Morrill Middle School
October 2021 - May 2022

Opportunity X Representatives: Brian Chen, Stephen Xia, Melody Yin

Club advisors: Mr. Nathan Laing, science teacher,  Mr. Thomas Carroll, principal

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This is our fourth year at Morrill Middle School. After communicating with their head of school, we proceeded with an online club, sending kits every month with experiment materials.

 

10/4/2021: Orientation

We started our first session by getting to know our students and introducing ourselves. According to the teacher’s headcount, about 40 students showed up to the first day alone.

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10/11/2021: Light

This week, we covered the basic concepts of light and concepts such as refraction and diffraction, before challenging the students to find examples of them in real life. In order to further demonstrate these concepts, we had them experiment with diffraction and refraction by observing a drawing behind a cup of water. Although students did not have individual cameras this week, it was still clear that they were engaged and interested in the activity, as they were actively raising their hands and asking us interesting and insightful questions.

10/18/21: Project Brainstorming

Today we spoke to the students about potential science projects and had them create their own ‘mind maps’ in their own notebooks to determine their potential interests.

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10/25/2021: Project Brainstorming cont.

Although the students determined their potential fields of interest last week, this week we focused on refining their ideas and making a hypothesis. We spoke about the importance of impact vs feasibility and gave them time to continue working on their project ideas.

11/1/2021: Electricity and Magnetism

This week, we taught the students about magnetism and its applications in real life, before specifically focusing on electromagnets. We used a nail, a wire, and a battery to create one ourselves and demonstrated its functionality with paper clips and other magnetic objects. By this time, we were able to make use of individual computers at each table, so the students could freely interact with us via the chat.

11/8/2021: Chromatography

We performed a more complicated experiment this week related to chromatography. The students extracted food coloring from skittles and placed them on a coffee filter to demonstrate properties of water. After performing the initial experiment, we talked about the properties of water, specifically its polar properties and cohesion, adhesion, and surface tension. An application of these properties in real life was also discussed, specifically in capillary action. This was also the week we had students begin to finalize their own project ideas. We spoke about local science competitions, along with how they can participate in them.