News

Festival Promotes Science as Fun Frontier

Educators in the United States are trying to make science, technology, engineering and math more appealing to students.  Organizers of the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington Friday through Sunday (April 27-29) hope the hands-on exhibits help to accomplish that goal.

To these children, it's all fun and games.  But the marbles in this so-called "Chaos Machine" teach them about physics, gravity and more, says exhibitor Tony Montuori.

"It also teaches kids all kinds of useful skills about debugging, engineering, because you look at the track and you figure out, 'Hey, what's wrong with it?  How can I make it better?'" Montuori noted.   

From robotic cars to wheels on Mars, exhibitors showed everything from human revolutions to a different kind of spin that shows how the body works.  

There were robots controlled by sensors on clothes and one controlled by an iPad.

Anousheh Ansari traveled to the International Space Station at her own expense and hopes to inspire students.

"I think this is a wonderful event where they get exposure to different areas of science and can think about some career opportunities, things they can do when they enter the job market," Ansari said.

And there is plenty of interest in NASA's next generation space capsule, the Orion.

"I'm glad to see the whole space program is going on because, I don't know, it seemed to me at least that all was kind of dead, but it's alive and well and looks great," said Fourteen year-old student Andrew Clancy.

And there was a chance to fly an F-16 Fighting Falcon cockpit demonstrator and see drones, robots, robots and more robots.

Daria Jordan of Spelman College showed off the robot she programmed.

"The project name is 'Beyoncebot' and is using a humanoid robot to address childhood obesity," Jordan explained.

Students also got a chance to walk across water, see the air, and feel the air in a hurricane simulator.

They also checked out observatories and observations from a historical figure, Albert Einstein. 

Organizers say the goal is to get kids as excited about scientists and engineers as they are about Hollywood celebrities and sports stars.

Educators in the United States are trying to make science, technology, engineering and math more appealing to students. Organizers of the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington Friday through Sunday (April 27-29) hope the hands-on exhibits help to accomplish that goal.

To these children, it's all fun and games. But the marbles in this so-called "Chaos Machine" teach them about physics, gravity and more, says exhibitor Tony Montuori.

"It also teaches kids all kinds of useful skills about debugging, engineering, because you look at the track and you figure out, 'Hey, what's wrong with it? How can I make it better?'" Montuori noted.

From robotic cars to wheels on Mars, exhibitors showed everything from human revolutions to a different kind of spin that shows how the body works.

There were robots controlled by sensors on clothes and one controlled by an iPad.

Anousheh Ansari traveled to the International Space Station at her own expense and hopes to inspire students.

"I think this is a wonderful event where they get exposure to different areas of science and can think about some career opportunities, things they can do when they enter the job market," Ansari said.

And there is plenty of interest in NASA's next generation space capsule, the Orion.

"I'm glad to see the whole space program is going on because, I don't know, it seemed to me at least that all was kind of dead, but it's alive and well and looks great," said Fourteen year-old student Andrew Clancy.

And there was a chance to fly an F-16 Fighting Falcon cockpit demonstrator and see drones, robots, robots and more robots.

Daria Jordan of Spelman College showed off the robot she programmed.

"The project name is 'Beyoncebot' and is using a humanoid robot to address childhood obesity," Jordan explained.

Students also got a chance to walk across water, see the air, and feel the air in a hurricane simulator.

They also checked out observatories and observations from a historical figure, Albert Einstein.

Organizers say the goal is to get kids as excited about scientists and engineers as they are about Hollywood celebrities and sports stars.

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs