Stand Up for Public Education
BURLINGTON — A team from Wheatland Center School earned a second place finish in a national STEAM design challenge, according to a story in West of the i.
Students from Wheatland’s personalized learning academy, PATHS, participated in the Biomimicry Youth Design Challenge, which asks middle and high school students to design solutions to the climate crisis.
Team members receiving recognition were Jaini Beck, Mason Biehn, Safyire Guthrie, Gavin Heriford, and Ronan Bacle. Students were awarded $750 to be spent on future school projects.
The students created “Reef Guard,” which protects coral reefs from UV radiation and rising ocean temperatures. They created a floating underwater shade structure inspired by giant lily pads and the UV-reflecting properties of spiders’ webs.
Judges said praised the team’s choice of topic and approach.
“I actually learned how the bleaching process works from their research and had not realized the algae connection. Their research is commendable, and the engineering they applied and the testing they did was very impressive.” said judge Scott Randall.
To learn more about the challenge and this year’s winners, visit their website.
The full story is posted at West of the i.
THREE LAKES — Though the Three Lakes School District’s fab lab has had to pause its hands-on STEAM education during the pandemic, it continues helping its local community.
The fab lab (short for fabrication laboratory) has created 95 face shields for the Oneida County Sheriff’s Office, 12 for a local grocery store and 10 for another local business, fab lab director Nate Koch says. Face shields are believed to be an effective way to prevent the spread of COVID-19, as detailed in this April article in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
It’s far from the first time the fab lab has helped its local community. Other projects have included the design and creation of magazine holders for the local library and models for the local railroad club.
The fab lab was also profiled in the December 2015 issue of Wisconsin School News.
To learn more about the fab lab, visit their website.
WILLIAMS BAY — The Williams Bay History Club has been designated as one of the top 10 in the nation by the National History Club, according to a story in the Lake Geneva Regional News.
Robert Nasson, president of the National History Club, said the Williams Bay chapter was chosen because of its outstanding community involvement in activities such as maintaining Frost Park, hosting fundraisers, coordinating field trips and participating in the annual History Bowl competition.
“Williams Bay’s club is very active in the community,” Nasson said. “They’re just consistently spectacular in what they do.”
Williams Bay History Club adviser Deb Soplanda said she was proud the club was chosen out of hundreds of chapters t
ughout the nation, and she was glad that students’ work was being recognized.
“It’s great for the kids to see what they do and how they do it really does make a difference, and is noticed on a national level,” she said.
Read the full story at the newspaper’s website.
SEVASTOPOL — A team of Sevastopol eighth graders built an underwater robot to take second place in a regional competition, according to a story in the Door County Pulse.
For taking second in the Feb. 22 regional competition, the team is headed to the University of Maryland for the 2020 International SeaPerch Challenge from May 30-31.
SeaPerch is an underwater robotics program that teachers engineering and science concepts through the assembly and use of a remotely operated vehicle.
The team is also trying to raise additional funds to cover the estimated $2,500 it needs to attend an international challenge.
Read the full story here.
If you’d like to learn more about robotics in Wisconsin (with information about how to get started) read this article in the January issue of Wisconsin School News.
HAYWARD — A Hayward High School student has become the first to enroll in a dual enrollment technical diploma program offered by Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College (WITC) and the Hayward Community Schools, according to a story in the Sawyer County Record.
Austin Conner, a senior, is earning both college and high school credit.
“Soon, students at HHS will be making their course selections for next year. Hopefully they will take advantage of the savings of earning college credit for free while in high school,” instructor Julie Thompson told the newspaper.
MADISON — La Crosse fourth-graders who heard spring peepers chirp from a school pond asked Wisconsin legislators to make the tiny frog the state amphibian, WKBT-TV reported.
The quest to have the peeper represent the state tied the environmental curriculum with studying how proposals become laws, teacher Kris Franzini told the newspaper.
Kids said their nervousness quickly abated.
“When I started talking, I was nervous,” Ian Honaker said. “But after awhile, I wasn’t.”
WisconsinEye has video of the children testifying.
Read the full story and watch the video at the TV station’s website.
ALTOONA — Altoona football players are reading to third graders, who, as a reward for reading, will be able to toss a pie in a player’s face, WEAU 13 News reported.
“At that point we’re promoting reading and making reading a cool thing for kids to do because to get good at reading you have to practice,” Altoona Head Football Coach Chad Hanson told the TV station. “Each kid who reads 400 minutes will then get their name put in a hat, and then we draw one name and that name will get to throw a pie at the football player that their class adopted.”
Read the story and watch the video on the station’s website.
MILWAUKEE — A small Milwaukee Public Schools program is easing the transition of mostly refugee children whose families come from around the world, according to a story in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
The program teaches these children both content and the English language to prepare them for high school.
“Education is a lifeline for these people,” Kalyani Rai, an associate professor of urban community development at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee who works on refugee issues, told the newspaper. “They’ve lost everything. And now the education of the children is everything.”
Read the story on the newspaper’s website.
GREEN BAY — Green Bay high schoolers are raising hundreds of perch for sale while using byproducts from the process to grow plants to eat, according to WFRV-TV.
“The trout back there, they were like this big,” Student Lab Assistant Ben Haines told the TV station, indicating a small fish with his fingers. “Now they’re probably like 14 inches or so.”
The fishes’ wastes nourishes edible plants.
“I can get from seed to market-sized lettuce and greens in six weeks,” agriscience teacher Tom Sebranek said. “So we can cycle that throughout and actually feed our own schools fresh stuff that we wouldn’t have to worry about.”
Read the story and watch video at the station’s website.
MILWAUKEE — Wisconsin high school students recently took part in an auto tech competition at a Milwaukee event aimed at spurring interest in automotive careers, CBS 58 reported.
Two of the six-member student teams won a chance to go to New York and represent Wisconsin in a national auto technology competition, according to the story.
Read the full story and watch the video here.