Last week, our Middle School students had the opportunity to attend SciFest, a Virtual STEM Expo organized by the USA Science & Engineering Festival: "For the past decade, the USA Science & Engineering Festival has been proud to offer the largest and only national science festival with thousands of hands-on activities, conversations with STEM mentors, and exciting stage shows." This year, SciFest was all online, and students were able to "virtually experience exhibit booths featuring hands-on and interactive STEM content, hunt for clues and earn badges and prizes in the Scavenger Hunt, and find their next opportunity in the College Career Center."
For those who are interested, SciFest is free to attend and has been extended until October 31. CLICK HERE for more information and to register!
Some students took some screenshots and shared their experiences:
"At SciFest, there are different exhibits based around different subjects. Inside each subject, there are different ‘levels, or topics within that subject. Each of these topics is an exhibit, and in each one, there are multiple interactive booths, each one set up by a different company or organization. One of the most prominent companies there was NASA; however, others included the National Math Festival, Discovery Education, and more.
The booths had videos, links to experiments, and more. There was also a scavenger hunt, which required you to watch videos on almost all the topics, and a ‘stage,’ with longer, more specific videos of experts preforming. I personally learned a lot, as the variety allows you to learn about so many different topics. I started with something about water conservation, and ended up watching multiple videos about magic, that in reality was actually math or science. The video I enjoyed learning from the most was a video on water conservation, which had facts such as that we use 80 to 100 gallons of water per person per day just from the tap!"
-Maggie M., Grade 8
"Last week, the whole Middle School attended the SciFest, a museum that this year went virtual through an online platform! SciFest focused on educational and interactive exhibits about almost any type of science for students to explore: health, space and astrology, engineering and tech, energy, etc. The booths were pretty interactive with videos, some quizzes, and diagrams of objects that you could look at closely. At first, it could get a bit confusing; however, later on, I found an additional feature to the platform that really helped me out.
If you haven’t seen it already, I really recommend the scavenger hunt, a feature to the SciFest that helped with some of the overwhelming amounts of information, where you could find clues in different booths to earn points, while still learning new things on the way. SciFest had so many exhibits, it was nice for the scavenger hunt to help pinpoint places for you. Meanwhile, students had to slowly start to fill out a Padlet with one thing they learned at the SciFest, and something I noticed was how many different things people had written. Barely anyone wrote the same thing as someone else!
I highly recommend the Space and Aviation Booth, where you can learn about almost every aspect of space: starting from its history, the first woman on the moon, and (my personal favorite) an Ask NASA video! In the end, the sometimes confusing parts of SciFest can get figured out with the scavenger hunt and be a fun educational experience!"
-Sienna R., Grade 6