Green Science Fair
The Green Science Fair organized by a student-led Horizon Middle School Green Team included interactive displays about alternative energy (sunlight, water, wind), composting worms (red wigglers), how to Reduce-Reuse-Recycle-Repurpose, and numbers from the local landfill detailing how (via a reduction in metric tons) the city of Kearney, NE has recycled more each year over the past 5 years. There were also craft tables showing how to make cell phone speakers out of empty toilet paper and paper towel tubes and how to make scarves and hair ties out of old t-shirts. There was a paper airplane game and recycled golf that used empty wrapping paper tubes for clubs and empty cereal boxes held up by plastic bottles for the holes. Finally, there was a green food table with grapes, limes, honeydew, green apples, and sugar snap peas in paper cups for students to eat.
The various teams of students choose what projects to include each year and past Green Science Fairs have featured a Drip Calculator with a chart that showed how many drips per minute = the number of gallons wasted in a year (so fix those leaky faucets!), switching from plastic bags to reusable ones, how to prepare a no-waste school lunch, an Egg Race student competition with recycled box 'machines' that had to transport an egg without breaking it, bottle cap magnets, plastic bottle terrariums, t-shirt purses and dog sweaters, plastic bag flowers, bottle toss and bottle flip games, and playing a computer version of Green-question 'Family Feud' with the same bells and buzzers as the show. There has been a 'Benefits of Dark Chocolate' table (with samples of course), comparisons of heat generated from an incandescent bulb and an LED bulb using an infrared thermometer, and one year even featured musicians from a BEATS class who played songs on plastic bucket and trash can drums. Displays were initially made using cardboard from recycled refrigerator boxes and zero-VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) paint donated to the school. The Green Science Fair reminds students and attendees that they are the ones who will need to help the planet by making good choices, and there are so many ways to do it!
*Green food and supplies were paid for by Kearney Public's Green Schools Initiative program prize money won by Horizon for Green Excellence and Achievement. All prizes for the games were generously donated by local businesses to support Green Team efforts.
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The yearly Green Science Fair is important because it provides a chance to remind young students that they will be the ones that make a difference for the planet by being good role models who make good choices in the future!