Garrison Students Go MAD for Science

MAD students at work

Event is a lead-in to March science fair

The Garrison Union Free School (GUFS) started the New Year with a bang, celebrating MAD Science Week (Moms and Dads Doing Science) the first week back from Winter Recess.  MAD Science Week is a new program initiated by the GUFS PTA to get parents and students excited about science. “Science is one of our many important academic initiatives at the Garrison School,” said Principal Stephanie Impellittiere. “MAD Science Week gives all of our students the opportunity to become real scientists by beginning to use the scientific method of asking ‘what if’ questions and testing their hypotheses through the experiments they encounter this week. It’s a perfect starting point in preparation for the school science fair in March.”

On Tuesday, Jan. 3, the PTA sponsored a traveling science show assembly from the Franklin Institute.  The Institute’s science educators taught students about “hot and cold” and the three states of matter –  solids, liquids and gases – by making balloons shrink, bubbles freeze and a rubber ball shatter by using liquid nitrogen. The elementary grades focused on different experiments including: chemical reactions (by means of “sandwich bag bombs”), magnetism, gravity and “mysterious forces,” colors, gases and elasticity. The middle school students participated in discussions about endangered species and polar bears in Manitoba.

Thursday, a MAD Science evening was held.  Following a dinner focusing on good nutrition, children and parents went to the gymnasium for hands-on experiments and demonstrations with the Putnam Children’s Discovery Center.  Jerome Downey, a local fitness expert from Body Language NY, was also onsite to discuss and demonstrate family fitness activities.  The library was turned into a planetarium for the evening as representatives from the Westchester Astronomy Club guided star-gazers through the wonders of our galaxy. “It has been an exciting week,” said Lisa Mechaley, the MAD Science Week organizer. “We are looking forward to making this an annual event.”

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