Science projects help students learn 21st-century skills

Seventh-grader Sarah Huber explains her science fair project to judge Carly Lewis, a Science Methods student at St. Ambrose University in Davenport.

The All Saints middle school science fair took place on Feb. 2 in the school café and gymnasium. Sixth- and seventh-grade students learned the scientific process as they designed and carried out their experiment. They learned to research to make their hypothesis and developed computer skills in word processing and graphing. They worked on time management and developed their presentation skills.  These are all 21st-century skills.

Eighth-grade students made model roller coasters as they studied physical science and displayed the creations at the fair.

During Catholic Schools Week, eighth-grade students designed a simple activity to carry out in each of the K-5 classrooms.  The younger students traveled to five different classrooms and the older students helped the younger children perform experiments. Some of the experiments were making a hoop glider and a balloon rocket, testing the effect of light on worms, testing acids and bases and setting up an electrical circuit.

All Saints science teacher Pauline Thomsen has collaborated with Rachel Serianz, a professor of education at St. Ambrose University in Davenport. Serianz’ Science Methods students helped judge student projects. Some Science Methods students have the opportunity to come in to teacher Pauline Thomsen’s science classes to gain classroom experience. This collaboration has taken place for the last three years.


Both St. Ambrose and All Saints are looking for ways to collaborate in the future.

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