Young scientists: GIS students use their imaginations at inaugural science fair

Mike Moore photo
CJ Toner demonstrates how lemon juice is heat resistant when applied to bread and placed into a toaster. He and Carlee Skilbred’s science project was called “Ghost Toast.”

Mike Moore

Homemade lava lamps that bubbled and stirred, an erupting volcano, burnt toast and theories on how various substances rot teeth were just some of the entries. For the first time, Glenrock Intermediate School students in all grades had the option to take part in what could be the first of many science fairs to come.
Students from fourth, fifth and sixth grades had just over a month to come up with a unique idea for their projects that could be done with a partner or by themselves.
The idea to kick start a science fair came from fourth-grade teacher Desirae Hobbs, who was approached by parents and teachers expressing an interest in getting more science-related activities in the classroom. Hobbs is also the president of the school’s parent teacher organization (PTO), so she decided to sponsor the fair.
“We don’t have enough science in our curriculum now so it’s important because they need more of it,” she said. “It gets their minds working. Math and reading are important, but this gets the fun stuff going, too.”
Neighbors CJ Toner and Carlee Skilbred teamed up for one of the nine projects that lined the school hallway on Monday and Tuesday of this week.
The two were testing if lemon juice was a heat resistant liquid. To demonstrate their theory, they used a few loaves of bread and a 10-year-old toaster from Toner’s family RV for their project called “Ghost Toast.”
“We had a couple slip-ups every now and then with the toaster smoking,” Toner said. “But it was fun.”
“When you put lemon juice on a normal piece of bread, you can’t see the design,” Skilbred said. “And when you put it in the toaster then it shows up like a ghost.”
“We had a lot of giggles in this,” Toner said as he and Skilbred laughed together.
Hobbs said she really felt the excitement from the students as they presented their work in a group setting Monday.
“I’m very impressed,” Hobbs said of the projects. “It’s hard because we’ve never done one. Coming up with all of the things that go into a science fair project I was thinking they wouldn’t be able to get all of those pieces and a lot of them did.”
On Tuesday, parents were invited to see the work and after two days of being up for everyone to see, three winners were selected.
Toner and Skilbred took first place for “Ghost Toast,” while Braxton Theien secured second for his project entitled “How Density Affects Resistance (Mammoth). Manny Coulter and Teagan Teinsvold rounded out third place for their project called “Shades of Teeth,” with Bailey Mueller winning people’s choice for “Everything but the Oink.”
Even though Toner and Skilbred won the first science fair, they know what they would do differently if they could do it all over again.
“Not use an old toaster that’s filled with dirt,” he said.
“And rye bread doesn’t work so well so don’t try it,” Skilbred added.


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