Students fused art and research for the annual Middle School Illumination Fair, which went on view to the Doane Stuart Community in the library on Thursday.
In the Illumination Fair, students in grades 5 and 7 take on a true hypothesis-testing science experiment. Over the course of several months, they conduct testing and collect data in order to help answer a research question. Important skills like data analysis, graphing and scientific writing are learned and practiced. Questions this year ranged from “which type of water freezes fastest?” to “how does electro-plating affect electrical conduction?”
Students in grades 6 and 8 complete a Learning Fair project. In this, they choose a topic which interests and intrigues them and then formulate a question which they attempt to answer using detailed research. Several months are spent exploring a variety of sources and collecting relevant information, which students then use to write a paper and to prepare an engaging visual presentation. Important skills like writing a thesis statement, note taking, drafting an outline and compiling a bibliography are learned and practiced. This year topics ranged from Ocean Pollution to Child Labor.
Middle School Co-Director Mr. H said the Illumination Fair allows Doane Stuart’s young students to become passionate experts on a topic which truly interests them and allows personal ownership of the learning.