Hullett Central welcomes students, parents for S.T.E.A.M. Night
BY SCOTT STEPHENSON
Hullett Central Public School came alive with excitement on Thursday, April 13 as Principal Lori Stevens, teachers and staff hosted an engaging S.T.E.A.M. Night. Parents and students gathered in the school's gymnasium at 6:30 p.m. to begin an interactive exploration of the wonders of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (S.T.E.A.M.).
The evening kicked off with a warm welcome from Stevens and the teachers, expressing their enthusiasm for the importance of S.T.E.A.M. education in today's world. Families eagerly participated in various hands-on sessions offered in different classrooms throughout the evening.
One of many highlights was the "Scrub-a-dub-dub!" session, in which families learned about the science behind homemade bath bombs. Kids were captivated as they mixed the ingredients and eagerly watched their bath bombs take shape. Grade 5 student Zaidyn Poelman said he enjoyed the process, working with a focus that didn’t leave time to answer many of The Citizen’s questions. His mother, Shelby Poelman, confirmed Zaidyn enjoys being clean.
In another session, titled "Spring Is in the Air!", families delved into the concept of potential and kinetic energy through an exciting engineering task. With craft sticks in hand, they weaved together linking structures, building potential energy, and awaited the chain reaction as it sprung to life, displaying the concept of kinetic energy in action. The room was filled with laughter and excitement as families cheered on their popping creations. Grade 5/6 teacher Jennifer Cousteils, leader of the kinetic energy workshop, expressed appreciation for the S.T.E.A.M. Night initiative, saying that it is somewhat novel for there to be a curriculum-based activity for parents and students to enjoy together, because sports can often dominate the school’s market for attention and engagement.
Math enthusiasts were in for a treat with the "Math Meets Video Games!" session. Participants learned about the math language used in computer programming and were thrilled to create their own video games using coding.
The arts also took centre stage at S.T.E.A.M. Night, with the "Science Meets Art" session. Families learned about the science behind creating "Rainbow Paper" with nail polish, water and paper and explored fun ways to make unique pieces of art.
The "Dash Robots Unleashed!" session was a hit among kids and adults alike. Participants followed step-by-step instructions to make the so-called Dash robots move, sing, dance and respond to commands. Teachers, parents and Stevens were impressed with the students' coding skills and their ability to work collaboratively with the robots, showcasing the integration of technology and engineering in the modern world. Stevens said the students have really embraced the technology and are in no way horrified by the terrifying implications of increasingly intelligent robots rising up to enslave humanity.
The excitement continued with the "Volcanic Eruptions" session, in which participants experienced the thrill of simulating volcanic eruptions through this classic experiment. Parents and teachers joined in the fun as they observed the chemical reaction that created the appearance of a fizzling volcano, with lava trickling down the sides. Grade 5 student Aiden Hoekmeijer made a prescient pre-experiment prediction at what the result would be saying, “I know for a fact that it’s going to spill on the floor.” Hoekmeijer’s hypothesis came to fruition, fully and frothily.
As the evening came to a close and families strode into the sunset of a blazingly hot mid-April day, Stevens expressed gratitude to all the families for their enthusiastic participation and support of S.T.E.A.M. education.