Getting ready for the Environmental Action Showcase at George Mason University

Getting ready for the Environmental Action Showcase at George Mason University, last week our students were movie stars!


Forestville Innovation Lab Update:


After spending the previous weeks reviewing their activities and findings and brainstorming ideas for solving waste and consumption ideas at the school, the students began making a video to share their ideas with others. Students read through a script and took turns being interviewers, directors, script managers, and actors.


The short video is a call to action for the rest of the Forestville school. During this quarter iSchool students learned about several environmental challenges at the school, such as problems with recycling and composting, and learned novel ways to reduce and reuse trash. In the video, students share their findings and top ideas with the school. The video will ask viewers to vote for their favorite idea – thus getting everyone involved in improving the environment – and the idea getting the top vote will guide iSchool’s project in the Spring quarter.


After being movie stars, students in Innovation Lab took a break and were engineers instead. Using their observations that triangular structures were stronger than rectangular ones, they built towers out of our spaghetti and marshmallows. Some structures were over 20 inches high!


Great Falls Library Science Magic Update:


In last week’s class we started our wrap-up of the session by reviewing the many activities and studies that students conducted over the past few weeks. Based on their studies, students developed recommendations for improving the library’s environment, such as planting trees next to the road, increasing recycling, and figuring out why the pond has pollution. We also prepared for our upcoming presentations to the library staff and the Friends of the Great Falls Library. Students will present this Thursday on our last day of class – all are welcome!


In addition to our review we spent some time having hands-on science fun. We built triangles and squares out of spaghetti and marshmallows and saw first-hand why triangular structures are stronger than rectangular ones. Then, the students built towers out of spaghetti that reached heights of 16 and 17 inches!


One of the student recommendations for improving the library was to put a recycling bin in our classroom. iSchool decided to support this idea and provided a bin and paint for the students. Students used stencils to paint on the recycling sign and a “Donated by iSchool” sign. Students will present this recycling bin to the library as a gift this Thursday. This is an example of iSchool’s holistic approach to science education – connecting foundational science with applied place-based studies that lead to environmental action.


Check out the pictures from these classes on our Facebook page.