Cottonwood Community School sixth-grade class earns grand prize from ‘Science Happens Here’
After weeks of embarking on a community-wide scavenger hunt, one determined sixth-grade class earned themselves a gooey visit from the Arizona Science Center’s “Science on Wheels.”
For eight weeks, third- through sixth-grade classrooms across the Cottonwood-Oak Creek School District participated in Science Happens Here, a scavenger hunt card game with a grand prize opportunity to conduct an experiment with professional scientists.
To play, students and their families were asked to collect Science Happens Here trading cards from local businesses in the community. Each card explained a Scientific, Engineering, Technological, or Mathematical (STEM) process used within that independent business to showcase the breadth of science-related activities happening outside the classroom on a daily basis.
The collectable cards then allowed students to unlock household experiments on the Science Happens Here website (www.sciencehappenshereaz.com), earning them a point for their classroom.
Cherie Heath’s students collectively earned a whopping 22 points, marking them this season’s victors of Science Happens Here. For their grand prize experience, the students chose to conduct a dissection experiment with the Arizona Science Center to study the anatomy of a squid.
“I have not heard that much enthusiasm about a program in a very long time,” said District Superintendent, Steve King. “It is collaborations like these that make us stronger as a community.”
The Local First Arizona Foundation, Arizona Rural Development Council, and Arizona SciTech Festival designed Science Happens Here to advance STEM education in rural Arizona.
The program bridges the gap between formal and informal learning environments by expanding on classroom learning with accessible, hands-on,
“Science Happens Here is Sneaky Science at its best,” said Jeremy Babendure, executive director of the Arizona SciTech Festival.
“It not only showcases to the public how science happens all around us but also empowers business and community leaders to become communicators of science.”
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