Post written by Beth Unger, School Programs Coordinator.
Staging a Successful Science Fair
Fort Collins Museum of Discovery has a long-standing tradition of hosting the Poudre School District Science & Engineering Fair and this year, we’ve implemented a few changes that we hope will make this year’s fair the best yet! Follow our logic through the scientific method to learn more about the fair:
- In April of 1994, the former Discovery Center Science Museum hosted the first Poudre R-1 Elementary School District Science Fair.
- From 1994 to 2009, the District Science Fair was hosted at the former museum.
- After the 2009 Science Fair, the Fair was relocated to local junior high schools (Boltz & Lesher) as Fort Collins Museum of Discovery began its transition to the new building where we are found today off Mason Court.
- The District Science Fair has continued to grow each year to include more students from more schools.
- Can we increase community engagement with the district fair by changing the location of the fair?
- If we move the district fair to Fort Collins Museum of Discovery, the projects will be viewed by more community members and inspire scientific curiosity and innovation in our visitors.
- 50 excellent student projects that have received top awards at their school fairs
- 20 outstanding classroom teachers that coordinate their school fairs
- 15 distinguished community judges (including FCMoD board members, graduate students from CSU, and community members from various other science fields)
- 5 volunteers to help everything run smoothly
- Support from our partners in the PSD Science Curriculum Department
- A public space to display the creative and innovative projects that is free and accessible to our community
- Many community members to view and be inspired by the projects
- Fourth and Fifth grade students participate in their school science fairs. Those who receive top awards at their school fairs advance to the district science fair.
- Students bring their projects to FCMoD to display in the Learning Labs at the museum.
- Judges preview student projects and make preliminary evaluations.
- Judges conduct one-on-one interviews with the students to learn more about their project and methods.
- All judges compare their notes on student projects, re-visit the most creative and innovative projects and collectively nominate the projects to receive awards.
- Students, family and friends, as well as museum visitors are invited to the awards ceremony to celebrate the achievements of all the science fair participants and to see who takes home the “Best in Show” prize!
Results/Conclusions: Come to the fair this year to find out for yourself!
If you’re interested to see how this project (and all the student projects!) turn out, join us for this year’s District Science & Engineering Fair! Student projects will be open for public viewing on Saturday, March 30, from 1:30-2:30 pm followed by the Awards Ceremony. After the conclusion of the fair, the public is welcome to view the Science Fair projects between 10:00 am and 1:00 pm free of charge on Sunday, March 31, in the Learning Labs.