LCPS Science Showcase at Kinston Community Center
Lenoir County’s middle school regional science fair qualifiers. Photo by Catherine Hardee/Neuse News
Dozens of Lenoir County students showcased their science fair projects Thursday evening at the Kinston Community Center.
The first annual Science Showcase allowed elementary and middle school students who qualified to represent their schools at the regional science fair at East Carolina University February 16 the chance to present their projects to a new audience, and practice their presentation skills before the regional competition.
Dr. Amelia McLeod, Director of Middle Grades Education for Lenoir County Public Schools, said the showcase was a chance for a “dry run” that would allow students to work out any kinks in their projects. There were reviewers at the event who listened to each student’s presentation, and took notes in order to provide feedback to help students improve.
The event took place because the state organization changed the regional alignment, placing Lenoir County in the Northeast District, whose rules allow each elementary school to send three students to the regional competition and each middle school to send one student in each of six categories. A total of twenty-two middle school students will be going to the regional competition.
Middle schoolers had projects ranging from the visibility of stars due to light pollution to the effects of temperature on baseballs. Contentnea-Savannah seventh-grader Marie Taylor used a star viewer in different locations to measure the effect of different levels of light on different constellations.
E. B. Frink seventh-grader Eli Kearney’s project was inspired by his love of baseball. He subjected baseballs to different temperatures, and then measured how high the balls bounced when dropped from a height of four feet. He was able to determine that the colder the baseballs were, the less they bounced.
La Grange Elementary School fifth-grader Marissa Doyle experimented with the use of kitchen waste as fertilizer, comparing it to commercial products, and found that banana peels provided the best nutrition of the foods she tested, and even performed better than the commercial fertilizers. Northeast Elementary School fifth-grader Raquan Daniels found a way to make video games part of his schoolwork. His project measured the effect of a zombie video game on his heart rate as he played.
All the students who participated received a certificate in recognition of their accomplishment in qualifying for the regional science fair. Superintendent Brent Williams expressed his pride in the students during his closing remarks, and said he was confident that Lenoir County students would continue their tradition of excellence at regional competitions. “It is very rewarding to me to interact with students and see the learning and see what they will take away…I think this represents learning in its purest form...learning by doing,” he said.