Is the science fair really that bad?
I’ve seen this pic shared a few times today, originally from someone named Susan Messina on Facebook. Susan and family clearly had a bad experience with the science fair and made a little joke out of it, but it got me thinking: Is it really that bad these days?
I know classroom schedules are more crowded than ever before, with less space for the free work and experiment time that it takes to really do a science fair project well, and most importantly, to enjoy it.
The experience of doing a science fair project can be an amazing early scientific experience, but it’s been a long time since I’ve been science-fair-aged, and I want to know:
Does your school or district still have a science fair? Is it required? Is it competition-focused? Is classroom time set aside to work on projects? Is it valuable? Is it fun? Should it be improved? How?
The promise of single-sex education is a lofty one: Girls who are empowered and unafraid to speak up. Boys who are focused and enthusiastic about learning. Young women entering the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields in larger numbers. Fewer instances of bullying. Academic excellence. Many students of single-sex education sing its praises, crediting their education with building confidence and creating safe spaces for them to learn and question. Professional proponents claim gender-segregated education caters to children’s natural learning styles, keeping them engaged and producing well-rounded adults. But according to a new study(PDF), single-sex education offers no benefits when it comes to academic interest or achievement. So is there still any reason to keep kids segregated by gender?
(Photo: Bob Wojcieszak/Daily Mail/AP)
By simply limiting a light source to the size of a pinhole we can begin to understand how both the camera and the human eye work to record light. Experimentations done using camera obscura led to many great discoveries, not the least of which was the invention of photography. Building a camera obscura is as simple as cutting a hole in a box, and can be modified easily to make a pinhole camera that captures photos. Many photographers still use a pinhole lens to give their photos a dreamy look.
Greek mathematicians used camera obscura to determine that light travels in a straight line, helping us to understand the relationship between perspective and angles. More curriculum connectors can be found here.