WATERTOWN, Mass. – As part of the school’s STEM Initiative, St. Stephen’s Armenian Elementary School hosted STEM Month from March through April. Students engaged in a variety of activities designed to spark creative and innovative thinking across all fields of science.The mission of this initiative is to increase the focus and emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) throughout the school.
Stem Month included: computer programming (K-5), robotics, engineering design challenges, math activities, presentations by Audubon Society instructors and Animal Ambassadors and a field trip to the Harvard Natural History Museum.
On April 8, students demonstrated everything their understanding of these important subjects at a Science Fair, which included the following presentations:
Gr. 5: After studying potential and kinetic energy, students worked with partners to create the most energy for their roller coaster engineering design.
Gr. 4: After exploring how forms of energy can be transferred, students applied the engineering process, first individually, then with a partner creating catapults.
Gr. 3: The third graders built windmills to study energy in motion. Their goal was to figure out the most efficient way to transfer the kinetic energy from the wind to do work.
Gr. 2: The second graders worked in pairs to engineer cost effective boats that would float and hold the most weight. This project introduced students to monetary concepts and budgeting as well as engineering successes and failures.
Gr. 1: The first graders investigated different birds and how the shape of their beaks determines the type of the food they can eat. They experimented with toothpicks, spoons and tweezers to simulate three different types of beaks. The children then practiced picking up four different types of “food” to figure out which beak could pick up the most food.
Kindergarten: The kindergarten classroom studied the life cycle of the chicken by incubating and hatching chicken eggs in the classroom. The children learned the needs of the chicks during incubation and hatching. They learned new vocabulary words in their understanding of the parts of the egg.
Parents, grandparents and friends of the school enjoyed viewing and learning about the students’ projects. Lisa Ann Gulesserian, lecturer at Harvard University and students enrolled in her Armenian Language and Culture class also visited. The college students had prepared a small booklet of interesting science facts in Armenian that they distributed to the student body.