Dow puts students in the driver’s seat

Fourth, fifth and sixth grade students showcased their science knowledge at a special Science Night held recently, at Lakewood Elementary. Science Night is part of an innovative program, “Putting Students in the Driver’s Seat: An exploration of Motion and Force,” that was awarded $1,960 by Dow’s Educational Enhancement Grant last year.

“Dow is committed to helping educators further academic excellence in math and science,” said Stanley Dufrene, St. Charles Operations Community Relations Manager. “We are proud to support these innovate school programs and excited to soon be awarding grants to 2006 recipients.”

Using the cars they created in class, student teams conducted various experiments that demonstrated their understanding of speed, motion, force and energy for the local community. Eight experiments, Balloon Blast, Far Car, Safe Passengers, Riding the Waves, Tic Toc Roads, Run Baby Run, Weight and Motion and Magnetize, were showcased at the science night and will be displayed at the St. Charles Parish School Board Office and the Luling Public Library.

“Partnering the children from different levels was a great way to teach,” said Ms. Guarisco, teacher at Lakewood Elementary. “I got some new ideas to teach force and motion by observing some of the projects that the students created.”

The teams were compiled of fourth, fifth and sixth grade students. Not only did the project allow students to teach those from other grades, but also allowed students to teach adults what they have been learning.

“This project is wonderful because it enables students to step into the “driver’s seat” and teach the concepts as they learn,” remarked Dufrene.

The Dow Educational Enhancement School Grant Program provides funding for innovative and creative projects that promote academic excellence in the areas of science and mathematics. The 2006 Educational Grant program is in the evaluation stage and recipients will be named May 17 following the evaluation committee’s recommendation. The evaluation committee is made up of community members, retirees and employees.

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