This past Friday, May 3rd
, Fulton Science Academy Private School
celebrated their very first STEM day. FSAPS has been regarded in the past as a school with a very strong STEM-based curriculum and currently prides itself on its STEAM framework and philosophies across all grade levels. Prescribing to the idea that mathematics provides the base for their interdisciplinary educational program, teachers and administration collaborate at FSAPS to also instill a deep interest in the various fields of science and technology. Increased incorporation of various art classes has created an engaging and dynamic environment at FSAPS. The activities and events during “STEM Day” clearly demonstrated this environment that has been cultivated by both the faculty and students.
Students in 6th through 8th grade were split into small groups for more hands-on experimentation and greater individual participation in our events and workshops. Students had fun learning about “Sumobots” from the Robotics Team students and their coach. Applause could be heard all around the school as students cheered their favorite Sumobot on to victory in the arena. Mentos and Diet Coke explosions were all over the outdoor basketball court, and “angry birds” were flying through the air in the gym. Students loved using the life-size “Angry Bird Trajectory” slingshot to catapult angry birds through the air into huge stacks of boxes complete with “pigs.” Just like the popular game, knock over all the pigs before you run out of your angry birds to win!
Students competed in their grade levels in one of three different “Science Bowls.” Winning teams received prizes, but more importantly, bragging rights as the Science Bowl Champions in their grades. Mrs. Butler, the 6th and 7th grade science teacher said “The 6th grade Science Bowl was over, the Earth Science questions were finished, and the winners had been announced. With 8 minutes remaining until it was time to change events, the students begged to answer 7th grade Life Science questions just for fun! The spirit of friendly competition was in the air.”
Students in 6th through 8th grade also enjoyed rotating through some of the other events such as “Bottle Car,” “Strongest Shape,” and the “3D Printer Workshop.” Doug and Amie Blanton presented the 3D Printer they built as a family. Students learned about the CAD program and how to use the basics of design to create a three dimensional objects. After a project was designed, students observed the actual printing process. The demonstration was complete with a discussion on 3D practical applications and a happy/sad face coin final product. Amazing!
Elementary students enjoyed their own session of the “3D Printer Workshop” and an “Elementary Science Bowl,” as well. However, the overall elementary itinerary for STEM Day was designed with the younger student in mind. A visit from Ms. Frizzle (the energetic teacher from “The Magic School Bus”) guided students through a seek-and-find animal habitat classification activity. Students learned about Newton’s Three Laws of Motion through stations with a variety of hands-on experiments and building your very own balloon car! Everyone worked together to find giant painted planets hiding in the school using clues and then measured out their distance from the sun with toilet paper squares. A symmetry art activity rounded out the day’s events. Each student learned about symmetry with a video and discussion first, and then demonstrated their knowledge by drawing the missing half of an elementary teacher’s face! This was a unique math-based art activity that really produced some amazing pieces of art.
In recognition of the vital importance of STEM education for the state of Georgia’s future workforce, and its economic competitiveness and growth, Governor Deal signed a proclamation declaring May 3 the first STEM Day for the state. Fulton Science Academy Private School enjoyed their first annual STEM Day as a result of this proclamation and looks forward to even more elaborate celebrations in the years to come!