By Chris Kieffer
TUPELO – Milam Elementary School’s gymnasium was filled with science on Friday.
The school’s sixth-graders launched plastic rockets with air pressure, powered flashlights with magnets and made noises using chalk and aluminum as they participated in nearly 30 different experiments.
This was the sixth consecutive year the school has invited John Hunt, a professor of teacher education at Mississippi College, to lead a Science Fun Day. The event was funded by a grant from the Association for Excellence in Education.
Experiments were stationed at various spots throughout the school’s gym and were staffed by parent volunteers and members of the Tupelo High School Key Club. Students rotated about every four minutes.
“It is fun that we are learning new things we hadn’t learned before,” said student Pierce Games, 12.
Milam science teacher Anne Marie Littrell said the experiments help the students to make real-world connections to what they learn in class. Teachers will refer back to them throughout the year.
“They are building background knowledge so we can talk about these concepts in the future,” she said.
Student Grace Bryan, 11, said it was “really fun” to see the results of the experiments.
Hunt visits about 15 schools each year and has a trip to Saltillo Elementary scheduled later this semester. Before each experiment, students were asked to predict the result and explain their reasons.
“We don’t want them to just give an answer,” Hunt said. “We want individuals to think it through.”