STEM Friday Topic Options

(Note: This list of topics scrolls)

Anchialine Pools (4th through 12th grade)

Anchialine pools are unique coastal brackish water pools that only occur on the islands of Hawaiʻi. Over use of groundwater has led to the depletion of the aquifers that keep these pools in balance. Students build physical models to learn how the hidden groundwater is vital to the survival of these culturally significant pools.

Get Critical! (6th through 12th grade)

How does information get from one place to another so quickly? In this research experience, we will conduct experiments with optical fibers to learn about reflection, refraction, critical angles, and diffraction. Students even get a chance to send text messages between groups!

Get Energized! (4th through 12th grade)

Learn what it takes to develop a new, more efficient battery and solar panel. Students will test different materials and use their own data to help them construct a working rechargeable battery and solar cell using skills and techniques straight out of a CSU research laboratory.
New: This topic is also available on Feb 9th and 16 at the Powerhouse Energy Campus and includes a bonus 30 minute tour of this amazing facility! Presented by the CSU Energy Club.

Pico Pong (4th through 12th grade)

Explore the interaction between the virtual and physical worlds with this unique kit. You will learn how to code a simple game (Pong) in the Scratch programming environment and then use a Pico sensor board to collect a variety of sensor data: light, pressure, flex, sound, and position. You will then use these data to control the game paddles. All on a Raspberry Pi mini computer!

Really Ancient Fossils (6th through 12th grade)

Learn how paleontologists uncover past events that led to the fossilization of a community of sea creatures millions of years ago. Students will excavate a model rock formation, make a map, record their observations in a science notebook, and compare their observations to reference materials.

Secrets of the Hibernators (6th through 12th grade)

Marmots, squirrels, and bears are fascinating animals who hold answers to many of the problems that humans face. One serious problem is obesity. Shedding extra weight is very difficult for many of us, but is a normal part of their annual cycle. Another human problem that they have apparently solved is avoiding bone loss during long periods of inactivity during hibernation.

Small Fish, Big Questions (6th through 12th grade)

Guppies you see at the pet store come in a wide variety of colors and fin shapes. In this research experience, we will compare pet store guppies to guppies from high and low predation environments in Trinidad. Through careful observation you will get a feel for how biological changes over time occur. Although these guppies are tiny, they are helping us solve some of the biggest questions in science today!

Solar Cars (4th through 12th grade)

Using raw materials such as gears, propellers, motors, solar cells, wood, and math, teams learn about engineering design principals and iterative prototyping as they design the most efficient car possible.
New: This topic is also available on Feb 9th and 16 at the Powerhouse Energy Campus and includes a bonus 30 minute tour of this amazing facility! Presented by the CSU Energy Club.

Soil Carbon (6th through 12th grade)

Explore how carbon moves through the environment as you analyze three soil samples from different areas of the 2012 High Park Fire. Students develop real lab skills to determine which of the samples was intensely burned, moderately burned, or unburned.

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