Thirteen students from Albert Einstein Academy of Letters, Arts and Sciences’ STEAM campus competed against the area’s top scientists at the annual Los Angeles County Science and Engineering Fair last weekend.
Held at the Pasadena Convention Center, the fair aimed to promote science education in Los Angeles County and to encourage students to pursue their interests in 38 scientific categories, ranging from biology and physics to environmental management and computers.
“It is great to see our students’ faces light up when they see science in action through these demonstrations, and then they get to apply their learning to a hands-on project in class,” Principal Raffi Martinian said. “Their projects have truly been a culminating piece to all of the hard work that our students and teachers have put in this year. It is wonderful to see them recognized for their efforts.”
This was the second year sixth-grade students from Albert Einstein STEAM Academy qualified for and competed in the Los Angeles County Science and Engineering Fair.
For months leading up to the event, sixth-grade students worked on projects that reflected their own curiosity, interests and passions while also incorporating the scientific method.
“When I introduced the idea of the science fair to my students their enthusiasm toward it blew me away. The motivation and drive they put forth is extraordinary to see,” AEA science teacher Natasha Negreira said. “It is so refreshing to witness the passion behind these sixth-graders’ work.”
Each sixth-grade student was required to complete a science project for the Albert Einstein STEAM Academy’s science fair in February.
Some of the projects included a solar-power radio, a computer program able to categorize literature genres, new products like pain relievers and hair conditioners, among others.
“One student tested advertising claims on a popular fertilizer, and another team wants to make a difference for the homeless with a hair and skin cleanser that doesn’t require running water,” AEA first-grade teacher Julia Chandler said. “Still others pondered topics ranging from ice-melting properties to which household appliances use the most electricity.”
The winners of the Albert Einstein STEAM Academy’s school science fair were then allowed to advance to the next competition: the Los Angeles County Science and Engineering Fair.
“This wasn’t simply a project to my students. They put their heart and soul into this and I am so proud of their efforts,” Negreira said. “There were so many amazing projects, it was quite a challenge to select the finalists.”
During the Los Angeles County Science and Engineering Fair, one student, Nathaniel Cervantes, received a special designation when he won second place in his division and a special award from the Office of Naval Research.
This April, Cervantes will be one of a few students from the Los Angeles Area to compete in the California Science and Engineering Fair.
The continuous emphasis on science and engineering this spring also encouraged students of all grade levels to explore their interests in different scientific areas.
During the school year, students attended science shows and listened to guests speakers, like a NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory that works on the Mars Rover, engineers from a 3-D printing company and a Missouri group that specializes in science assemblies.
Younger students were also allowed to participate in the Albert Einstein STEAM Academy’s school science fair in February. All fourth-grade students submitted projects and all first-grade students completed a group project for the fair as well.
“Our school places great emphasis on science. My first graders have been learning the scientific method throughout the school year,” Chandler said. “Young children are natural scientists and curious explorers, and we do many hands-on experiments and explorations to help develop concepts, and make sense of the natural world around them. Most of my students say that science is their favorite subject.”
AEA students selected for the LA County Science and Engineering Fair:
- Individual projects
- Nathaniel Cervantes
- Jacob Solomon
- Aaron Quevedo
- Tej Rajyagor
- Jibreen Saville
- Team projects
- Ali Eldaoushy, Kenzie Megid, and Jacob Oxciano
- Iris Jiminez and Carrion Whitehead
- Isabella Fisher and Michelle Yoon
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