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Katherine G. Johnson S.T.E.M Institute

8th Grade Science Fair

By Katherine G. Johnson S.T.E.M Institute

Dear 8th Grade Parents/Guardians,


We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health as we continue to face the uncertainty in our community.
Below is important information concerning your student(s) 2021 Science Fair Project. Please read this letter in its entirety so that we can have safe transport for student materials and projects.
The purpose of our Science Fair this year is to foster Family Engagement. Families gain an opportunity to spend time together on a Science Fair Project that will promote a positive academic environment. Please approach this as time to spend on your student’s academic progression, deeper understanding, and application of what has been taught this year.
This pandemic situation has challenged us to look at various means to deliver meaningful academic instruction to our students and keep them engaged throughout the school year. This will be evident as we ask students and parents/guardians to work together on a cumulative and creative Science Fair Project. Students will have the choice of 2 options:
1. Create a Tri – Fold Presentation Board that highlights a topic they learned this year. Students will take a topic they are interested in or learned the most about to create an informational board to explain to younger students what they will be learning about in 8th grade.
2. Create a Prototype of a device that will help the Environment. Students will record a 2 minute video displaying the device, discussing its components, explaining how this will help the environment, and what science based research they have conducted that has led them to the conclusion that this will be helpful.
***Rubrics for these projects are attached. Please review these as the guide for your project completion***
The Science Fair Tri Fold/ Presentation Video must be completed by Friday, April 2nd.
Please mark your calendar identifying these vital dates during the remainder of this semester:
February 26th – Choose either Option 1 or 2
March 1st, 2nd, and 3rd – Students take their Tri – Fold Board home after testing (Option 1).
March 12th – Content developed and rough drafts created at home
Option 1: Rough drafts completed: Ex: state standard, title, topic, Why is this important, Why is this interesting? What would we need to know before learning about this topic? What is the most important item to know about this topic?
Option 2: Prototype #1 should be completed with a summary of how it helps the Earth
March 19th – Plan arrangement of information on board or in video
Option 1: Sketch arrangement of information on scrap sheet of paper. Will that information fit? Did I include all of the components listed above?
Option 2: Practice Videotaping. If this goes well keep the video. If not, erase and then film again with adjustments made.
March 26th – Create Tri-Fold OR Create the video. Look over your work!
Option 1: Create board by arranging, placing, decorating, coloring, and writing on Tri-Fold Board
Option 2: Record the entire video. Look at recording to ensure it satisfies requirements.
March 29th – Boards need to be dropped off this week at the Front office. Drop the boards off after 10 am but before 2 pm. Include student’s name and homeroom teacher on back of board
April 2nd – Boards Due by 2 pm. Videos submitted using Flip Grid by 2pm. Label with Name and Homeroom Teacher so that we can track these easily.
This assignment will be taken for a Grade
Thank you for continued support.
Chris Stinson
STEM Director

S.S. Katherine Johnson Cygnus Spacecraft

By Katherine G. Johnson S.T.E.M Institute
All resources, participation, and registration are FREE.
Register to let NASA know that you’re virtually participating!

About this Event

Registration will provide communications about launch schedule changes, information about highlighted launch-related activities, and access to curated launch resources.

Northrop Grumman’s 15th commercial resupply services mission is scheduled to deliver cargo to the International Space Station in the S.S. Katherine Johnson Cygnus spacecraft. Launch is from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport’s Pad-0A at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island.

While there is no physical ticket for online participation nor access to in-person launch activities, register to participate from your spot in the universe!

Register Now

The use of the NASA logo or identifiers without permission of the Office of Communications is prohibited by federal statute and regulations, the violation of which may include fines, imprisonment, or both.

Enhancing STEM education with hands on learning opportunities

By Katherine G. Johnson S.T.E.M InstituteNo Comments

Thank you to GO Grant for helping us build our new Greenhouse.  Students of all ages will be able to use this on-site greenhouse to enhance STEM by taking a short walk and enjoy hands-on experiences.  From the life cycle and parts of a plant to biology, students from all groups can engage with our new greenhouse. Students in elementary school can see firsthand how weather affects growing conditions. Tending to plants teaches them responsibility, and they start to experience at an early age the reward of seeing their hard work blossom.

Middle schoolers may start branching out from the gardening and growing basics, conducting experiments related to temperature controls, fertilizers or even taking note of which plants may thrive in certain conditions or in their local climate.  Students get an up-close look at ecosystems and their components.  In high school, students may develop an interest in horticultural programs and continue to build on these lessons, possibly even developing entrepreneurial skills.

Our 2nd Annual STEM Writing Contest

By Katherine G. Johnson S.T.E.M InstituteNo Comments

Contest Dates: Jan. 19, 2021-March 2, 2021

Note: Register for our live webinar on Jan. 14 on teaching informational writing with a STEM theme.

Why do hummingbirds nap? How do coronavirus vaccines work? Can two robotic spacecraft land on the moon at once? How do plant roots compete for water? Do foods like kiwis and cherries affect our sleep patterns?

If you click on any of these articles, you’ll see that they are written for a general reader. Special technical or scientific knowledge is not required, and each is designed to get our attention and keep it — by giving us “news we can use” in our own lives, or by exploring something fascinating in a way that makes it easy to understand and shows us why it matters.

That’s what Times journalists do every day across our ScienceHealth and Technology sections.

For this contest, The Learning Network invites you to bring that same spirit of inquiry and discovery to finding a STEM-related question, concept or issue you’re interested in, and, in 500 words or fewer, explaining it to a general audience in a way that not only helps us understand, but also engages us and makes us see why it’s important.

So what questions do you have about how the world works? What science, technology, engineering, math or health questions might be inspired by your own life or experiences? What innovations, processes or problems in any of these areas puzzle or intrigue you? What concepts in STEM — whether from biology, physics, psychology, computer science, algebra or calculus — have you learned about, in or out of school, that might be useful or fun to explain to others?

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