By Julia Grippe
Holt Journal Staff Writer
DIMONDALE – Science day, one of the most exciting days of the year at Dimondale Elementary School, provided hands-on science activities for students on Feb. 8.
Scientists from different fields gathered at the school to conduct seminars and experiments for the kids throughout the school day.
Principal James Cooper said, “Science day happens every other year. On the off year, we do Art in the Park.”
Jill Tribell, third grade teacher and historian, said she has been working at Dimondale Elementary for 40 years.
“Science day was started by two teachers who felt that the kids needed to know more about science,” said Tribell. “It gets kids excited about science. The field of science is so varied.”
“Science day is better than every other day.”
— Ethan Johnson, third grader at Dimondale.
Cooper said the school wanted a large number of women scientists involved.
“In the beginning, we worked hard to get women scientists. In the past few years, it’s been easier to find more women,” said Tribell.
All students, kindergarten through fourth grade, participate in science day, said Tribell.
Tribell said the students make bulletin boards, thank you cards and read books about science in preparation for science day.
We have 22 classrooms with a scientist in each room, said Tribell. Each student gets six choices of scientists and is assigned to three of them. All the activities are very hands-on.
“Some scientists come from our district, but most are from outside. Anytime we can get the community involved, it’s a good thing,” said Tribell.
Tribell said the day is made up of a morning and afternoon assembly as well as seminars and experiments. The students also have a chance to experience science outside the classroom.
Dimondale has an outdoor nature center next to the school that expands to about four acres, said Cooper.
The school cut out the invasive plants and turned it into a nature center that gets kids outside to learn about science.
Tribell said students have the opportunity to make their own science project and display it during science day.
There were fewer projects this year, said Tribell, but there’s always the volcano model.
Dimondale looks to parents to help out with science day. “We like to have parents involved where their kids go to school,” said Tribell.
Tribell said one of the parents of a Dimondale second grader came to science day and said, “My daughter just really wanted me to come. She said I have to come.”
Third grader, Erica Fogarty, said her mom helped with the fight fighters that came to do a presentation for science day.
“You get to learn about a lot of cool stuff. I think my friends like it a lot,” said Erica.