PALMDALE – Summerwind Intermediate School Friday held its first Space Fair, a carnival put together and ran entirely by junior high school students for early elementary students from the neighboring school.
“They had to assemble all the materials they needed, plan out what they needed to do and get it all done in a very specific time frame,” said coordinator and science teacher Edward Warren.
Warren said about 150 junior high school students participated. The students were broken into teams to put their learning into practice.
The teams created about 20 interactive space-related games and activities for more than 500 early elementary students to enjoy, Warren said.
One group created a project called Martian Goo, a hit with the young students.
“They are taking what they learned in eighth grade science this year about chemical polymer and they’re having the elementary school students create sort of a slime in various colors they can then make and then take home,” said Warren.
Another project was called Race to Space, a water maze built onto a table for duck racing.
“The elementary students pick ducks by name and drop them into the water at the start line,” said Warren. “The current carries the ducks around and gets them to the finish line.”
The highlight for many of the young students was a musical space performance.
Calling themselves the Planetary Posse, the elder students danced in sync and belted out raps that described each planet in the solar system.
Principal Bob Rodrigo said a goal of the Space Fair was to make learning fun for students, but more importantly, he hoped the fair would help change the students’ mindsets.
“The kids get into the mindset that science and math are awful and hard, but when you give them a chance to integrate science and math into an environment that’s fun, it changes mindsets,” said Rodrigo. “That’s the part that’s most exciting for me.”