preparing today’s students for the future is engagement in professional communities. As one of the school’s science teachers and coordinator for our FIRST LEGO League program, an inquiry based science fair with an engineering focus just makes sense to me. Students who participate in FLL will be familiar with the design and challenge of this year’s science fair. “Lego League” veterans will be key players in their engineering groups, leading their peers though an engaging and authentic learning process. We hope to see you all at the science fair. Bring your questions!