Costumes and chemistry make for fun learning at PLAS
Published 3:00 am Thursday, October 30, 2014
By Ngoc Vo
Pike Liberal Arts School elementary students dressed up in their Halloween costumes to celebrate not only their homecoming week but also to celebrate science on Wednesday.
Students from kindergarten to fifth grade were invited to the Monster Lab hosted by the high school chemistry classes.
Alissa Jordan, PCLA chemistry teacher, said the event is designed to make young students enthusiastic about chemistry and sciences.
“The goal is to get children at a very young age to react ‘Oh yeah’ excitedly when they hear someone talk about science,” Jordan said.
“The idea is to build the children’s curiosity, to change how they think about science. Science is hard but not boring. It’s hard but fun, interesting and worth learning.”
According to Jordan, Monster Lab is also beneficial to the high school students.
“We are doing experiments today purely for show,” Jordan said.
“The (high school) students who would learn the why and how of the chemical reactions are getting hands-on experience.”
Students in Jordan’s class were teamed up in different projects including experiments with green fire, memory metal, water marbles and vinegar and soda balloons. The lab is decorated in Halloween theme with dark color strips, artificial spider webs and carved pumpkins.
Elementary students had a chance to talk to the presenters and actually participated in portions of the experiments. They also interacted with the robots dressed up like little monsters built by PLAS chemistry/science classes.
“I like to watch how different chemicals react to each other,” said Marty Lasseter, a student presenter. “Nothing is really what it seems. You have to look closer. I think (this event) helps the young students to develop interest in science in the future.”
Jordan said this is the first time she had organized the Monster Lab and she was learning as the event unfolded. She is hopeful that the school would continue to host the event next year and plan enough time for the entire school to participate.