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Outreach

USGS Assists with Science Fairs in Falmouth, Massachusetts


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Students walk by a life-size inflatable whale model
Above: Students walk by a life-size inflatable whale model from Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. Anne Smrcina was inside the model, where one of her responsibilities was to keep students from climbing into the fins. [larger version]

USGS scientists Claudia Flores and Jane Denny
Above: USGS scientists Claudia Flores (on left, with back to camera) and Jane Denny (right, partly hidden by visitor) provide detailed information about their work. [larger version]

Researchers from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)'s Woods Hole Science Center in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, were impressed with the innovative scope of student projects in this year's science fairs in the neighboring community of Falmouth.

The 2009 science-fair activities came in three phases. Before the science fairs began, USGS personnel acted as mentors at the Lawrence School, where they assisted 6th- through 8th-grade teachers by giving students constructive criticism on project outlines and guiding them in the setup and methods of their chosen projects. Eight USGS scientists served as judges at the first fair of the year: the annual Science Fair competition at Falmouth Academy, where science projects are a core part of the school curriculum. A week later, Falmouth High School hosted the Falmouth Public Schools Science Fair, where students in grades K-12 enjoyed a wide variety of activities that included hot-air balloons (part of a physics experiment) wafting to the rafters. An inflatable whale model from Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary gave students a chance to step inside and receive a briefing from Anne Smrcina, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) educator who interacts on occasion with USGS staff to develop material for outreach activities. To help inspire students to think about careers in science, Kama Thieler, liaison for the Woods Hole Science and Technology Education Partnership (WHSTEP), arranged for five major science institutions to have a presence at Falmouth High School. The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the Sea Education Association, the Marine Biological Laboratory, the Woods Hole Research Center, and the USGS Woods Hole Science Center all displayed examples of their Earth-science work.

USGS researchers who served as mentors at the Lawrence School included Brian Buczkowski, Neil Ganju, Claudia Flores, Kama Thieler, and Bill Waite. Those who judged at Falmouth Academy's Science Fair were Uri ten Brink, Brian Buczkowski, Jason Chaytor, Debbie Hutchinson, Elizabeth Pendleton, John Pohlman, Dave Twichell, and Bill Waite. Participants in the Falmouth Public Schools Science Fair at Falmouth High School were Mike Bothner, Jane Denny, Claudia Flores, Chris Polloni, Kathy Scanlon, Bill Waite, Bill Winters, and Chuck Worley.


Related Sound Waves Stories
USGS Participates in Judging Falmouth Academy Science Fair Projects
April 2008

Related Web Sites
Science Fair Project Ideas
USGS (U.S. Geological Survey)
Science Fair Central
Discovery Channel

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Research
cover story:
CO2 May Help Wetlands Keep Pace with Sea-Level Rise

Erosion Doubles Along Alaska's Arctic Coast

Shrinking Beaufort Sea Coastline

Study Documents Rapid Disappearance of Antarctica's Ice Shelves

Effects of Climate Change on Infectious Diseases

Outreach Diamondback Terrapin Survival

Science Fairs in Falmouth, MA

Meetings Coastal Erosion Workshop in Ghana

Awards USGS Findings Used to Preserve Health of Coral Reef

Ted Melis Receives DOI Meritorious Service Award

High-Flow Experiment from Dam Leads to Awards

Researchers Receive DOI Meritorious Service Awards

Miles Receives Diversity Award

Group Honored for Research on Alaska

Government Communicators Award

Staff Team Wins Silver in Curling Club Nationals

Publications May 2009 Publications List


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