Technology comes to science fair
Explaining her project using a hair hygrometer, Dempsey Middle School 7th grader Grace Floring, right, explains to classmate Emily Miklas how she measured the elasticity of hair with varying degrees on hair color on it. Grace concluded that adding color does negatively affect the elasticity of hair.
Science teacher Deb Bogard explained how the science fair projects have evolved with students learning to be more self-directed. Projects now are completed using more technology through Google Docs as students learn 21st century skills.
Completing much of the work, including poster design, through various technology applications, Bogard said at first students were afraid to do things without permission, but she encouraged them to take a risk.
“They’ve got to be willing to give it a go,” she said. “Often they learn more by failing.”
With a process of peer review through reading each others’ papers, students also have an incentive to put forth extra effort.
“It frees them up to think more on the data and spend less time worrying about getting the letters straight on the poster board,” she said. In the past, much of the work was centered on typing the report and preparing the poster. “There was a lot not related to the science. I want the focus to be the science.”