Day Trip to Pueblo Central High School
Cherelle Bishop, Krystle Frahm, and Ryan Selby
During fall 2011, three graduate fellows had the unique opportunity to integrate GK-12 developed curriculum at Pueblo Central High School. Through a collaboration between Colorado Higher-Education Interdisciplinary Project (CHIP) and several teachers at Pueblo central High lead by Thomas Murray, graduate fellows used previously-developed curriculum in chemistry, physics and biology classrooms on October 24, 2011.
The aim of this experience was to use curriculum that had been developed already for the GK-12 project at Colorado State University to engage new students. Fellows facilitated lessons and activities that teach fundamental scientific theory and force student to think critically to solve problems. Students also had the opportunity to speak with the fellows about careers in science and how scientific research has open up many opportunities for the fellows.
The chemistry fellow, Cherelle Bishop, was paired with Wyane Doerr’s chemistry classes. She gave a presentation to the class about herself, the university and the science behind polymers (See Lesson: What is a polymer?), which introduced the activity on polymer. In this activity (See Lesson: Let’s make silly putty), students will mix a chemical cross-linking agent called sodium tetraborate into the poly(vinyl chloride) solution. Two formulations were made to allow students to evaluate the differences in these two polymer formulations. From the analysis of the formulations, students needed to design another formulation that is more stretchy or more bouncy by modifying the ratio between poly(vinyl alcohol) and borate solution.
The biology fellow, Krystal Fhram, was paired with two sections of biology. She brought in mouse brain samples and stained slides to have students look at under microscopes. These aides helped her to explain to the students some of the overall goals of CHIP. Krystal also helped guide student through a bacteria staining activity.
The engineering fellow, Ryan Selby, was paired with Thomas Murray’s physics lab. He helped Thomas Murray facilitate a trebuchet lab. Students were instructed to design conditions for trajectory experiments and predict the outcomes with a computer program.